SCHOOL READY VERSUS LIFE READY: MAKING A CASE FOR FINANCIAL EDUCATION IN THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS
University of Hawaii at Manoa (UNITED STATES)
Public schools in the United States spend years in educating students and teaching them to master areas of content in mathematics, biology, social science and various other disciples. However, in light of the changing global economy, many students graduating from high school and universities are not life ready; while they may be conversant in areas of content, many do not have the life skills of managing their finances. The research literature on financial literacy and capability indicate that many parents do not guide their children in managing their money, many parents do not themselves save for emergencies, and many are not able to retire at the time when they are about to retire.
This presentation reports on the findings of a survey of parents (n = 1,164) from 16 public elementary school in resource limited districts, and the data from a children saving project. In particular, the presentation focuses on the barriers to financial education and savings behavior, and highlights the serious need for financial education to be provided to students earlier (in elementary and secondary schools) rather than later.