Being young and broke sucks. Between repaying student loan debt and making rent each month, saving money after post-secondary school is simply out of reach for many Ontarians. However, Generation Z kids could stand to be better prepared for the financial pitfalls of early adulthood, thanks to major changes coming to the Ontario Grade 10 career studies curriculum.
The new mandatory Grade 10 curriculum will teach students more about financial literacy. This includes lessons on budgeting skills, paying bills on time, using credit responsibly and payment options for postsecondary school. Education Minister Stephen Lecce unveiled the new lesson plan on Tuesday at Toronto’s York University.
"Our mission is to ensure that our young people are better prepared to transition from the journey of learning seamlessly into the workforce," said Stephen Lecce in a government of Ontario press release. "With an emphasis on STEM, financial literacy, and transferable skills, we are better aligning our curriculum with the labour market, to ensure our young people can optimize their skills and get access to good-paying jobs."
According to CityNews, the mandatory class will help students zero in on “monetizable skills” while putting a strong focus on “the jobs of the future,” especially for those in engineering, math, science, and technology.
It will also teach students how to protect their privacy online and will outline the importance of maintaining a professional social media presence to thrive in the workplace.
The following subjects will soon be part of the career studies course in Ontario according to the provincial government's press release:
Financial management and budgeting (including paying bills on time, the value of using credit responsibly, and options to pay for postsecondary education);
Careers in high-growth industries such as the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) disciplines;
Social media usage and its implications for students; and,
Cross-curricula transferable skills such as creativity, collaboration, and technological fluency.
The new curriculum is scheduled to begin in September 2019. It comes as part of the Ontario government’s $2.25 million investment into school boards.
Back in May, it was revealed that a Canadian high school in Windsor is now offering its students ‘adulting classes’ which teaches them real-life skills to thrive in their adult lives. Ontario's new mandatory curriculum may not teach students how to sort laundry or change car tires, but it's a start.