OBL Priority Financial Literacy Bill Passes Legislature

10/06/21

Today, an OBL priority bill to strengthen Ohio’s financial literacy high school graduation requirement received a unanimous concurrence vote in the Ohio Senate and now heads to Governor DeWine for his approval.  Senate Bill 1, sponsored by Sen. Steve Wilson (R-Maineville), will ensure efforts to deliver adequate high school instruction on financial literacy move forward. Generally, the OBL-supported bill would create uniformity in how the subject is being taught and ensure that the teachers providing the instruction are qualified to do so.

Sen. Wilson applauded the bill's passage today on the Senate floor. “As a banker for 45 years, I know how abysmally financial literacy is being taught in the state of Ohio," he said. "This bill will address this issue. I want to thank… Evan Kleymeyer of the Ohio Bankers League... for helping to craft the bill and advocate for its passage."

Too often students graduating from high school do not have the financial background to properly decide upon insurance, invest their funds for future retirement, purchase their first home or vehicle, and most importantly make day-to-day decisions that will affect their lives for years to come. These skills are paramount and sadly have been overlooked as curriculums have been updated and altered through the years. 

Many OBL members conduct classes within their communities to foster prudent financial behavior, but this change will have an impact on a much greater scale by trying to reach each student across the state. This has long been a priority of the OBL and OBL members have invested in this both individually and collectively through the Ohio Bankers Foundation. The Ohio Bankers Foundation was created to address two key issues affecting the industry—financial literacy and finding the next generation of bankers. The hope is that the former can help greatly influence the latter by giving individuals a strong base to build on and the confidence to pursue a career in the banking industry. The bill now heads to the Governor for his signature and final approval. There are no indications that the Governor will oppose the bill but OBL will continue to advocate and educate on the issue. OBL will also be participating as the program becomes operational by offering assistance and technical expertise. This is a big win for the industry, students, and all Ohioans.