Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Doug Jones (D-Ala.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) today introduced legislation that would establish a competitive grant program at the U.S. Department of Education to help states build in-school financial literacy programs, and to encourage community partnerships to promote financial literacy among school-age youth.
The Youth Financial Learning Act of 2018 creates a grant for local school districts to implement, expand, or sustain financial literacy curriculum with the goal of enhancing student understanding of personal and consumer finance, including a focus on personal credit and student loan borrowing. Alabama is among the few states that requires personal finance education as a graduation requirement.
“These days, many high school juniors and seniors are making big financial decisions that will follow them the rest of their adult lives. Without strong financial literacy skills, they may not have the tools they need to fully understand the long-term impacts of these decisions. It’s important that we prepare them for these financial choices well before they will need to make them, whether they are looking to take out loans for college now or eventually preparing to buy their first home or start their own business,” said Senator Jones.
“Financial literacy education will help students make smart financial decisions for their entire lives. I am proud to be a cosponsor of the Youth Financial Learning Act that will make it possible for local school districts to start and maintain financial literacy programs. Congress should pass this legislation to ensure that our students are equipped with these critical skills as they begin to prepare for their adult lives,” said Senator Gillibrand.
“As we work to support job creation and expand economic opportunity for our young people, we also need to ensure that students are prepared to navigate their current and future finances, including student loan obligations, paying bills on time, establishing good credit, and even planning for retirement,” Senator Hassan said. “This bill will support the future financial well-being of young Granite Staters and Americans by establishing federal grant programs for states to build financial literacy programs in schools and to encourage community partnerships to promote financial literacy among school-aged students.”