Newsom Signs Law Requiring Financial Literacy for High Schoolers

On Saturday, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 2927 into law. The bill requires all public school students to complete a personal finance course before graduating high school. The requirement takes effect in 2030-31, but all high schools must make a personal finance course available by 2026-27.

Personal finance course-takers can expect to learn how to balance a checkbook and avoid unnecessary credit card debt, how college grants and loans work, how tax rates are structured, and the benefits of different types of insurance.

California is the 26th state to pass a requirement like this, but that number is expected to grow. Over 85% of Americans say they favor personal finance as a high school requisite. Research from Next Gen Personal Finance (NGPF) shows students who take the course experience a $127,000 benefit over their lifetime.

“Financial literacy is a critical tool that pays dividends for a lifetime,” said Senate President pro Tempore Mike McGuire (D-North Coast). “There’s a wealth of data about the benefits of learning these valuable lessons in high school, from improving credit scores and reducing default rates to increasing the likelihood that our future generations will maintain three months of savings for emergencies and have at least one kind of retirement account.”

Tim Ranzetta, co-founder of NGPF and lead proponent of the Californians for Financial Education initiative campaign, issued the following statement:

“We commend Governor Newsom, Senate President pro Tem McGuire, Speaker Rivas, and the bill’s authors and supporters for their leadership and commitment to guaranteeing access to one semester personal finance education for every California student. We look forward to supporting the implementation of this essential course.”


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