State law requires schools to teach financial literacy

Reported by: Henry Ramos
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Updated: 1/09/2013 3:07 am

Starting later this year, a state law will require public schools to teach students the ins and outs of funding their education be it through scholarship, loans, or other options.

Lubbock ISD Social Studies Coordinator, Misty Rieber, said "The new law adds a little bit more guidance and specificity to what the expectation is to begin talking about college."

Two years ago, the state legislature passed a law requiring public high schools to teach students about the costs of higher education and how to pay for it.

LISD Director of Counseling and College-Career Readiness, Tammy Edmonson, said "I think financial aid and understanding that process is probably the most difficult thing when you look at the entire college process."

Lubbock ISD has been teaching financial literacy since 2003.

"So our students already look at opportunity costs," Rieber said. What good does it do to get a high school degree versus a college degree, versus technical, masters and how much more money can you make with those different degrees."

"We also provide in the Fall parent meetings to lets parents know about the process and steps involved," Edmonson said. Also, classroom presentations, going in early in the Fall and letting students known about  college-and career information and scholarship information."

Becky Wilson with Texas Tech Student Financial Aid said this idea is a win-win situation.

"They may not have in the forefront an application of financial aid, or financial literacy," Wilson said. We support every effort at the high school level, the college, the high school counselor level in educating the students about financial literacy."

The law is one of many aimed at boosting student's financial knowledge. As the state's population continues to grow, more students are expected to need loans, grants and scholarships. 

In a 2011 report by the Institute for College Access, graduates with students loans had an average debt of more than $26,000.

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