Financial literacy is becoming increasingly important in today’s rapidly evolving financial landscape. With Auditor General DeFoor calling for action on financial literacy education in Pennsylvania, schools across the state are beginning to recognize the importance of preparing students for life after graduation. Initiatives like FL4ALL, co-chaired by Walmart CEO Doug McMillon and Operation HOPE Founder John Hope Bryant, are working to embed financial literacy into the nation’s schools, workplaces, communities, and culture.
Financial Literacy in Schools
Several schools in Pennsylvania are already taking steps to incorporate financial literacy into their curricula. Scranton School District will offer a financial literacy course for senior students beginning next school year, while Millcreek Township School District offers a “Personal Finance & Business Calculations” course for 10th-12th graders. Martin Luther King High School partners with Philadelphia Financial Scholars to provide financial literacy education to students, and Ligonier Valley School District requires every student to pass a semester personal finance course covering topics such as consumer behavior, checking and savings accounts, credit, identity theft, investing and insurance, spending plans, and consumer decisions.
FL4ALL: A Coalition for Financial Literacy
Financial Literacy for All (FL4ALL) has announced that American Express, Dow Jones, and Moderna have joined a coalition of more than 40 leading organizations committed to promoting financial literacy throughout the US. The 10-year initiative aims to support financial literacy programs for the member organizations’ collective employee base of nearly five million people, advocate for financial literacy education to be provided to all students, and make unbiased and action-oriented financial literacy resources available to all through FL4ALL’s Resource Library.
529 Day: Encouraging Savings for Future Education
State Treasurer Deborah B. Goldberg, the Office of Economic Empowerment (OEE), and the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority (MEFA) are celebrating 529 Day and the importance of saving for future education, vocational training, and apprenticeships. Treasurer Goldberg’s BabySteps Savings Plan helps families plan for the future by providing a $50 seed deposit when a family member opens up a U.Fund 529 college savings account through MEFA, within one year of their child’s birth or adoption. Since 2020, the BabySteps Savings Plan has helped over 26,000 children start saving for their educational aspirations.
Be Money Smart: Auditor General DeFoor’s Financial Literacy Initiative
Auditor General Timothy L. DeFoor has been promoting financial literacy across Pennsylvania as part of his Be Money Smart initiative. DeFoor supports financial literacy curriculum being taught in all Pennsylvania schools and believes that financial literacy empowers students through informed decision-making. Pennsylvania’s current financial literacy grade is a “C” according to the American Public Education Foundation’s Nation’s Report Card on Financial Literacy. The Foundation suggests that if Pennsylvania requires a stand-alone personal finance course for high school graduation and adopts grade-specific K-12 academic standards, its grade will rise to an “A”. For more information on the Department of the Auditor General’s financial literacy efforts, visit www.PaAuditor.gov/BeMoneySmart.