California to Require Financial Literacy Course

California has become the 26 state that requires high school students to take a financial literacy course.

Although the course will be offered by the 2027-28 school year, students graduating high school in the 2030-31 school year will be the first class with the requirement.

The bill, AB 2927, adds the “completion of a separate, stand-alone one-semester course in personal finance, that is prohibited from being combined with any other course, to the graduation requirements commencing with pupils graduating in the 2030–31 school year, including for pupils enrolled in a charter school.”

“We need to help Californians prepare for their financial futures as early as possible. Saving for the future, making investments, and spending wisely are lifelong skills that young adults need to learn before they start their careers, not after,” Governor Gavin Newsom (D) said in a press release.

The cost to implement the course could be up to almost $200 million a year, according to a Senate Appropriations Committee analysis.

The analysis explained: “Assuming a salary range of $100,000 to $150,000 (including benefits) for one credentialed teacher at each of the state’s 1,300 high schools, the Proposition 98 General Fund costs would be $130 million to $195 million each year.”

States that require a personal finance class for high school students include Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and California.