High school students are logging online to take the National Financial Capability Challenge and prove their knowledge of saving, budgeting and investing. Designed to improve the financial capabilities of American students, the voluntary online exam was made available yesterday and will be accessible through April 8.
"All of us—parents, educators, policymakers and students—share the responsibility to ensure that young people in our country learn a set of practical skills that will help them navigate important personal financial decisions," said Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner in a statement. "This challenge will help students understand basic finance. It will help them understand what it means to save for retirement. And it will help them understand the risks and benefits associated with debt from things like car loans and credit cards. Empowering students with this knowledge is important for the long-term strength of our economy."
The Department of Treasury posted an educator toolkit at Challenge.Treas.gov last month to assist teachers in preparing students for the exam.
Later this spring, the highest scoring students out of those in the eligible 13 to 19-year-old range will be honored at a national awards ceremony in Washington, D.C.
"Our goal is for every student in the nation to get a world class, well-rounded education," said Education Secretary Arne Duncan in a statement, "and that includes preparing them to make critical financial decisions. I hope the challenge not only helps high school students get smart about money, but encourages more states and schools to make financial education a priority in classrooms as early as kindergarten."