Students learn financial literacy in the high school curriculum

  • Real Money, Real World is a financial education program for second year high school students.
  • It was taught this week at River View High School along with the other high schools in the county to come.
  • The centerpiece is an expense simulation featuring community volunteers advising students.
  • The program is delivered by The Ohio State University Coshocton County Extension Office.

WARSAW — Financial literacy is becoming more important than ever, and many in the community know it’s a skill high school students need as they become adults.

Real Money, Real World is a financial literacy program for sophomore high school students offered locally by The Ohio State University Extension Office. The program took place this week at River View High School with approximately 100 students. The next sessions will take place at Coshocton High School, Ridgewood High School and the Coshocton County Career Center.

The centerpiece of the program is an expense simulation where students go from resort to resort to complete a monthly budget. They have to consider food, transportation, housing and more. Students also draw chance cards that could increase their spending, like unexpected car repairs, or be a surprise windfall, like an inheritance.

Also considered are items that may affect his income, such as college degrees and technical training and deductions.

Emily Marrison, a family and consumer science educator at the local extension branch, went to schools for classroom lessons last year with the simulation on a smaller scale due to the COVID-19 pandemic .

“They’re finding out what it’s really like to budget a paycheck,” Marrison said. “It’s one thing to talk about a budget and throw numbers here and there, but when students are able to make their own decisions and say ‘I only have this amount of money and I have to decide what goes where’, that makes it more real to them.”

Emily Marrison of The Ohio State University of Coshocton County Extension talks to Emma Sampsel about how to budget for a financial literacy program.

Emma Sampsel was surprised by the cost of living, especially a basic need like food.

“Living at home, you don’t realize how much your parents are spending on you to have nice things. For you to be able to have our own car and a house is a lot more than you think,” he said. she declared.

Several community volunteers assisted at the 12 stations for the simulation of expenses. This mainly included people with a financial background, such as bank employees and financial consultants. Bob Bigrigg of Park National Bank assisted with the purchase of a vehicle.

“It’s a good program just from a banking and personal finance perspective because it teaches them things they need to know about the real world,” Bigrigg said.

Figuring out car payments was a big deal for Jacob Averitt.

“The money doesn’t go as far as you think,” he said.

Jacob Averitt talks to Lynn Jacobs of Coshocton County Ohio Means Jobs about considering child care for a monthly budget as part of a spending simulation at River View High School.

Coshocton County Auditor Chris Sycks handled the housing station where the biggest question was whether to buy or rent. It was her first time participating in the program.

“Kids really need to know, in real life, what’s going to happen when they get out. They need to know how to do their checkbook, how to budget, and some kind of understanding of what expenses really are,” said said Sycks.

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Louis R. Hancock