SUMMARY OF GRADE
Requires American History: The Founding Principles, Civics and Economics for high school graduation, which has financial literacy standards
K-12 financial literacy standards
AN IN-DEPTH LOOK
North Carolina requires all students to take the course American History: The Founding Principles, Civics and Economics for a high school diploma, either as a one credit course or as two separate half-credit courses. There are ten Essential Standards for the course, two of which are Personal Finance. There are also eleven Clarifying Objects under the Personal Finance standards. The appendix for the course states that the standards align with “the National Standards of Personal Financial Literacy” and the “course seeks to address the Session Law 2005-276, Section 7.59 amendment to G.S. 115C-81 that requires public schools to provide instruction in personal financial literacy for all high school students and the North Carolina State Board of Education’s decision that personal financial literacy standards be integrated in the American History: The Founding Principles, Civics and Economics courses.” This required course therefore ensures students receive financial literacy instruction prior to high school graduation.
2017 Chapter 126 (House Bill 135) requires that “instruction shall be provided in personal financial literacy for all students.” Financial literacy is embedded in North Carolina’s K-12 Social Studies standards. The Economic and Financial Literacy strand is in each grade’s North Carolina Social Studies Essential Standards, with specific standards and Clarifying Objectives. The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction also provides Social Studies Unpacking Standards and Crosswalks which provide further clarification and resources for each grade’s standards.
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction website has a page dedicated to Personal Financial Literacy. It provides Resources, Best Practices, Curriculum Options, and Financial Webinets for elementary, middle, and secondary grades. The page also provides resources and information for students and parents and community members. North Carolina also has a legislated Financial Literacy Council to “monitor and assist the Department of Public Instruction in the coordination of statewide delivery of financial education within the public-school system,” amongst other duties.
Because it delivers financial literacy instruction in each grade, K-12, but through separate standards and an embedded high school course, American History: The Founding Principles, Civics and Economics, North Carolina receives a “B.” North Carolina has made notable efforts towards financial literacy instruction through its legislated Financial Literacy Council. However, North Carolina must require a stand-alone personal finance course for high school graduation to ensure financial literacy instruction in high school and receive an “A.”