What Do Kids Know About Money?

Have you ever wondered how well high school prepared you for life?  What skill learned in high school, do you use most in your day to day activities?  I would say 'touch typing' I spend hours on the keyboard, and am touch typing right now.

Over the last ten years, the OECD has been running the 'Programme for International Student Assessment' (PISA).  It's goal is to evaluate how well schools equip students with 'the skills to achieve their full potential'. 

The results of the 2012 PISA survey have just been released.  Over half a million 15 year olds from all 65 OECD member and partner countries were surveyed.  Maths formed the largest part of the survey, with reading, science and problem solving all having smaller roles.  Making an appearance for the very first time in the survey was.... Financial Literacy

China was reported to have the most financially literate teens, however this result may have been influenced by the fact that the survey was limited to Shanghai, so did represent the entire nation. 

Adjusted relative performance showed that the Czech Republic, Australia, Russia and New Zealand, have the most financially savvy teens.  The survey found evidence that teens who held a bank account scored better than those who did not.

The survey covered a broad range of financial problems such as reading payslips, understanding invoices, and interest rates work.

Only 10% of OECD teens accurately answered advanced problems, such as calculating the balance on a bank statement.  Some countries include financial literacy in their curriculum, but this is usually on a limited basis.   Even in Shanghai, only 42% of kids were able to tackle 'level 5 problems'.

Here at the TFG, we hope that the 2015 PISA survey shows a marked improvement in financial literacy around the world.  After all, promoting literacy is one of our goals.

Want to see how well your teen would have done?  Try these sample questions  from PISA