Financial Planning Days

What is the National Financial Capability Challenge?

The National Financial Capability Challenge is an awards program designed to increase the financial knowledge and capability of high school aged youth across the United States so they can take control over their financial futures. It challenges high school teachers and other educators to teach the basics of personal finance to their students, and rewards students, educators, schools, and states for their participation and their success. Educators and top-scoring students will receive award certificates, and schools and states with the highest participation rates will earn special distinction.

Why is financial capability important?

The recent economic crisis and the increasing complexity of our financial system make it clear that strengthening the financial knowledge and skills of our young people is critical to their future success and to the future financial stability of our country. To better navigate their financial futures and be prepared to make smart choices, students need to learn more about earning and spending, saving and investing, using credit wisely, avoiding fraud, paying for college, and more.

Who can participate?

All high school teachers and other educators working with U.S. high-school aged students (ages 13-19) are encouraged to register for the Challenge, download the Educator Toolkit, prepare their students, and administer the online exam. Educators who have been teaching students about personal finance for years as well as those who never have before are urged to join this national initiative.

How does the challenge work?

This is a free program.

Registration: Educators are encouraged to go to to sign up.
Educator Toolkit: Educators will have access to a free Educator Toolkit that includes ready-to-use lesson plans (in PDF format) that cover all the core concepts students need to learn to take the Challenge. Educators are encouraged to use whichever modules they like, use other existing resources, or create their own innovative approaches to teaching these concepts in an effort to help students increase their financial capability.
Best Practices: Throughout the Challenge period and beyond, we encourage educators to share ideas and suggestions about effective ways that they have found to help increase their students’ financial capability.
Challenge Exam: The Challenge online exam, which is designed to illustrate the relevance of financial topics to students, as well as to assess their learning, will be offered from March 7 – April 8, 2011. It took the average student less than 30 minutes to complete. Over 76,000 students participated in the spring of 2010.
Awards Program: The top two scorers at each school, plus all students scoring in the top 20%, will receive National Financial Capability Challenge Award Certificates. All participating educators will receive an official certificate, and educators from schools and states with the highest proportion of participating students will be recognized as well.
Educators – Sign up now to be part of the Challenge

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