Students in U.S. schools already had uneven access to financial education before the pandemic began last year. The fact that many school systems ended in-person learning in favor on virtual school threatened to make it even more difficult for students to get a handle on financial planning in academic setting but some schools found ways to adapt.
CNBC.com discusses this in “The pandemic has upended personal finance education in schools.” While one teacher they interviewed was unable to have the financial expert who usually comes in to help teach finance classes be there in person, another found it was easier to get guest speakers to appear in class via Zoom than it had been to arrange for a guest speaker to visit a physical classroom. That same teacher who was able to get experts into her classes via Zoom also found that her children were interested in learning more about finances. She was teaching at home and her children were also attending school at home so they were aware of her lessons and ended up getting their own custodial investment accounts.
The other part of this is that while some schools have found that it was challenging to hold students’ interest with lessons in finance delivered online or through a hybrid system where the teacher is teaching students in-person and online, there are many students learning more about money management from real life. Some are reading and seeing news about the how the pandemic changed the economy and personal finance. Others may be living out these lessons as the pandemic changed their family finances (for better or for worse).
The upending of our customary way of life has lessons for everyone. Many adults have had to go back to the basics of budgeting and building an emergency savings fund. Some families have learned how to barter. Others have benefited from the generosity of neighbors. The pandemic has highlighted the fact that many people do not understand money management basics but there is still time to learn. If you would like help in creating a plan and a roadmap for your financial future, contact a Fee-Only financial planner.