Students Push to Require Financial Course at West Hartford Schools

Some high school students in West Hartford want to make a course in financial literacy mandatory to graduate.

Currently, Conard and Hall High School have the course as an elective.

A petition circulating in West Hartford Public Schools is asking the Board of Education’s Curriculum Review Committee to consider making the money management course a requirement.

Armani Nieves, a junior at Hall High School in West Hartford, started the petition.

"I’m trying to make it a requirement because so many students don’t know how to manage their money, manage their credit, manage student loans, save for retirement," Nieves said.

The petition has since expanded to West Hartford's Conard High School. A total of about 1,200 students have signed the petition from both schools.

“We have to pay off our bills and if we don’t know how to do that then we won't be triumphant in our lives,” said Daniel Castillo, a Conard student.

Superintendent Thomas Moore said in a statement:

"I applaud Armani in his work on behalf of a really important subject area. We love when our students get engaged. And there’s a process we follow. We look at what are the needs and benefits of each course. And these go through a committee in the fall and winter and we look forward to hearing the recommendations if that’s the direction we would want to go. In candor, making something mandatory means every student that doesn’t take the course currently would have to give up another course in order to take Personal Finance. We have to weigh each student’s needs."

The students have not set a date of when they’ll present their recommendations to the committee. They hope it would become effective starting for the class of 2021.

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