If finance is so important, it should be taught in high schools

By and

Editor:

I am writing in response to Richard Whipple and Amber Jackson’s letter (“College students need to become financially literate,” April 4). If they are so concerned about young people having the skills that they need to get by, perhaps they should consider to whom they’re talking. If a finance class is so important, then shouldn’t it be taught in high school, where a larger percentage of the population is present?

A college education is about opening the mind and broadening our horizons. To their challenge about whether the diversity or international credits could be learned at any stage in life, I say: “No, not as easily as the financial issue could.”

Personal finance is something that can easily be taught at home, whereas diversity and international understanding are hard to learn on your own, especially for those living in an area where society is very insular within our homogenized groups.

My graduating class at Alta High School had a total of six African-American students out of around 900. I think my class was fairly representative of the lower Sandy/Draper area, and serves to show how little contact we, in Utah, have with diverse students.

As far as learning to balance a checkbook, not only is this something that responsible parents should be teaching at home, but it is something that should be taught in high school. If the PIA wants Utah’s youth to have a background in finance, it should do it in high school. Most students have not yet accrued any debt, most do not yet have checking accounts and it’s not too late to stop habits from forming.

Zach ZimmerliSenior Communication