Penn-Trafford District students who are preparing to graduate have several more requirements to check off their list before they graduate.
Students must complete 4 credits of English, 3.5 credits of social studies, 3 or 4 math courses, 3 or 4 science courses, 2 credits of humanities, 1 credit of physical education -physical, 0.5 health credit and 1 credit Keystone assessment eligible for graduation.
They will soon have another requirement — career and personal finance classes, which focus on mentoring young people on how to make smart financial choices for their futures.
School board members approved a personal finance course this week as an addition to graduation requirements, starting with the Class of 2025.
The program will meet the State Academic Standards for Career Education and Work, a requirement of the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
High school principal Tony Aquilio said the program has been “revamped” from its origins as an elective, previously taught by Dennis Kosoglow for the past 20 years.
“We had a class before, and now we have updated it. Now, it’s in demand,” Aquilio said. “We feel it is important for our children to leave high school with knowledge of the risk factors of financing, housing, banking, online banking, credit card fraud, the basics of personal banking to real estate investing. and risk factors. “
Kosoglow’s original curriculum will be canceled and split into two semesters. The first semester will be the required course, and the second semester will be for students who are interested in digging deeper.
“Our thought process is that, at this point, it’s just an election process, and the material (Kosoglow) teaches and the content it teaches is very relevant to children, our idea is that every child has to go through it. It’s a kind of teaching,” said Aquilio.
The mandatory version of the course is aimed at juniors and seniors, Aquilio said.
“For the kids who already think they know what they want to take next year, we’re going to offer an online version and an online version in the summer,” Aquilio said. “If they create their schedule in January and say they didn’t plan to take that course, we’ll offer an alternative to make sure it doesn’t conflict with a regularly scheduled class.”
Kosoglow hopes that taking the class to older students will help provide them with useful information when they are more ready to understand it.
“They have a better understanding of money, most of them have made some level of money at that point, and they’re looking at what’s going to happen after high school,” he said. “I give credit to our guidance department and administration for making me think about what I want to do.”
Kosoglow ensures classroom success by focusing on students. He begins the first day of school by talking to the students about their ideas and hopes for the future.
“They commit to the program because they feel it’s 120% applicable in the real world,” he said. “We look at their personal aspirations and dreams, their goals of what they want in life, and measure that against their skills and attitudes about certain subjects. Then we can design the program around them. “
Students follow their financial lives throughout the course, learning and practicing the skills needed to create a resume, budget, simulate banking and investing, and anticipate retirement. even milk.
“When we look at the average adult, and they reflect on some of the things they buy, a lot of people wish they could choose differently,” Kosoglow said, adding that students are often surprised to learn about their spending habits through the budget.
“Even parents wish they had this kind of education when they were in school.”
Julia Maruca is a staff writer for the Tribune-Review. You can contact Julia at [email protected]