Decatur Students Complete Financial Literacy Program

Decatur Students Complete Financial Literacy Program

BERLIN – Students at Stephen Decatur High School learned about everything from budgeting to buying cars in a financial course, sponsored by the Bank of Ocean City.

On May 1, students in teacher Kurt Marx’s finance and economics classes were recognized for completing the EverFi Financial Literacy program. The program is offered twice a year at Stephen Decatur High and will soon be offered at Worcester Preparatory School.

“I feel every student should take a financial literacy class prior to graduating high school,” said Earl Conley, assistant vice president at the Bank of Ocean City. “Prices have gone up. Incomes have not. It’s important to be able to budget.”

Students spent several hours completing online lessons designed to cover a variety of financial topics.

“EverFi covers everything in financial literacy from insurance and taxes to credit scores,” student Dalton Warren said. “I think it should be necessary for every student.”

Some of Marx’s students were surprised to learn about depreciation. Others were intrigued by the differences between debit and credit cards. Warren said he found the information regarding investing interesting. Before taking part in the EverFi program, Warren didn’t realize the risk involved in investing varied with age.

“As you age, your money should be placed in safer investing vehicles, such as bonds and money market accounts,” he said.

Warren added that those who lost their life savings when the stock market collapsed would have benefited from that knowledge.

“If these individuals were taught financial literacy as teenagers and had healthy money habits as they aged would their dimming futures be so financially bleak?” he said. “I believe not.”

Conley said it was important for the students to learn the value of budgeting, particularly as they prepared to leave home to attend college. He reminded them to spend their money wisely and to avoid accumulating credit card debt, as that could hurt them in the future when they applied for loans.

“If you run up credit card debt, they’re going to see you as a risky person,” he said.

He advised the teenagers to start practicing budgeting now so they would get the hang of it before they left home.

“Make sure you look at your wants and needs,” he said.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.