Thanks to John Pelletier, who joined me recently on the NGPF Podcast show to discuss national trends in personal finance education and a solution to the professional development needs of high school instructors.  Embarking on a second career with a mission to improve the financial literacy of young adults in Vermont, John has had a tremendous impact on creating a national dialogue on what the key ingredients of a personal finance program should look like.

Among John’s many awards, he was recently selected as the 2015 Financial Literacy Champion by the Vermont JumpStart Coalition.  Included in this broad-ranging discussion, John shares the “hot off the press” results of his biennial Report Card which evaluates state-level efforts to improve financial literacy in high schools.  Enjoy!


0:30: How did a Duke law graduate with 20 years in the asset management industry end up starting up a financial literacy center at Champlain College in Burlington, VT?  

3:15: Discusses Vermont Summit as launch pad for financial literacy efforts within the state

4:30: Discusses Financial Literacy Summer Institute pilot program held at Champlain College

12:00: Philosophy of Summer Institute pilot for teachers; gaps that training filled

19:00: Costs to run a Summer Institute

20:55: Why John added student loans training module for the teachers in the third year of institute

22:30: John discusses 2015 National Report Card on State Efforts To Improve Financial Literacy in High Schools and factors that go into the grades given to each state

27:15: How are we doing as a nation when it comes to personal finance based on your research?

28:00: Examples of states (Alabama and Florida) that have made changes at the state level to improve their grades

30:00: Research found that the more local control at the district level the less likely it is that a state will mandate that personal finance be taught

31:00: States doing an excellent job in training teachers (Utah)

34:00: Why does Utah have such a concerted effort to teach high school students financial literacy?

35:50: How to pitch a school board to increase commitment to personal finance

38:35: Why student loans and college financing issues are not incorporated in national standards for financial literacy

43:00: Discusses shortcomings in entrance counseling process

45:45: What concepts would you teach high school seniors about personal finance if you only had 45 minutes?


Show notes: