New requirement to helps students to balance checkbooks
2/4/2020, 10:12 p.m.
Illinois students may soon be equipped with the skills to tackle real-life financial issues, thanks to State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant.
Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) introduced Senate Bill 2474, which will allow students to take a financial literacy class as a math requirement for high school graduation.
"Our schools need to ensure students are not only able to excel academically, but also have the life skills to be successful as adults, "Bertino-Tarrant said. "Balancing checkbooks, calculating income taxes and understanding bank statements are vital life skills that we should want our young people to have. Our students need to be equipped with the knowledge to manage their money effectively."
Senate Bill 2474 allows that one-year, or a semester, of a financial literacy course may count toward the math requirement to graduate high school.
A report released by AIG Retirement Services found that students' low financial literacy levels result from little to no fiscal education within the K-12 school system.
They also found 36% of participants already have more than $1,000 in credit card debt. And many students do not have enough money to pay off their debts or are not fully aware of the consequences of leaving bills unpaid.
"As we tackle rising tuition costs and fees, we must ensure our students have the financial sense to understand how money works," Bertino-Tarrant said. "Mathematics is not just about formulas and right angles, we have an opportunity to show students how math applies to their lives as adults."
Bertino-Tarrant is looking forward to discussions on Senate Bill 2474 this upcoming legislative session.