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Chester Jr-Sr High Scores at 100 Best W!SE High Schools Financial Literacy Ceremony

The top 100 high schools across the nation were honored April 27 for high personal finance test scores. This annual test is proctored by the W!SE Financial Literacy Program of New York, New York, and honored the top 10 schools in small, medium, and large school categories as well as the top 10 for the entire nation, regardless of school size.

For the second year in a row Chester Jr-Sr High was the only top 100 high school representing the state of Califonia. More than 75 percent of the schools in the top 100 are located on the east coast, with New York and Virginia having the most top winners.

The 2020 sponsor Voya Financial Foundation awarded Hurley High first place for small schools and the first place overall trophy, giving encouraging optimism to Chester High that the top 10 is possible for a small school.

This year’s ceremony announced that all states be graded for their efforts to mandate personal finance courses and curriculum in their graduation requirements statewide. States receiving an “A” implement stand-alone personal finance courses statewide, while those receiving B’s mandate inclusion in other courses statewide. C’s have substantive high school participation but it is left up to each district and states earning D’s offer modest levels of personal finance that are left to local direction. And F’s have no requirements at all.

Plumas Unified School District has included personal finance as a graduation requirement since 2009 in the state of California, and is a Verified Changemaker, meeting the Gold Standard from Next Generation Personal Finance, whose mission is to have all students take one semester of personal finance course before graduating high school by 2030.

Currently only one in six high schools in the public school system take at least a semester-long personal finance course that was required for graduation. Sixteen of the Chester Jr-Sr High Class of 2020 received Personal Financial Literacy Certification from W!SE Financial.

John Pelletier, director of Champlain College, Center for Financial Literacy and W!SE Board member stated, “Many U.S. adults lack basic critical personal finance skills and have little to no liquidity, more than 48 percent have no rainy day fund equaling 3 months income saved and, 40 percent could not cover a $400 emergency”.

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