Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Doug Jones (D-Ala.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) have re-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. Alabama is among the few states that requires personal finance education as a graduation requirement.
The Youth Financial Learning Act of 2019 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.
“Financial literacy is a fundamental, but unfortunately, undervalued skillset that is necessary to help our young people make smart financial decisions,” Senator Hassan said, a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP). “Whether our young people are looking to take out student loans – or establish good credit – this bill would create federal grants to help prepare them for the long-term impacts of those decisions and support their future financial well-being.”
“For many of our high school students, they will soon face major financial decisions that can have a lasting impact on their future. By providing them with the financial literacy skills they need, they can make smarter, more informed choices about taking on the expense and commitment of loan. Alabama is leading the way by requiring personal financial education and, through my legislation, I hope we can help more young folks better prepare to go to college, buy a home, or start a business,” said Senator Jones, a member of the Senate Committees on Banking and Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP).
“Many students face long-lasting financial decisions as they enter into adulthood, such as starting to budget and pay bills, taking on student debt, and accessing credit. Knowing how to manage personal finances for each of these life steps would help set up young adults for financial success,” said Senator Gillibrand. “The Youth Financial Learning Act would help make it possible for schools to start and maintain financial literacy programs. I urge Congress to pass this legislation and help prepare students with the skills they need to make smart financial decisions throughout their lives.”