Florida students from class 9 onwards will need to learn about credit, credit scores, types of savings and investments, loans and accounts to be able to graduate.
High school students in Florida will have to take a financial literacy course from 2023-24 to be able to graduate, under the Bill signed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.
On March 21, DeSantis signed the Bill SB 1054 into law, which lawmakers had unanimously passed earlier this month.
What will the course include?
The Bill requires all students in Florida to take and pass a half-credit course in personal finance and money management in high school. The new law applies to those students who are starting Class 9 in 2023-24.
Students will be instructed on financial concepts such as credit, credit scores, types of savings and investments, different types of bank accounts, how to open bank accounts and how to apply for loans.
The Bill will bring down the number of required electives to seven-and-a-half credits from eight credits at present.
Why is it necessary?
The Bill will provide a foundation on financial concepts for students that will help them in life regardless of what path they choose, DeSantis said at a press event on March 21.
“This will provide a foundation for the students to learn the basics of money management, understanding debt, understanding how to balance a checkbook, understanding the fundamentals of investing,” the governor said.
“I’m proud that learning the basics of credit, budgeting, savings and investing will now be taught throughout Florida’s schools,” Tampa Bay Times quoted state chief financial officer Jimmy Patronis as saying.
With the new Bill, Florida officially became the largest state in the US to mandate a financial literacy course for high school kids.
According to non-profit Next Gen Personal Finance’s Bill tracker, there are 54 personal finance education Bills pending in 26 states in the US, CNBC reported.
Apart from Florida, 10 other states require high school students to take a standalone personal finance course to graduate.
Over 20 states in the US have personal finance education in their curriculum, albeit in a different form.
One Bill pending in the state of Tennessee proposes to make it mandatory for middle school students to take personal finance courses. Tennessee already has personal finance courses for high school students.