4 reasons why finance should be taught in schools

Personal finance is something I'm passionate about, finance and numbers might be boring to some people but I can't tell you how important a basic understanding of your financial situation is and being equipped with the knowledge to save money and get the best deal on everything is something I think everyone should be able to do. Everything I know about money I've learnt along the way, I've made it my mission to educate myself to make sure I'm in the best position I can be in and while I am still learning I'm also wondering why the basics of personal finance are still not being taught in schools.

When I was at school there were subjects I definitely didn't see the need for and now working in education myself, I'm seeing the same things. Kids are not being equipped for the real world and I just can't understand why. A basic understanding of bills, loans, savings etc would be so much more useful than many of the things that are taught, so why in 2019 is personal finance not on the curriculum? I've always being good with my money but I know there's lot of people who aren't and maybe learning about these things in school could save a lot of people from some difficult situations.

You can get a job and 16 but you've no clue about wages

Like a lot of people, I got my first job at 16 when I started college. I worked in a pub restaurant and got paid cash in hand. It was my first experience of earning my own money and my first experience of having my own wage slips. Luckily even at that age I knew what I wanted to do with my money which was save for holidays so I'd say that's the point where money saving became I big thing for me. Getting paid cash in hand weekly kept things pretty simple but that won't always be the case with your first job. Having an understanding of what's actually on your wage slip and being able to make the transition from a weekly to a monthly wage could help a lot of people and prepare them for later in life when they're hopefully dealing with bigger monthly wages and a more detailed wage slip. We expect young people to leave school and get a job but we don't equip them with the knowledge to actually deal with their own money for the first time. 

Student loans, mortgages, pensions

There's a lot of money you'll borrow or put away over your lifetime from direct debits for bills, paying rent or taking out a mortgage and paying into a pension scheme. The first time you do any of these things, it's scary! Having a clear understanding of what it actually means to take out a student loan or a mortgage can really help relieve some of the pressure. We're expecting 18 year old's to take out huge student loans with little to no understanding of what this means for them, when they'll be expected to repay them and how and does it effect them in the future? Many people will also be dealing with saving for rent or saving to buy property again with little to no knowledge of the costs involved. A basic education around these things would help people to make more informed choices and make the processes easier and less stressful. To me it's a basic life skill that people should know about from as early on as possible.

Maintaining a good credit score

No young person is going to be thinking about their credit score but an understanding of what it is, what increases it or decreases it and how it can effect future financial choices would really get a lot of young people thinking. I have a pretty good credit score, in fact the only suggestion to improve my score is to take out a credit card but I have no plans to do that. Aside from a student loan and mortgage I don't have any other loans and never have, I don't take things out on finance (phones etc are all paid for outright) I have a personal bank account and a joint account with my fiance, my personal account has an overdraft but I've never used it. The reason I think young people need to know about credit scores is it might protect them from making silly financial decisions such as taking things out on finance then falling behind with payments which is all too easy to do when you're young and you've got a bit of money of your own. Credit checks will be run on you for a lot of things and it could definitely have a negative impact when it comes to things like buying a house. Teaching young people that their financial actions have an impact later in life could really help people out.

Been able to make informed financial choices should be a basic right

The earlier we educate people about personal finance and keep that teaching going up to young people leaving school, the better equipped they'll be when it comes to personal finance. Knowing what's going on with your money should be something everyone can do but sadly that's not the case. Adding personal finance lessons to the curriculum would not only allow people to know what's going on with their wages and future big decisions like pensions and mortgages but it would even provide them with basic money saving knowledge which could put a stop to a lot of people getting involved with pay day loans and even worse, loan sharks. Adding personal finance to the curriculum wouldn't just be about teaching young people about money it would set people up for life.

Do you think personal finance is a subject we should be teaching in school? Would learning more about money have helped you out? Let me know in the comments! 

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