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Assemblymember Kevin McCarty introduces bill requiring high school students to take a financial literacy class

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento) has introduced AB 984. This bill will require public high schools, including charter schools, to offer a personal finance course.

Research shows U.S. teens and Gen Z aged youth demonstrate a significant lack of understanding of basic financial terms and concepts. 34% of youth are learning personal finance from TikTok or other social media platforms, and 32% of teens can’t tell the difference between a debit card and a credit card.

“Financial literacy is a necessity for CA students. Most go into college without any knowledge of personal finance. This is a time where students are bombarded with credit card offers which can lead to thousands of dollars in debt. Taking a finance class in high school can help students make smart money decisions that will benefit them beyond college,” said Assemblymember McCarty.

High school students would be required to complete a one semester course of a financial literacy class. This course could be an already existing finance class that meets the A-G requirements of the University of California and the California State University or a locally developed class approved by the school district or charter school.

The course will be a graduation requirement starting the 2025-26 school year.


Kevin McCarty represents California’s 6th Assembly District, which includes the city of Sacramento, and parts of unincorporated Sacramento County. McCarty serves as Chair of the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance. Website of Assemblymember Kevin McCarty: