Financial literacy is an essential life skill that public education systems have largely neglected. According to a recent survey conducted by the nonprofit group Community Financial Education Foundation (CFEF), the time for Web-based financial education has come. With its MyStartingPoint program, CFEF believes that it can deliver to an intellectually starved public.
Healthy financial habits recognized in April
April, which is officially recognized as National Financial Literacy Month, is here, which is a perfect time to teach sound financial habits to both young and old. With MyStartingPoint, the CFEF makes it clear that this is achievable through Web-based instruction that can easily be incorporated into public school curriculum.
In a poll of 6,900 MyStartingPoint software users conducted from March 29 through April 1, 2012, CFEF found that 90 percent of users support the idea of using such instruction in U.S. high schools or earlier. More than 61 percent of survey respondents believe that such financial literacy tools should be employed in elementary school. Almost 80 percent of those surveyed believe parents have failed to provide their children with effective financial education.
Never too late for MyStartingPoint
MyStartingPoint reportedly teaches meaningful financial skills that are utilized throughout one’s life. Outcome-based educational resources within the program show users how to make positive changes immediately. When employed without lapse, a lifetime of financial health is possible.
Delivering financial literacy lessons via the World Wide Web caters to the way many people prefer to learn today. More than 70 percent of CFEF survey respondents confirmed this, noting that the Web is their preferred delivery platform for financial news and information.
“The Internet seems to breathe life into the materials,” said one survey participant.
Stephen Brobeck, Executive Director of the Consumer Federation of America, concurred with this opinion.
“Financial information has to be lively and in marketing language that people have become used to,” Brobeck stated.
A starting point for understanding basic principles
Various financial literacy studies note that once consumers have a clear view of their financial options – particularly which consumer credit tools are available and when they should and should not be used – they are able to use their money in an intelligent manner that benefits their lives, the lives of their families and their careers.
MyStartingPoint can help provide that clarity, notes CFEF Executive Director Jane DeMarines. Understanding basic financial principles, loan terms, personal banking, investing and the nature of revolving credit are highlighted through simple lessons and tools that promote savings and responsible use of credit. Users can even customize MyStartingPoint depending upon financial starting point.