Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be an adult? Ever panicked at the thought of someday buying a car, held back tears at the thought of funding college, or just started plain-out crying when you realized you would have to eventually learn to fill out your tax returns? Well, never fear, there’s a class at AHS all about personal finances! The well-named Personal Finance class is a PCC Dual Credit class that can simultaneously get you one free college credit, as well as 0.5 AHS applied arts credit, with no prerequisites required to take the class.
“I took this class because I don’t really know much about what I’ll do for financial matters outside of school,” said Chris Ercolani, a senior. “I don’t know how much apartments cost, I don’t know how much [a good salary is], you could say you make $10,000 annually and [I have no context for that amount]. Topics studied in the class include: planning careers, buying a car, filing taxes, money management and banking, credit and credit reports, getting an apartment, and basic economics. (Aloha High School 2017-2018 Programing Guide)
“We do a variety of things, everything from insurance, to taxes, to credit cards, apartments, post-high school planning,” stated Personal Finance Teacher Stacy Mix. “My goal is that students will feel at ease and well prepared [in the real world, and have] a strong foundation in financial planning and literacy… so [that] when they’re on their own, they’ll be able to make wise choices.”
Some readers may fret over the difficulty level of the class: credit? Filing taxes? Planning careers? We also wondered if the topics studied would make this a tough course. “I give students opportunities to use notes in the class,” stated Mix, “[Students] also can retake tests, because my goal is that they will have full knowledge of what they learn in here.”
Senior Rachel Jenkins stated, “Basically, everyone I know who’s graduated has told me to take this class… Everything [you learn] in the class, you use in real life.”
In the end: is Personal Finance a good class to take? One student says his opinion rather bluntly. “I’d like to afford an apartment,” says Ercolani. “or else I’d be living nowhere.”
Note: Answers have been edited for length and/or clarity.