The State of Florida is mandating that it will be compulsory for all the high school students to take up a financial literacy course which. According to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, the course will teach them money management skills, help with understanding financial debt, balancing the checkbook, in addition to teaching the students about investing money wisely. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the legislation into law on Tuesday after it was passed by the House and the Senate as well, earlier in March. According to the mandate, the freshmen year students will now be required to enroll in a half-credit course in money management or personal finance.
Rep. Demi Busatta Cabrera (R-FL) is the leading sponsor of the legislation. According to a report by CNBC, Cabrera said that it is important for every student to be familiar with money management knowledge and skills in order to succeed in our society financially, no matter what profession the students want to pursue in the future. Director of Educational Outreach at Nex Gen Personal Finance, Yanely Espinal added that in this quickly-changing world of money, it is crucial that students are equipped with financial knowledge as it will help the coming generation break the cycle of financial illiteracy.
The real responsibility of teaching the management of finances to the young students lies on the teachers. According to an article by Q&A, the Director of the Economics Center and Economics Professor at the University of Cincinnati, Julie Health believes that teachers themselves don’t feel qualified enough to educate students about financial management. She further added that 90% teachers do believe that financial literacy should be taught at the school however 82% of them also claim that they are not capable of teaching such concepts.
Julie Heath also argued that districts and schools should not force the teachers to teach something that they feel they are not qualified enough to teach, as due to budget constraints, teachers themselves get deprived of professional development which can help them teach financial literacy more confidently.
Some people argue that the basic concepts of managing finances should be taught at home and it should be taught by the parents. However, a lot of parents don’t feel confident enough to teach their children about financial literacy, and some kids don’t even have parents. DeSantis understands the vital importance of financial literacy which is why he wants the new generation to be prepared for this world that revolves around money.