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By Casey McDermott, USA TODAY

Starting this fall, Virginia high school students will need more than reading, writing and arithmetic to snag a diploma.

Incoming high school freshmen will be required to take a one-credit course outlining the ABCs of economics and personal finance.

Virginia joins a handful of states, including Missouri, Utah and Tennessee, that mandate a class in financial education. Similar legislation aimed at improving students' financial literacy has been introduced in Maryland, while several states require teachers to weave personal finance lessons into existing coursework.

Combined with grassroots efforts by non-profits and financial institutions, it's all part of a nationwide push to keep Generation Y from making money mistakes that could haunt them long after they graduate from college.

For younger children, the "Money Matters: Make it Count" partnership between the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and the Charles Schwab Foundation has brought financial literacy lessons to more than 245,000 students since it made its debut in 2004.

FULL ARTICLE AT http://www.usatoday.com/money/perfi/basics/2011-08-12-personal-finance-courses_n.htm

Teachers Say Genworth Foundation/EverFi-Sponsored Course Enhances the Material They Teach
(ADDED NOTE by CJ$: EverFi presented its course at the LA Educators Conference on April 2, 2011)

RICHMOND, Va., Aug. 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Virginia high school students exposed to a new online financial literacy learning tool this past school year say they are smarter about personal finance issues than they were before and believe all Virginia high school students should take the course – that according to a survey by the Genworth Foundation, the program's sponsor, and EverFi, Inc.
Last November, the Genworth Foundation announced a three-year commitment to strengthen financial education in more than 300 high schools across the Commonwealth of Virginia by introducing a six-hour online financial literacy course - Money, My Future(SM)' - designed by Washington D.C.-based EverFi.  The EverFi program aligns with Virginia state standards and uses the latest in new media technologies - 3D gaming, social networking, online animation video and messaging tools - to make complex financial concepts compelling and relevant for today's digital generation.  The program requires minimal teacher training and few school-based resources to implement.  More than 100 high schools statewide were introduced to the course last fall.
During the 2010-2011 school year, more than 8,000 students from 84 Virginia High Schools were active on the My Money, My Future network.  Students taking the special online course spent more than 34,000 hours on the site.
A survey of participating students who took the course yielded the following results:
82% of the students participating in all nine of the course modules rated them 'valuable' or 'extremely valuable.'
70% of student respondents said that financial education was 'extremely important' for their financial future
74% of student respondents felt that all students should be required to take My Money, My Future.
45% of student respondents say they have had a conversation with their parents or an adult about personal finance since taking My Money, My Future.
86% of student respondents believed that using interactive, online technology courses similar to My Money, My Future is an effective way to teach students
Students were asked to rate their financial knowledge on a scale of 1-10 before and after taking My Money, My Future :
Before taking the course, more than 64% of student respondents rated their financial knowledge at a '4' or below
After taking the course, more than 83% of student respondents rate their financial knowledge at a '7' or above.

 

