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Use Lottery Funds

February 23, 1986

The importance of financial education was well presented by Loren Dunton in his recent piece, ("Schools Should Scrap Dull Term 'Economics,' Teach About Money," Viewpoints, Jan. 26).

As a retired business executive, I have spent a lifetime in the credit-collection field dealing with numerous financially embarrassed individuals and businesses. Many of their problems could have been avoided if these people had had a better understanding of money, its origins and uses.

The teaching of social studies and economics has long been encouraged by our state schools. But unfortunately, when many of our students get out of school they are seriously lacking in financial education. I agree with Dunton that economics comes across to many as a bewildering bundle of terms only loosely related to the everyday world. The teaching of consumer "economics" is essential but should be presented as a course explaining the principles of "money management."

Proper financial education will make for a more enlightened citizenry. It will also help avoid the personal money and bankruptcy problems that large numbers of the American public experience.

Some of the lottery funds now being made available to our schools should be funneled into programs suggested by Dunton. Basic areas of study would be budgeting, banking, use of credit, debt management, taxes, insurance, buying and selling a home, mortgages and the stock market. There should be an emphasis on household use of funds for spending, saving, borrowing and investing.

BEN BERMAN

Los Angeles

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