The Pulse

State Of Financial Education

Number of U.S. public high school students guaranteed to take a personal finance course on track to double to 53% by 2030

Gaps in access remain for students according to new report from Next Gen Personal Finance. View the complete report here.

BURLINGAME, Calif., April 16, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — The number of states guaranteeing a Personal Finance course to high school students grew from 17 to 25 in the last year. The new 2024 State of Financial Education Report from nonprofit Next Gen Personal Finance and researchers at Montana State University outlines what that means for the future of financial education and where glaring gaps in access remain.

In 2023, eight new states (Connecticut, Indiana, Louisiana, Minnesota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Wisconsin) adopted a Personal Finance course guarantee.

Once personal finance graduation requirements are fully implemented in the 25 U.S. states with this policy in place, by 2030, 53.3% of U.S. high school students will be guaranteed to take a Personal Finance course. Currently, 26.3% of U.S. public high school students are guaranteed to take a Personal Finance course.

“This doubling of access to financial education by 2030 shows a tipping point in the growing movement to ensure the next generation goes into adulthood with a foundation of personal finance knowledge that will benefit them for the rest of their lives,” said Tim Ranzetta, co-founder of NGPF.

The Benefits Of Personal Finance Courses

Research has clearly demonstrated that a Personal Finance course improves long-term financial decision-making and positively impacts student debt decisions and credit scores, helps graduates avoid predatory lenders, helps to increase savings rates among teachers, and even generates positive spillover effects on parents.

A recent report from Tyton Partners found that taking a one-semester course in personal finance results in an average per-student lifetime benefit of approximately $100,000. The report also found the cost of implementing a standalone course can be kept low given the availability of high-quality curricular resources and teacher professional development made available by providers at no or minimal cost.

Access To Personal Financial Education Is Limited

While about one in four students now have guaranteed access to a Personal Finance course, the majority (68.8%) only have access to an elective course or embedded instruction.

The number of states guaranteeing a personal finance course to high school students grew from 17 to 25 in the last year...

Access to personal finance education is still limited and inequitable. Outside of the states that guarantee the course, the statistics haven’t changed much from 2022. In those states, only one in 10 high school students are guaranteed to take a Personal Finance course prior to graduation.

High school students in rural locales are more than three times as likely to take a Personal Finance course than students attending schools in urban locales.

High schools in which greater than than 75% of students are Black or Hispanic are half as likely to guarantee a Personal Finance course as schools in which fewer than 25% of students are Black or Hispanic.

In schools where over 75% of the student population is eligible for Free & Reduced-Price Lunch, just 4.6% of high school students are guaranteed to take a Personal Finance course of at least one semester.

More From The State Of Financial Education Report

The report also includes data on how individual states stack up as well as insights into implementation in three states with the guarantee: Nebraska, North Carolina, and Utah.

Every school year since 2017-18, NGPF has released this State of Financial Education Report by reviewing individual course catalogs from U.S. public high schools. The 2024 report was conducted in collaboration with Dr. Carly Urban, a global leader in financial education research at Montana State University.

To learn more about the state of financial education in the U.S., join Dr. Carly Urban, Economic Professor at Montana State University as she discusses the findings of the 2024 State of Financial Education Report on Thursday, April 18 at 4:00pm PT via Zoom. Register here.

 

 

 

About Next Gen Personal Finance
Next Gen Personal Finance (NGPF) is a nonprofit committed to guaranteeing that all high school students receive a personal finance course prior to graduating. NGPF has become the number one source for nearly 100,000 educators looking for high-quality, engaging personal finance curriculum to equip students with the skills they need to thrive in the future. NGPF invests in teacher professional development with live Virtual Professional Development, 10 Certification Courses, and 40+ asynchronous On-Demand modules. NGPF has been recognized by Common Sense Education as a “Top Website for Teachers to Find Lesson Plans” and “Best Business and Finance Games” and also named NGPF a “Selection for Learning.” Visit ngpf.org for more.