Michigan became the latest state to mandate a financial literacy course for high school graduation. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a bill into law mandating all high school students to take at least a half-credit financial literacy course before graduation.
Bill 5190, which was passed by the Michigan legislature, was introduced by Rep. Diana Farrington, R-Utica would modify the Michigan Merit Curriculum to include successful completion of a half-credit course in personal finance as a graduation requirement. The requirement would apply to students obtaining their high school diplomas from public schools, including charter schools.
Announcing the decision, Governor Whitmer said:
I remember having a conversation with my own daughter and she was grumbling about algebra 2. Why do I need to know about quadratics? I need to know how to pay my taxes and my bills. That always stuck with me because it is really true. We know a lot of young people leave high school and never have the chance to really understand some of those fundamental aspects of being an adult and growing wealth.
Research shows that students who acquire high-quality personal finance education in high school manage their finances better as adults. This year, the states of Florida and Georgia made personal finance education mandatory before graduation. With the new law, Michigan became the 13th state in the country to include financial literacy as a mandatory graduation requirement. Currently, 47 states include personal finance in their high school curriculum.
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