Convened in 1995, the Jump$tart Coalition is a not-for-profit organisation that consists of 180 businesses, financial and educational organisations and 47 affiliated state coalitions providing advocacy, research, standards and educational resources to improve the financial literacy of youth.
A key national-level resource provided by the Coalition is the ‘National Standards in K-12 Personal Finance Education’15, first developed in 1998. The standards are intended to provide a personal financial education design and evaluation framework for school administrators, teachers, curriculum specialists, instructional developers and educational policy makers.
As such, the National Standards represent the framework of an ideal personal finance curriculum, portions of which may not be appropriate for individual instructors and students. The Coalition leaves it up to various stakeholders to decide how to address the topics in the National Standards. Educators can use the standards and expectations to design new personal finance units or courses, or to integrate concepts into existing courses. (Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy, 2007)
To help educators to make effective use of the standards and to support effective teaching practice for financial education, the Coalition provides additional resources. These are a personal finance clearinghouse of teaching resources, national best practices guidelines and teacher workshops.
One of Jump$tart's aims is to identify high-quality personal finance materials for educational use. The Clearinghouse is a database of personal finance resources available from a variety of education providers such as Government, business and non-profit organisations. The Clearinghouse enables teachers to identify appropriate educational materials by grade level, format and content category.
The Clearinghouse uses the Educational Materials Review Checklist as a guide in the selection of materials to be included in the database. Materials are reviewed for accuracy, completeness and appropriateness for educational use but inclusion in the database does not constitute endorsement of the materials.
National Best Practices Guidelines
The Coalition provides recommended best practices to support the development of financial education resources and their selection. The guidelines cover the following criteria: objectivity; alignment to standards; teaching and learning; target group; accuracy and up-to date; availability and accessibility; evaluation and assessment.