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Financial literacy courses needed in Nebraska schools

Posted at 5:56 PM, Aug 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-08 18:56:16-04

From credit scores to student loans and mortgages, navigating the financial waters of adulthood can be choppy for recent college grads.

The uncertainty can lead to poor choices that take years to correct.

Now some Nebraska lawmakers and bankers are hoping to change that by teaching teens financial literacy before it's too late.

It's not just a problem for young adults, the Nebraska Bankers Association says it can become an issue for the state when young adults do not have the credit to purchase homes and are forced to relocate.

"The fallout from the recent great recession as well as the escalating student loan debt has really placed a lot of renewed emphasizes on the importance on financial literacy training for students," said Richard Baier.

Nebraska Bankers Association and some Nebraska lawmakers are pushing for financial literacy courses in Nebraska schools.

"95 out of our 244 school districts in the state of Nebraska currently require financial literacy class," said Baier.

"210 of the 244 offer it but don't require it," said Baier.

Nebraska Bankers Association President and Ceo Richard Baier says he's seeing a rise in young adults with bad credit, drowning in debt.

"When they think about college or acquiring their first home following graduation, it really comes to light that many of our citizens in Nebraska need to do a better job at grounding themselves in solid financial literacy principals," said Baier.

Bad credit and too much debt makes it difficult for first time home buyers, which Baier says can be bad for the state.

"By not placing them into a home it makes it easier for them to relocate, so from a state perspective, it's also important for us to start building communities and families," said Baier.

Ally Burd did not learn about personal finances until she experienced it.

"When I tried to apply for a credit card I got denied," said Ally Burd.

"Kind of just thrown to the sharks," said Burd.

That's why Baiers says we need to take proactive steps now.

"We have a good solid foundation, we just have a lot of work to do and we got to get better at it," said Baiers.

A bill to require financial literacy courses in Nebraska schools was introduced and set aside.

Nebraska Bankers Association says lawmakers will revisit the bill this fall with hopes of moving forward.