A Teacher Town Hall meeting with Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell put the Fed’s Economic Education program in the national spotlight. The Sept. 28 event invited educators to discuss economic education and monetary policy with fellow teachers and Federal Reserve Bank employees.
Close to 3,000 educators tuned into the Town Hall with questions for Chairman Powell. He thanked the teachers for providing such a valuable service to their communities.
One teacher asked what is the most important thing that students should be learning about the economy? He said everyone should take an economics class at some point in their education journey.
“Economics is highly relevant to public policy,” he said. “I encourage everyone to take macro and microeconomics.”
Powell also advised the attendees to never stop learning, no matter how old you are.
“The world changes so quickly, you need to keep learning, keep reading, keep thinking,” he said. “Set high standards for yourself and believe in yourself.”
For more on the teacher town hall, click here: External LinkWelcoming remarks by Chair Powell at Conversation with the Chair: A Teacher Town Hall Meeting - Federal Reserve Board
Educators from around the District talk about the current school year.
Part of the Bank’s mission is to offer free economic and personal finance resources to educators, bankers and consumers. Many of the teachers in the district regularly use the Kansas City Fed’s resources on a regular basis in their economics and finance courses.
During the past year, the Kansas City Fed interacted with more than 2,800 students, held 78 events across six states and more than 11,200 education resources were downloaded. Some of those economic education teachers told us what they are focusing on in the classrooms this fall.
Melissa Schram teaches Personal Finance and A.P. Microeconomics at Millard West High School in Nebraska. At this point in the school year, she is busy learning about the students and what they are interested in learning about. Personal Finance is required for graduation, but she does ask her microeconomics students why they decided to take this class.
“Some are taking the class because they are interested in it, some to receive dual-enrollment credit and others because they plan to study a related topic in the future,” she said.
Why the Tenth District believes economic education is so important.
Gigi Wolf is the Lead Education Outreach Specialist at the Kansas City Fed. She said the more educated kids are about how the economy works and how to manage money, the more informed they can be as consumers.
“Economics and personal finance are part of our daily lives,” Wolf said. “Whether we are consuming goods in the market or using bank services to manage our money, it’s all around us.:
Carrie Hixon echoes that statement. She has taught Personal Finance for 17 years in the Mustang Public School District in Oklahoma. In addition to the required studies, she helps the students make personal choices as it relates to financial stability. She said there is often not a right or wrong answer.
“My goal is to help them gain knowledge in this class that will help them make the best decisions for reaching their own personal goals, both now and in the future,” Hixon said.
Over in the Denver Public Schools, East High School teacher Rex Frerichs is focusing on a bit of everything in his economics class.
“This year at East we are working on safety, relationships, and specifically in my AP Economics class I am focusing on improving our FRQ (free response questions) scores.”
Wolf added that the Fed continues to develop new educational resources to support economics, personal finance and career readiness instruction.
“We also look for ways to support students and teachers through programs like workshops, conferences, and community partner events,” she added. “We are moving towards providing more culturally relevant and responsive resources that will speak to the diverse audiences we serve.”
For more information on how the KC Fed supports economic education, click on this link: External LinkEducation - Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City (kansascityfed.org)