At Hubbard High School, there are dozens of different courses available for students to take. Whether it be College Credit, honors classes, or even various electives, there are plenty of options from which to choose. Students at Hubbard are confidently able to use the pythagorean theorem to find the third side of a triangle or write an outstanding five-paragraph essay about the effects of phone use. However, when it comes to life after high school, a student’s ability to deal with real life situations is…well…less than.
401K, 403b, and RothIRA: to most students, these financial phrases may sound familiar, yet few truly understand what they mean. Shockingly, many highschoolers are unable to perform the simplest financial actions such as write a check or use an ATM. Senior Ellie Lambert explains that she is unsure of what financial steps to take after graduation, and she knows it is “important to start saving for retirement early.” However, the problem is that no one has ever specifically explained how to “start early.”
So what needs to be done? First, Hubbard High School should start providing financial education classes for upperclassmen. It’s important for these courses to be available to only older students because they are the ones who will apply the newly learned skills in a short amount of time. Underclassmen would most likely forget the material before they would possibly be able to use the financial help. Secondly, these courses should be mandatory for students, just like the four core subjects. Learning how to balance a budget is just as, if not more important than any skill learned in chemistry, algebra, or history class. Thirdly, the school should provide hands-on opportunities for students to apply their knowledge during seminars, field trips, and lectures from financial experts.
Starting early will allow students to limit the amount of economic mistakes they make in their lifetime. By the time most people finally realize the importance of finances, it is too late for them to make profits. According to CNBC, the average adult has $6,194 worth of credit card debt, and almost one quarter of adults in the U.S. have no retirement fund at all. This problem could be fixed by starting young people on the right path early on in their lives.
Early financial education at Hubbard High School could improve the lives of each graduating class. It’s important to start this process quickly to allow the largest number of people to succeed. Do not worry, lack of interest amongst students would definitely not be a problem; people like Sidney Marenkovic, senior at Hubbard High, would be very interested to start learning about monetary investments. “I would absolutely love to take a financial class. Although it’s a little too late for me now, I do hope the grades below us get a chance to start early,” says Sidney. Let’s hope they do.