The financial education bill failed on the Senate floor

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OLYMPIA — A bill requiring students to graduate with a financial literacy class ultimately failed by the time the Washington Legislature closed its 2024 session this week.
The bill drastically changed on the Senate floor on Feb. 29, when Sen. Lisa Wellman, D-Mercer Island, introduced an amendment that removed the graduation requirement.
The House unanimously passed a version of the bill on Feb. 8 that made the course a requirement for high school students set to graduate in 2031.
When the bill reached the Senate floor on Feb. 29, Wellman removed the graduation requirement and changed it to require the course be offered in every district by the 2027-28 school year.
She thought it would be better for these courses to be offered as a prerequisite in every school before making it a graduation requirement.
“I didn’t want to throw this at the schools this year and say: Here’s a graduation requirement,” Wellman said.
AdvertisingCurrent law requires schools to provide students with financial education, but students aren’t required to take these classes.
On Feb. 12, the bill passed through the Senate’s education committee, on which Wellman serves as chair.
Rude says he wouldn’t be able to support the bill if the graduation requirement is removed.
According to Rude, House Democrats and Republicans, with more than 55 initial sponsors, and Senate Republicans were all aligned with making financial education a graduation requirement, and Rude said Senate Democrats were the only caucus raising concerns.

OLYMPIA – By the time the Washington Legislature adjourned its 2024 session this week, a bill mandating that graduates take a financial literacy course had finally failed.

On February 2, the Senate floor saw significant changes to the bill. 29, the moment Sen. Mercer Island Democrat Lisa Wellman proposed a bill that did away with the graduation requirement.

Rep. claimed that the bill would accomplish nothing if the graduation requirement was removed because that is essentially what it was intended to accomplish. In a recent interview, House Bill 1915’s principal sponsor, Walla Walla Republican Skyler Rude, stated.

On February, a version of the bill was unanimously passed by the House. 8 that mandated the course for high school students planning to graduate in 2031. 47 percent of adults do not have money set aside for unforeseen expenses, per a 2021 study conducted by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation.

On February 2, the bill was brought to the Senate floor. 29, Wellman amended the requirement to mandate that the course be offered in every district by the 2027–2028 academic year, replacing the previous requirement of graduation. Until these courses become a graduation requirement, she believed it would be preferable for them to be offered as prerequisites in every school.

“This year, I didn’t want to throw this at the schools and say, ‘Here’s a graduation requirement, said Wellman.

Promotion.

The current legislation mandates that financial education be taught in schools, but attendance in these classes is not mandatory for students.

On Feb. 12. The Senate’s education committee, which Wellman chairs, approved the bill. She claimed there wasn’t enough time, so she didn’t introduce the amendment earlier in the procedure.

The bill was approved 47-1 in the Senate after the amendment was accepted on the floor. Sen. The lone “no” vote came from Auburn Republican Phil Fortunato.

If the graduation requirement is removed, Rude says he would be unable to support the bill.

It was Rude’s assertion that Senate Democrats were the only caucus voicing concerns, while House Democrats and Republicans, with over fifty-five original sponsors, and Senate Republicans were in agreement on making financial education a graduation requirement.

Rude expressed his hope that there would be a way for them to continue pursuing the graduation requirements.

This report included material from the archives of The Seattle Times.

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