Education officials should not weaken financial education requirement  • Oregon Capital Chronicle:

Oregon has finally caught up to the many other states that require high school students to pass a personal finance course as a graduation requirement with a  landmark bill that passed the Legislature and was signed by Gov. Tina Kotek in 2023.

Senate Bill 3 requires students to take lessons in personal finance and career preparation to graduate by 2027, but today, as the Oregon Board of Education is adopting rules for implementing the requirement, officials appear poised to dismantle the intent of the law by not requiring schools to provide students with a dedicated personal finance class at all.

The Department of Education has recommended that schools be allowed to not offer a stand-alone class in personal finance and instead use existing courses in other subjects to include various personal finance standards. The board may finalize the rule by next month.

This clearly contradicts both the overwhelming intent of the Legislature as well as the language used in the legislation itself. Throughout public testimony on the bill before the Senate Education Committee, legislators and advocates universally referenced the need for financial literacy “courses.”  The testimony was clear that only a comprehensive course in managing personal finances would meet the new requirement and provide our children with the tools they need to be successful as adults. Numerous teachers testified, strongly urging the Legislature to enact a universal requirement.

That the Oregon Department of Education is terrible at what they do should surprise no one who has paid any attention or who knows anything about Oregon state government.