Fiscal responsibility for students and parents during and after high school was the focus of a new financial literacy program offered by Glendale Unified at the Adult Recreation Center in Glendale late last month, with goals that range from saving for college to making future investments.
“We’re very proud that we’ve been able to implement financial literacy curriculum for our students in the past year,” said Glendale Unified school board member Shant Sahakian. “As we’re on this journey, we wanted to make sure that we are also providing our parents and our community with access to financial resources and knowledge.”
Glendale Unified students in the fifth, seventh and ninth grades can access financial literacy materials offered by EverFi, a provider of technology education and data analytics, and there is also a class taught by district instructors.
Some of those same students brought their parents to the event last month, which included pamphlets, informational fliers and discussions by representatives from Glendale Community College, the Los Angeles and Glendale federal credit unions, the multinational bank HSBC and insurance company AXA.
R.D. White Elementary School student Alexan Baker earned a material benefit right away — he won one of the day’s first raffles, receiving a stuffed monkey.
His father, Adam, settled for financial advice.
“We’re here to find out about the [Scholarshare] 529 College Savings program,” said Adam Baker of a California program meant to help families save and invest for higher education or career training. “It’s also good for [Alexan] to get to know a little bit about finances.”
Glendale Community College students Claudia Chacon and Leslie Campuzano attended the event as members of the school’s welcome center and provided information about classes, scheduling, financial aid and a free first year of college.
“We go to high schools, and we do fairs like these,” said Chacon, a Glendale High graduate. “It’s part of our student outreach services.”
Campuzano, a former Hoover High student, said knowing how to begin is crucial.
“Most of the time, personally, a lot of people don’t know what to ask or how to get started,” she said. “What I start with is talking to high school students who are not aware of a lot of their options, what’s free and not and a lot of info people don’t know.”
Glendale Unified interim Supt. Kelly King said she thinks the event offered a valuable opportunity.
“It’s important for all of our parents and students to learn about financial literacy, to learn about savings, credit and all those life skills that are necessary and outside the academics of traditional schools,” King said.