Politics & Government

Kansas legislator says classes on money should be required

TOPEKA - It's easier for many adults to talk to children about sex than about money.

"The only greater taboo for conversation than sex is money," noted Philip Heckman, Youth Programs director for the Center for Personal Finance, which is affiliated with Credit Union National Association Inc.

Given Americans' increasing debt load and the subprime mortgage problems, maybe it's just as well parents aren't teaching their children about money, he said.

While working on consumer protection issues, state Rep. Melody McCray-Miller, D-Park City, said she frequently heard, "We need to be educating our young people about this so they won't get into this situation."

That situation could be anything from mounting credit card debt or payday loans that spiral out of control to people getting unaffordable mortgages or just not saving money.

"Bad debt is a drag, and we are seeing that firsthand nationally. Instead of being a debtor nation we need to be educated," Miller said.

She is developing a proposal to ensure that Kansas children in kindergarten through 12th grade would learn personal financial literacy. Ideally, she would like to see a financial literacy component be required for graduation in the state, but she is still working out the details of the proposal.

The bill would need to be approved by the Kansas Legislature, which convenes Jan. 12.

Red the complete story at kansas.com

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