Among teachers, 92% felt My Money, My Future enhanced the material they were teaching and 96% would like the curriculum offered to future students in their high school.
"Freshmen at Lee High are excited each time they log in to the My Money, My Future program," said Wendy Enoch, a teacher at Robert E. Lee High School in Staunton City.   "Using components such as games and avatars to capture the attention of teenagers in an area that sometimes bores them is genius. The lessons learned through this program will guide their financial decisions well into adulthood."
In 2009, the Virginia Board of Education (VBOE) mandated a course in economics and personal finance as a requirement for high school graduation.  The mandate begins in the fall of 2011.  In implementing My Money, My Future, the Genworth Foundation will continue to work with the State Department of Education, local school districts and other nonprofits, including the Virginia Council on Economic Education, to provide teacher training and professional development at no cost to teachers or schools.
"Financial literacy empowers people to make informed and responsible choices and is a building block for a secure financial future," said Leon E. Roday, chairman of the Genworth Foundation board of directors.  "By adding private-sector expertise, resources, and funds to the work being done by non-profit organizations and community groups that specialize in financial education, we can significantly raise the quantity and quality of financial education in our schools."
About the Genworth Foundation
Established in 2005, the Genworth Foundation is the charitable giving arm of Genworth Financial.  The Foundation is committed to helping build strong communities around the world.  Each year, the Foundation makes direct investments in the community through charitable contributions and matching gifts.  For more about Genworth in the community, visit genworth.com/community.
About Genworth Financial
Genworth Financial, Inc. (NYSE: GNW) is a leading Fortune 500 insurance holding company that is dedicated to helping people secure their financial lives, families and futures. Genworth has leadership positions in offerings that assist consumers in protecting themselves, investing for the future and planning for retirement -- including life insurance, long term care insurance, financial protection coverages, and independent advisor-based wealth management -- and mortgage insurance that helps consumers achieve homeownership while assisting lenders in managing their risk and capital.
Genworth has approximately 6,500 employees and operates through three segments: Retirement and Protection, U.S. Mortgage Insurance and International. Its products and services are offered through financial intermediaries, advisors, independent distributors and sales specialists. Genworth Financial, which traces its roots back to 1871, became a public company in 2004 and is headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. For more information, visit genworth.com. From time to time, Genworth releases important information via postings on its corporate website. Accordingly, investors and other interested parties are encouraged to enroll to receive automatic email alerts and Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds regarding new postings. Enrollment information is found under the "Investors" section of genworth.com.
About EverFi
EverFi Inc., based in Washington, D.C., provides the leading education media platform to teach students the core concepts of financial literacy, student loan management and other key life skills.  Through its proprietary technology platform, the company is powering a national movement that enables foundations, corporations, school districts and universities in 48 states to launch community-based programs in a variety of off-curriculum subjects. EverFi's award-winning platform is designed to provide an exciting and engaging experience for students and features the latest technology, including rich media, high-definition video, diagrams and avatars.  Learn more at www.everfi.com.

By SHEILA RILEY, FOR INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY
By RON LIEBER Published: April 15, 2011 The New York Times One of the best things about being around preschool-age children is that they are a blank slate awaiting your imprint. All of the big questions come up before first grade — God and death, jail and fairies — and most 4-year-olds will believe pretty much any answer you give them. Until recently, however, few people made much effort to get children this age to think hard about money. Why go all pecuniary on a child who has barely mastered counting? In the wake of the financial crisis, however, and the realization that individuals share at least some blame for the bubbles, a number of people and organizations have taken up the cause of helping the next generation of grown-ups form better habits at an earlier age. The JumpStart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy recently expanded its target age group to include the pre-kindergarten set. A new book called "Pretty Penny Sets Up Shop" tells the story of a young girl who sets up a "small mall" in her grandmother's attic to pay for her grandmother's surprise party.
  Sacramento CPA Bruce Kajiwara talks to Victoria Stolinski's students about budgeting wants vs. needs – such as how to pay for a senior prom's accessories – all the way to retirement. By Claudia Buck This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. The Sacramento Bee Published: Sunday, Apr. 3, 2011 - 12:00 am
First, learn the basics. Then set a good example for your children.By Jennifer Schonberger, Staff Writer
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 7, 2011 Obama Administration Announces Start of Student Exam Window for 2011 National Financial Capability Challenge Challenge Prepares Students for Secure Financial Futures; Runs March 7 – April 8 WASHINGTON – Today, high school-aged students across the country will begin taking a voluntary online exam as part of the 2011 National Financial Capability Challenge. The Challenge is designed to enhance the financial capability of high school-aged youth across the United States by strengthening their knowledge of the basics of saving, budgeting, and investing. "All of us - parents, educators, policymakers and students - share the responsibility to ensure that young people in our country learn a set of practical skills that will help them navigate important personal financial decisions," said Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. "This Challenge will help students understand basic finance. To sign up to late the Challenge or download an Educator's Guide go to Treasury.gov
Taking the Challenge could really pay off! The Charles Schwab Foundation is proud to honor students who excel on the National Financial Capability Challenge. High-scoring students are eligible for $1,000 scholarships and $1,000
February 2 : Investment News A bill introduced last month would create a federal grant program intended to increase financial literacy among teens and young adults. Called the Young Adults Financial Literacy Act and introduced by Rep. Andre Carson, D-Ind., HR 300 calls for grants to be funneled to organizations that could develop and implement financial education programs for students 15 through 24. The program would include teaching skills such as financial planning, budgeting, saving and managing debt. For more details, visit thomas.loc.gov.
New from the Money Mammals and CJ$ Advisory Board member John Lanza is a holiday song to teach young children about money. Find it on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Money-Mammals/32601620501?v=app_6009294086&ref=ts