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Teacher Testimonial Video

The Importance of Teaching Teens Personal Finance

Financial education is not just about money. It is about helping teens sort through all of the possible pathways to create a personal roadmap to their financial future. Hear some of the reasons why experienced teachers think it is important to teach personal finance.

Video Transcript: Why Teach Personal Finance?

Joey Running, West Albany High School

There are a number of different reasons to teach personal finance. I think breaking the poverty cycle is important. We have to remember that personal finance really is personal. And they learn their behaviors and their role modeling from whomever's at home.

If they don't understand the behavioral aspect of why they're making those decisions whether it's purchasing or spending or credit or insurance or purchasing a car then they find themselves in a situation of possible debt. And in a sense, going down in a downward spiral into poverty and I think that is a system that needs to be fixed.

Pandora Fifer, Norfolk Alternative High School

We have a lot of inner-city kids, I actually teach at the alternative school in Norfolk so we have a very diverse population there. Norfolk just reimplemented the program about four years ago.

They had it, and then did away with it for ten years and just brought it back because all of a sudden, they realize our kids really do need to learn about finance before they go out on their own.

Persis Beaven, Northwest Early College High School

Last year I taught financial mathematics for the first time as an elective.

I had a group of 15 students and the class was a success. Many of the students requested a class for next year and that helped convince my principal to make it a mandatory course, and so now I teach it to all of our seniors.

It's also alarming that many other students just go out on their own and they have never talked to their parents about writing a check or opening a checking account or just financing a car, or how to take care of their credit.

Christopher Brida, Benjamin Franklin High School

The reason why I started teaching personal finance is because it had such an impact on me when I was in high school.

It's really about developing a critical mass and so what that means to me is, that my students bring personal finance home.

In the neighborhood that I teach, it's a very low-income neighborhood. A lot of the students don't have even basic personal finance or any sort of financial literacy whatsoever. Having them learn these skills and then be able to bring these skills home is something that not only impacts them in my classroom but also potentially over time, would impact the neighborhood.