Teen Financial Education

Results recently released from National Endowment for Financial Education show that 40% percent of U.S. students from lower-income schools lack even basic financial literacy skills and only 3% of these students scored high on the financial literacy scale.  The report stresses that these teens are not being afforded proper financial education in high school.  Accordingly, agencies such as Communities In Schools and Teach For America stress the need to have regular, meaningful interactions to teach teenagers the fundamentals of money management, credit and predatory practices. 

Beginning with the 2017/2018 school year, Common Wealth Charlotte is expanding its trauma-informed financial education services for at-risk high school teens at Title 1 schools.  Through strategic partnerships with Communities-In-Schools, Teach For America and Right Moves For Youth, CWC will take its services into the classroom and various after-school programs.  In addition, CWC has strong teen financial programs serving Jail North, Goodwill and Behailu Academy.

40% of U.S. students from lower-income schools lack basic financial literacy skills.

Only 3% of students scored "high" in financial literacy testing.

Using a bank account--and particularly, a savings account--helps even young children learn about saving and spending.

National Endowment for Financial Education


CWC's Teen Financial Education modules involve two distinct levels:

The Financial Empowerment Workshop focuses on relationship building, guided imagery and storytelling, exploring financial security, barriers to success, dollar value of work, budget stretching techniques, and credit reports.

Advanced Financial one-to-one sessions focus on creating and reviewing a hypothetical balanced spending plan, a deep-dive into the teenager's credit report, identifying fraudulent use teen's identity by family members, recognizing the high cost of predatory financial products, and banking with a non-predatory financial institution.  Trained volunteers are utilized to supplement the work of the Financial Empowerment workshop and Advanced Financial staff members, and to create a long term relationship with each teenager and adult.

Austin Webster "Financial literacy is absent from the curriculum at most Title 1 high schools and middle schools. Common Wealth Charlotte is bridging that gap with its trauma-informed education, tailored specifically to teens. This is an enormous step that will pay huge dividends for these teens."

Austin Webster
Teach for America Instructor, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools