Demonstrates Continued Need for Education

President’s Advisory Council on Financial Literacy Chairman Charles R. Schwab, and Carrie Schwab Pomerantz of the Charles Schwab Foundation, honor students for achieving perfect scores on the National Financial Literacy Challenge on June 17, 2008.

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, COLORADO—The first-ever National Financial Literacy Challenge, a voluntary online test of personal finance knowledge sponsored by the U.S. Department of Treasury, shows a majority of high school students don’t appear to be learning or retaining the information needed to make important financial decisions. However, on a positive note, 10 high school students were recognized at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. on June 17, for achieving a perfect score of 100 percent on the test.

The winning teens, who came from all over the United States, also were congratulated by the President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy at its recent meeting.

"The Challenge has been a positive, motivational exercise for many high school students to learn about their personal finances," said Ted Beck, president and CEO of NEFE and member of the President’s Council. "I was inspired by the knowledge and leadership potential of these deserving teens."

In addition to an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., the winners will receive a $2,500 scholarship from the Charles Schwab Foundation for use at the college or university of their choice. An additional $1,000 contribution in each of the winners' names will be made to the high schools or programs that provided their personal finance education.

The goal of the National Financial Literacy Challenge is to draw attention to the need for more financial education, and to encourage educators and parents to bring lessons of personal finance into their classrooms and homes. The more than 46,000 teens across the U.S. who took the 35-question online test turned in an average score of only 56 percent. The President’s Advisory Council on Financial Literacy approved a proposal to run the Challenge again this fall, tentatively scheduled for November 3-26, 2008.

The Challenge was developed by the U.S. Department of Treasury in consultation with economists and the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy, Junior Achievement USA, the National Council on Economic Education, and the National Endowment for Financial Education.

For more on the 10 scholarship winners, click here.



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