Next Gen Personal Finance, a non-profit with a mission to ensure every high school student in America takes a personal finance course by the year 2030, has recognized Benjamin Logan High School with its Gold Standard School award.
Montana State University researchers teamed up with NGPF to evaluate thousands of high school course catalogs and graduation requirements on a scale as follows: Bronze Standard Schools, Silver Standard Schools and the highest rating, Gold Standard Schools.
Gold Standard Schools ensure all students take at least one standalone semester course in personal finance before graduation.
Outside of the six states that currently require every high school student will take a personal finance course, researchers identified 1,591 Gold Standard Schools.
“We are working to prepare our students so they are not in our shoes so many years down the line, trying to make up for lost time,” said Nicole Terrill, BLHS career readiness instructor. “We are truly blessed to help our students see how beneficial financial literacy is.
“Let’s celebrate the end of, ‘I wish I had started sooner or somebody would have told me.’ Let’s give our students a huge hug in the form of knowing how to navigate the world of financials and to have that background knowledge now. Let’s help them have the financial futures we wish we could go back and redo now.
Benjamin Logan High School requires personal finance for every junior. Financial literacy is currently an elective in most schools in the state.
To earn a diploma from BLHS, students must complete one credit of career readiness (financial literacy), which covers topics such as taxes, checking, savings, paying for college, types of credit and managing credit, investing, insurance, and budgeting.
Throughout the course, students research careers and occupations, review post secondary admissions qualifications, build resumes, complete top-notch job applications, develop interviewing skills and participate in internships. Opportunities for involvement in FCCLA and service learning are an integral part of this class.
“Our students will reap the benefits of the real-world skills used in financial literacy,” BLHS Principal Brian Powderly said.
K-12 financial education has recently found the spotlight with 26 state legislatures introducing bills to expand access to financial education in public schools in 2021.
“Gold Standard Schools show remarkable leadership, surging ahead of state progress on financial education instead of waiting for a mandate,” NGPF co-Founder Tim Ranzetta said.