Financial literacy needs a shot in the arm

first_imgAccording to a recent study by the Council for Economic Education, the number of states that require high school students to complete any coursework in economics, has dropped over the last two years. Only 20 states currently mandate that high school students take economics — two fewer than in 2014. Just 17 states require high school students take a course in personal finance. That number has not improved in recent years.A few years back, 30,000 teenagers from 18 countries were surveyed and it was found that more than 1 in 6 students in the U.S. failed to reach the baseline level of proficiency in financial literacy. Students in the United States spend about 1,000 hours in school each year, and yet very few, if any, of that time is dedicated to learning about personal finance. The result? American students fall in the middle of the financial literacy pack globally, performing on average behind Latvia and just ahead of Russia. That should concern us all.So what are we going to do? Are credit unions making a difference? I took a look at a WalletHub study that was recently done. They analyzed financial education programs and consumer habits in each of the 50 states and the findings are rather interesting. Wisconsin, which I have viewed as the mothership of credit union land, was ranked 13th in “financial knowledge and education”  and 17th in financial planning a “daily financial habits.” The full report is here.Now, I’m not blaming the credit union movement, because there are no doubt many factors at play. But I think we all can agree, we have a problem and an opportunity. Our associations, our leagues and our centers of influence need to push the financial literacy agenda. At the same time, credit union leadership and boards need to assure they are doing their part to execute aggressive financial literacy programs. Let’s be very honest; we have a vested interest in seeing Americans improve their financial situation. 31SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Bryan Clagett Bryan is on the executive team and singularly focused on driving revenue growth through a variety of new initiatives that help financial services and fintech become ever more relevant to … Web: Detailslast_img read more