I literally (and when I say literally I do mean “literally” not figuratively, as that word has come to mean) cannot think of a NJ law that has been enacted in the recent past that has made any sense. But with the news that student debt has risen 128% in the past 10 years up to an average of $22,800 per student, I can’t think of a better way to try to counteract this dire situation than NJ’s new “Financial Literacy” Law. Standing out from the profusion of useless trivial BS things that are taught in public school today, this should be a core pillar— a shining example of something in the curriculum the kids really need to know.

By the time he graduates from high school, a student should know exactly what he’s committing to when he takes out that college loan. He should understand basic economics as well as the economics of debt and borrowing, interest rates, accrued interest and the like. The bill, signed into law in early January, requires financial education in grades six through eight.

Furthermore, the legislation, which will go into effect this coming September, would provide for the aforementioned instruction as well as requiring that students understand the facts about tuition assistance programs and student loan debt before they graduate high school. It is not often that I give kudos to a group of the legislators here in New Jersey but what’s right is right. High-fives all around to the bill’s main sponsors: Senators Dawn Marie Addiego and Ron Rice and Assemblymembers Angela McKnight, Nicholas Chiaravalloti, Eliana Pintor Marin, Jamel Holley, Benjie Wimberley and Annette Quijano.

This is proof that if our legislature could concentrate on REAL problems and how to tackle them, the state legislative process really CAN benefit the people of NJ.