Are we getting enough financial education?
I have long been an advocate of more substantial financial education in schools, so when I stumbled across the Financial Capability Strategy last year I was delighted to see there was finally some groundwork being done to improve matters.
This week sees the launch of Financial Capability Week!
If you’ve never heard of Financial Capability Week, it’s an initiative created by Money Advice Service to create awareness about the importance of financial capability.
Access to credit and other financial services have changed dramatically over the last 30 years so I suppose it should be no surprise that one in four 25-34 year olds are living with a problem debt – 2.4 million people struggling so early on in adult life!
I can’t speak for everyone, but from my own personal experience there was no financial education throughout my education.
A brief dabble when Yorkshire Building Society came into my high school to encourage us to open a savings account and taking turns to run our own kiosk once a week, but nothing substantial.
There’s an argument that it should be down to schools to teach it.
However, although financial education has been compulsory in secondary schools since 2014, there is no set curriculum to follow and only half of schools in the UK follow the national curriculum as academies and free schools etc. are exempt.
Throw in the fact that an investigation by PFEG (Personal Finance Education Group) found 55% of all the teachers surveyed had never taught financial education before, and it’s clear our children’s future cannot be left solely at the mercy of their teachers knowledge of finance.
What financial education do I think we need?
Well, a lot more than children are currently getting that’s for sure.
From what I can gather speaking to parents I know, nothing much has changed since I was getting dragged to school everyday – sorry mum.
Yet, on average, children in the UK start internet shopping by age 10, and are subjected to far more adverts for credit than ever before.
The following articles are things you can implement in the home from primary school aged children to teenagers.
These skill are things we are all going to need and you’re unlikely to see them taught in schools any time soon.
Learning the art of saving before we spend means we have enough to cover emergencies, money for a mortgage deposit and retirement among other things.
Instilling the need to save from an early age will teach your child to be prudent with their money, helping them to understand its value and that is ‘doesn’t grow on trees’.
Check out these methods, it’s simple and easy.
Practical living advice
So, usually with financial education related posts it’s mainly focused on saving and credit.
Sometimes what we miss most about a child’s financial education is giving them practical advice about paying bills and shopping etc.
Teaching them how to budget for household bills reduces the risk of them turning to credit to pay them in the future.
Check out these tips to help reduce and manage household bills.
Credit isn’t a dirty word and can be a fantastic financial tool if it is handled properly.
The most important thing is to understand what you’re signing up for and having the ability to manage it properly.
Try out these methods to give them the knowledge they need before the time comes!
Applying for credit
When they’re ready to enter the world of finance they’ll need to know about the application process and how their credit rating works.
However, it’s not just credit ratings and loans you need to consider when it comes to finance.
The following articles offer advice on building your credit rating, as well as guiding you through some potential stumbling blocks you may not have known about.
If you are implementing simple financial skills into your child’s life at home, it will be far more than they’re receiving at school and you’ll be preparing them for the real challenges in life they are going to face.
I hope you enjoy and as ever, I’d love to hear your thoughts and any tips you have yourself!
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