KANSAS CITY, MO, Mar 15, 2011 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- How many parents would hand over the family budget for their teenager to manage? Not many. And probably with good reason. Statistics show that only 15 percent of teens receive any formal personal finance education before graduation(1) and 50 percent of high school seniors fail when tested on basic personal finance(2). Many teens leave high school unprepared to balance a checkbook, pay bills and avoid debt, but teachers nationwide are working to change that and H&R Block has committed $500,000 to helping them.
Through H&R Block Dollars & Sense, the company provides personal finance curriculum grants to interested teachers each year. Hundreds of high schools vie for the Virtual Business(R) -- Personal Finance software and curriculum H&R Block Dollars & Sense provides, and this year the public is being asked to help determine grant recipients. Through April 15, anyone who visits www.hrblockdollarsandsense.com can view the list of applicants, read why each school wants personal finance curriculum, and cast a daily vote for their school(s) of choice. Through this process, 250 schools will receive interactive curriculum that takes students through 18 real-life scenarios covering budgeting, credit scores, debt management, bill paying and more in a fun environment.
"H&R Block works with millions of clients each year and we know regardless of age, geography and income, people experience financial stress and are always interested in seeing their money grow," said Kathy Collins, vice president of brand for H&R Block. "H&R Block Dollars & Sense is not only an opportunity for us to support local schools and give back to the communities we serve, it's also a way for us to empower kids for a strong financial future."
Teaching Teens About Money Parents commonly cite money among the most difficult topics to discuss with their teens, but the price of not having the conversations is too high to pay.
"Financial stress can be damaging to teens' health," said Dr. Brad Klontz, a financial psychologist and author who works with H&R Block Dollars & Sense. "High school is a critical time for teens to learn important financial lessons before they are out on their own. Helping teenagers understand concepts such as credit and compound interest early can build confidence, reduce stress and set them on the right track for their financial future."
For more information about H&R Block Dollars & Sense, to vote for a school, or to read Dr. Klontz's tips for talking to teens about money, visit www.hrblockdollarsandsense.com.
(1)National Endowment for Financial Education (2)Jumpstart Coalition for Financial Literacy
H&R Block Inc. (NYSE: HRB) is one of the world's largest tax services providers, having prepared more than 550 million tax returns worldwide since 1955. In fiscal 2010, H&R Block had annual revenues of $3.9 billion and prepared more than 23 million tax returns worldwide utilizing more than 100,000 highly trained tax professionals. The Company provides tax return preparation services in person through H&R Block At Home(TM) online and desktop software products and through other channels. The Company is also one of the leading providers of business services through RSM McGladrey. For more information, visit our Online Press Center.
SOURCE: H & R Block