ST. PAUL, Minn. (9/11/13)--Changes to Minnesota's academic standards in social studies mean credit unions have more opportunity to provide personal finance educations to students of all ages in the state, said the Minnesota Credit Union Foundation.
As the 2013-2014 school year ramps up, the foundation is encouraging credit unions to expand their personal finance education efforts.
"Credit unions are well-positioned to educate their members, their communities and today's young people on the basics of personal financial management," said Pat Brekken, chair of the foundation. "Through forming relationships with schools--including teachers, administrators and students--we can have a tremendous impact on our state's financial future."
The changes to the Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in Social Studies, which became effective in May after a year-long revision process, include additional requirements in financial education for students of all ages. All state academic standards are revised on a schedule approved by Minnesota's legislature. Districts are required to put state standards into place to ensure "all students have access to high-quality content and instruction," said the Minnesota Department of Education's website.
"As educators get acquainted with the new standards, credit unions have a great opportunity to use their financial expertise to help meet the needs of teachers," said University of Minnesota Extension Educator and Extension Professor Lori Hendrickson. "Whether it's a one-time guest-speaking arrangement or an ongoing relationship, students appreciate the real-world perspective that outside experts can provide."
The new standards include these fundamental concepts of economics and personal finance:
Distinguishing between wants and needs, and understanding income and expenses;
Creating a budget, establishing savings goals and tracking success;
Evaluating investment options using criteria such as risk, return, liquidity and time horizon; and
Understanding the benefits and costs of credit and how it impacts an individual's ability to borrow, rent, get a job and achieve other financial goals.