Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) has signed a bill into law that mandates financial literacy classes in order for Florida high schoolers to graduate.
Populist rhetoric usually criticizes school systems for not preparing students for the real world and placing too much emphasis on textbook knowledge, and not common sense. This reason is exactly why Governor DeSantis signed the bill into law this week.
The skills prioritized by the legislation will be “applicable in their lives regardless of what path they take,” DeSantis said Tuesday at a Tampa press conference. The class is also said to only be half a credit, and will not be available for students to take until the 2023-24 school year.
The governor gave a preview of what he imagines the course would look like, saying there will be instructions regarding money management, understanding debt, and how to balance a checkbook.
“This will provide a foundation for students to learn about the basics of money management, understanding debt, understanding how to balance a checkbook, understanding the fundamentals of investing. Any financial literacy has really been intertwined with economics courses, which you know, economics is a little bit different than financial literacy. And so we want a strong focus on economics, both micro and macro, but you want to also have standalone financial literacy,” DeSantis said.
The bill, or SB 1054, also received bipartisan support, as the Florida Senate carried the bill with no opposition and was co-introduced by 38 Senators.
DeSantis has been saying that Florida has become, "the Education State," and has truly emphasized this within this month. After eliminating FSA testing and replacing it with progress monitoring, the governor then put up $800 million in teacher salary raises.