Clark Howard Assigns You Personal Finance Homework


None - Thirteen states now require students to take a personal finance class in order to graduate from high school.

Georgia is not one of them.

Consumer advisor Clark Howard took a look at one class that's available in Gwinnett County, and has a summer homework assignment for students who haven't taken personal finance.

Linda Brimmer, who teaches real life at Peachtree Ridge High School in Gwinnett County, wishes a personal finance class was taught at her school. Her class covers how to make a budget, how to read a contract, and how to deal with debt. In Brimmer's class, there are lots of questions.

Student Khali Hill said, "I know some adults in my family that have problems with finances, and I'm thinking, where was this class when they were in school?"

In Georgia, students learn a little bit of personal finance as part of an economics course, but it does not require students to take a financial literacy course.

Brimmer says that's a huge mistake. "I've had a lot of AP students that will tell me, I really want to take your class, but I don't have room in my schedule," said Brimmer.

A study by the National Endowment for Financial Education shows 89 percent of teachers believe personal finance should be mandatory in schools.

But many teachers don't feel qualified to teach it. They didn't learn it either. Consumer advisor Clark Howard says he can't change state law, but he can give you some summer homework. If you have a student at home, talk with him or her about budgets. If you need help, check out the follwoing websites that can help you set up your own curriculum.

Helpful links:

1) A parent's guide for how to raise a money smart child.

2) University of California Irving offers a free online course about personal finance; access it here:

3) Khan Academy offers free online video lessons. go to: and look under this section: "finance"

4) Junior Achievement financial assessment:

5) Online activities, quizzes and calculators:

6) Personal finance online games: