A better education starts with teaching students the skills that will have long-term benefits. Despite common misconceptions, tax forms aren’t extremely difficult to figure out. To remedy this issue, teachers need to be willing to take the time to explain the process, but that can’t happen if educators aren’t motivated to incorporate basic financial skills into curricula.
Only 12 percent of elementary and high school classes currently teach forms of financial education, and 78 percent of teachers believe they need more appropriate financial curriculum, according to a 2016 study from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), a tax and consulting service.
“Educators see the value of teaching students to budget, prepare for the future and become better financial decision makers,” according to the same study. “But educators need more support to adequately teach these skills.”
Some people argue that there are more important financial skills that should be taught in schools, like managing credit card debt or establishing a retirement plan, especially because taxes only have to be filed once a year.
This may be true, but learning to do taxes not only saves time and stress, but it can save a significant amount of money over a lifetime. Paying a tax preparer for a standard 1040 form averages anywhere from $152 to $261, and possibly more depending on the form you need, according to the IRS.
Free Resources by PwC
Access Your Potential® is focused on equipping students with the technology, financial and career skills they need to succeed. That’s why we’ve created technology skills and financial literacy curricula that are free for all to use. Please download, teach and share with others
The wealth gap in the United States is threatening Americans’ aspirations for social advancement and equal opportunity. Minorities, women and the least educated have some of the lowest financial literacy rates in the nation, a major concern for businesses that see attracting a more diverse workforce as a business imperative.
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