HARRISBURG – Legislation sponsored by Sen. Chris Gebhard (R-48) to improve personal financial literacy by requiring completion of a half-credit economics and personal finance course as a high school graduation requirement was passed by the full Senate today.
The most recent estimates calculate there are more than 350 million American-owned credit card accounts, and, on average, credit card owners have about four cards apiece. This has led to astonishing levels of debt. As a nation, families in the United States are approaching approximately $1 trillion dollars in credit card debt and more than $15 trillion dollars in debt total.
“Far too often, the financial decisions our younger generations are making early in their lives are putting them at a financial disadvantage,” Gebhard stated.
The course created by Senate Bill 1243 will teach the importance of credit scores, APR for student loans and home mortgages, budgeting, compounding interest, saving for retirement and other basic financial concepts.
“By teaching high school students the financial basics, they will learn necessary money management skills to position themselves for lifetime success and financial independence,” Gebhard said. “This legislation is truly an investment in our youth and the Commonwealth’s financial future.”
The content of the course will be in line with standards established by the second edition of the Voluntary National Content Standards in Economics and the 2013 National Standards for Financial Literacy, as developed by the Council for Economic Education.
The bill now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.
CONTACT: Matthew Urban, 717-787-5708