The general consensus of why schools don’t teach students about taxes is because there are too many variables when reporting income. People file taxes differently and it is considered impractical to teach students about this topic.
There is a controversy around the issue of teaching taxes in schools. Some people feel that schools should be teaching students how to file income taxes. Others think that it is impractical to teach about this topic since filing income taxes can be different for everyone. The number one reason why schools don’t teach students about filing taxes is that too many people require a different process to file income taxes correctly.
Since teachers are not tax professionals, covering this topic in schools appears to be too complex. Instead, schools focus on subjects like reading and math that provide students the skills necessary to learn about taxes on their own. Nonetheless, there is a current push toward educating students about personal finances. Many feel students need to learn the basics about money and taxes to prepare them for adulthood.
What Does Financial Literacy Mean?
Financial literacy refers to the understanding of how to effectively use knowledge about money to secure a stable life. The term covers investing, financial management, budgeting, and other concepts necessary to thrive in any economy. A person who is financially literate has a higher potential to have a successful life founded on monetary stability. It is a skill that continues to evolve during one’s lifetime and is considered helpful when acquired early in life.
Financial literacy is an ongoing process that continues to evolve at different stages of life. As the world creates new resources such as digital currency, financial literacy is in continual change. Each day, people have to make choices that will have some degree of financial impact. Being financially literate allows a person to use basic concepts to adapt to our ever-changing economy.
Schools and communities are starting to realize the importance of teaching students how to have the financial literacy necessary to thrive as young adults. Even teenagers who receive payment for their work are ready to start implementing financial concepts that will help them become responsible members of society.
Why Don’t Schools Teach About Financial Literacy?
The National Financial Educators Council has researched this topic very well as more Americans seem to find themselves in overwhelming debt. The organization is interested in figuring out a way for schools to start teaching about personal finances instead of blaming anyone for the current lack of this type of education.
There are many speculations about why schools don’t teach about financial literacy. The most prominent reason is that educators have not recognized the need to teach about personal financing until now. Financial literacy is now beginning to become one of the core skills necessary to succeed in our modern world.
As money is one of the most important commodities in our lives, parents and schools are now encouraged to make financial literacy part of a child’s academic development. Teaching financial literacy to students is quickly gaining momentum as millennials are becoming interested in developing businesses from an early age.
The traditional school curriculum is changing to cater to the needs of our modern world. Technology is also playing a major role in how we conduct our financial lives. Becoming financially literate is becoming easier as various software assists people in creating budgets, tracking expenses, participating in investments, and more.
Should Schools Teach Kids How to File Taxes?
Educational leaders are beginning to gain interest in teaching students how to file taxes and manage their personal finances. Some educators feel that since the IRS provides instructions on completing tax forms, it is unnecessary for students to learn the topic in school. Also, because IRS regulations change frequently, schools would struggle to stay current with the latest tax information.
When filing taxes, individuals often seek the assistance of tax professionals who are able to fully guide them with the latest tax information and ensure they file their taxes accurately. Because tax filers have unique circumstances, teaching a general course about taxes appears not to be the best option. In addition, the IRS offers assistance on the phone and other mediums where their representatives help individuals find answers to all their questions.
Those that are proponents of tax education in schools want to see students being taught basic tax information and the fundamentals of personal finance. Teaching the importance of financial responsibility can start early. Teaching basic financial skills in high school seems very appropriate since the working-age starts at 16 years old.
Both schools and other organizations are starting to implement programs that help students become familiar with the financial responsibility they will soon face as adults. At the very least, educators and the community feel students should be able to balance a checkbook and know the basics of income tax filing.
Why Teach Students About Taxes?
Learning the fundamentals of taxes provides students with a good foundation for financial well-being. After high school graduation, many students will have to find jobs and live on their own. Even those that don’t have to work and can go straight to college will have to learn how to budget their finances on university campuses.
It appears that personal finances and taxes are much more important topics than other subjects taught in school. Teaching taxes in schools would help advance adolescent brain development to better prepare students for the real world. Although schools may not be able to provide concrete instructions as the IRS or a tax professional can, they are still able to teach basic concepts that help students be more prepared for work and tax filing.
The more equipped we make students, the higher the chances of them becoming productive adults that make sound financial decisions. Knowing the basics of taxes and money management allows individuals to quickly climb up the financial ladder and improve society as a whole. The United States allows individuals to start working at age 16, which makes high school and even elementary school an ideal setting for learning about personal finances.
Students Win in Life With Personal Finance Education
When students understand the importance of investing and saving, they are able to build a strong foundation for their futures. Researchers analyzed students’ behavioral changes through real-world simulations. Students that participated in financial education training were able to create a budget successfully after only 12 weeks (National Bureau of Economic Research 2022). That is only three months of training, which makes a big difference in a student’s financial knowledge. We can imagine the benefits of a whole semester or even a year dedicated to financial education.
Students that receive financial education in school grow up to be adults that are steps ahead of their peers. With money being one of the most important aspects of our lives, it is best to teach children about money from a very early age. Even the process of setting up a lemonade stand teaches them the basic concepts of supply and demand along with the financial transactions necessary to create a profitable system.
No matter what path students take in their careers, financial education is going to be at the center of their lives. It is a topic that applies to everyone, at any stage of their life, and anywhere in the world. Investing time and effort in educating students about personal finances ensures a bright future for us all.
Young Adults That Don’t Receive Personal Financial Education Suffer
Once a student graduates high school and is thrown into the real world, he/she has great financial responsibilities. Whether they become full-time college students or enter the workforce, young adults will have to navigate through crucial financial decisions that can impact the rest of their lives.
Learning how to manage personal finances in school helps young adults look after their credit scores, invest and save, make correct debt choices, and make many other crucial decisions to build a strong financial future. It is challenging enough to become an adult and enter the workforce while balancing personal responsibilities. Students who become financially literate have a better chance at success in any path they choose. This is why financial education is becoming an integral part of schools and community organizations.
What is the Percentage of Schools that Teach Taxes?
In the United States, it is estimated that only 12% of schools teach personal finances. This includes both elementary and high schools. A 2016 PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) study indicates that approximately 78% of teachers feel they need a strong financial curriculum (EducationWeek 2022). At home, parents are also starting to realize the importance of teaching their kids about finances and requesting that schools take more interest in the topic. It is estimated that more schools are going to get involved in teaching about money, which will increase the percentage of schools that teach about taxes.
Why does no one teach you how do you do taxes?
There are many reasons why schools don’t teach students about taxes. The main reason is that filing income taxes accurately depends on various elements unique to the individual. Schools have difficulty keeping up with current tax information and it becomes impractical to teach students how to file their taxes correctly. Some people feel that students should be at least taught the basics of income taxes and personal finances.
Why don’t schools teach about money?
Although personal financing is an important part of everyone’s lives, schools are just starting to take interest in teaching students about money. Traditionally, personal finance has been a topic learned during adulthood once a person enters the workforce.