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Intersections: Winter 2005

Does Your School Have a Personal Finance Course?

Is your school looking for a way to add a tried-and-true semester-long personal finance course to its elective offerings? Do you have a personal finance course that needs expanding or updating? The Keys to Financial Success course may be perfect for your school.

Since 2001, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, in partnership with the University of Delaware Center for Economic Education and Entrepreneurship, the Delaware Bankers Association, and the Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Maryland and Delaware, has equipped schools to offer the Keys to Financial Success course. In the 2004-2005 academic year, the course is being offered in 25 schools in Delaware and Pennsylvania.

Designed by the University of Delaware Center, the Keys course includes five units: Future Financial Goals and the Decision Making Process; Career Planning—Investments in Human Capital; Money Management; Consumer Skills; and Risk Protection. Students learn important life skills, such as budgeting, borrowing, saving, and investing. The program includes pre- and post-testing of students, quarterly roundtable meetings for the teacher, and a complete curriculum package designed with state standards in economics and personal finance in mind. Teachers receive, free of charge, one week of training at the end of June, a copy of the National Council on Economic Education’s Financial Fitness for Life curriculum, and a binder that includes the suggested day-to-day lessons for the entire course. Schools commit to offering at least one section of the course per year but decide which department within the school will teach the course and where the course will appear in the schedule. Keys, which can be easily adapted from the semester format to a full-year course or block schedule, is designed to provide schools with a complete course ready for use in the high-school classroom.

Pennsylvania and New Jersey schools interested in learning more
about the Keys to Financial Success course should contact Todd Zartman (todd.zartman@phil.frb.org) at 215-574-6457.

Interested high schools in Delaware should contact Barbara Emery (emeryb@lerner.udel.edu) at the University of Delaware Center for Economic Education and Entrepreneurship at 302-831-4622.

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