Bill calls for high school financial literacy courses

Published: Mar. 15, 2023 at 3:53 PM PDT
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CARSON CITY, Nev. (KOLO) -Freshman Assemblyman Duy Nguyen says when he campaigned last year, there was one thing constituents wanted if he were elected.

“One of the problems I want you to fix is, that I am concerned,” Assemblyman Nguyen says of the conversations. “I am teaching my young kids at home on financial literacy. But they aren’t collaborating with me at school. So, I have teenagers they aren’t going to listen to me.”

True to his word, his first bill deals with financial literacy and young adults.

Called Assembly Bill 274, it requires students at public high schools to enroll for a certain number of credits involving financial literacy. What was once taught in home economics is not non-existent for the high school student.

But they are skills Assemblyman Nguyen says can help students navigate the world of finance. Understanding simple versus compound interest, how credit cards work, and perhaps more importantly how to interpret a paycheck.

“The kids are looking at the thousand dollars gross earnings and saying I get that one thousand to spend,” says Nguyen. “Ah no you don’t. You have to back out the taxes. You have to back out your bills. You have to back out your rent. Your transportation costs. Your health care costs.”

The assemblyman says this bill has bi-partisan support and believes it just makes good “sense” if you will.

Buying a home, a car, any major purchase takes financial literacy--that’s if the buyer doesn’t want to land in financial turmoil.

“I agree 100%,” says Richard Jay.

Financial planner with Wells Fargo, Richard Jay, says he thinks this bill is a great idea. He says he believes such an education now may help kids into adulthood and beyond into retirement.

“I mean that is one of the biggest things we are facing now,” says Jay, senior Vice President of Wells Fargo Advisors Finet. “Is people are getting ready to retire but they haven’t saved enough. So hopefully we can take these kids and say you need to start paying for retirement now.”

Assembly Bill 274 has not had a committee hearing yet. But when it does, it will be before the Assembly Committee on Education.