Should children be taught about money?

Should children be taught about money? image

Many of us start our adult lives feeling a bit clueless when it comes to managing our money and understanding complex financial products and terminology.

That’s why there’s a clamour among some for more to be done to ensure children are given financial education at school. If young people are equipped with the right knowledge and understanding, they’ll be much more likely to make informed financial decisions early on in life and in future decades. 

So should financial education become a core part of the school curriculum? 

According to the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS), 96 per cent of teachers feel that schools should offer financial education, so there’s no question that it would be heartily welcomed by education professionals. Many teachers are also keen to start early, with almost half saying kids should be taught about money between the ages of five and seven. Meanwhile, nearly a fifth of those polled said that between eight and eleven would be a good time to begin financial education, while a quarter even thought it should start in nursery. 

So if financial education is added to the school curriculum, it’s clear that it will have the overwhelming backing of those who would be charged with delivering it. 

Pupils leaving school lacking vital financial knowledge 

Being taught about the basics of managing your finances can pay dividends throughout a person’s entire life. But more than three-quarters of teachers surveyed by MaPS said they believe most pupils finish their education without the financial knowledge they need for adulthood. 

Researchers looked into the reasons why so many students are leaving school not knowing a great deal about managing money. Unsurprisingly, nearly eight in ten teachers said it was because other subjects took priority. But worryingly, one in four said teachers don’t have enough confidence or skills to provide financial education, and a similar proportion admitted they didn’t know where to find the right support and resources. 

So while the idea of providing financial education in schools is hugely popular among teachers, there’s a challenge in that many teachers don’t currently feel they can provide it to the required standard. Basic financial literacy can give you a huge advantage in life, enabling you to understand financial products, save for the future and enjoy the kind of lifestyle you desire. Without it, you’ll be more likely to make bad financial decisions, or miss opportunities to maximise your wealth and set yourself up for the future. 

As professional financial planners, we regularly see and hear from people who feel overwhelmed and confused by financial jargon, the complexity of the market and the huge number of products and service providers out there. Lots of us simply don’t know where to start, and we’re also acutely aware that the consequences of making poor financial decisions can be massive and long-lasting. 

But help is available. 

As regulated specialists in this area, we can guide you through this confusing environment, answer your questions and help you make the best decisions for you and your family. Our advice will be based around your specific needs and goals, so you can feel confident you’re making the right choices and that you’re on the right track. 

If you have any questions about how you can make your money work harder for you, or how to increase your chances of achieving your financial and wider lifestyle goals, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us, and we’ll be happy to speak with you. 

It is important to take professional advice before making any decision relating to your personal finances. Information within this article does not provide individual tailored investment advice and is for guidance only. We cannot assume legal liability for any errors or omissions it might contain. Ethical Futures llp is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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