Mark Twain once said, “I never let my schooling interfere with my education.” In a world where “schooling” is more available and accessible than at any time in human history, we have billions of our global community suffocating financially.
Approximately 80% of the planet earns less than $10 a day, which is considered partially due to lack of access to schooling with “quality” education. On the other hand, we have a different type of financial hardship due to the “overindulgence” in education. The overall student debt in the US has now built up to a staggering $1.57 trillion, acting as a financial millstone to an entire generation.
We rarely take the time to step back and ask the distinction between “schooling” and “education” which Mark Twain alluded to all those years ago. Is it the education itself rather than access to schooling that is the fundamental challenge?
Paul O’Mahony, the founder of FUNancial Freedom Ltd and Rethink Academy Ltd
Courtesy of Paul O’Mahony
Paul O’Mahony, the founder of FUNancial Freedom Ltd and Rethink Academy Ltd has a particular interest in this topic. As the son of two teachers, he was brought up through the tried and trusted formula of getting educated, acquiring a permanent job, and retiring in your sixties which seemed to work reasonably well until the late 20th century.
What he found however as a graduate of the year 2000, that the sure-fire formula for success seemed to have changed. At 30 years of age, ten years into his corporate career in Ireland, having followed the formula to a tee, he found himself with over half a million dollars of debt and yet considered a “success” among his peers.
“As a 30-year-old, I discovered two important distinctions. The first was that wealth and intelligence were not necessarily connected, which I wish I had learned a long time ago. Secondly, that we tend to measure financial success based on the letters after our name (academic qualifications) rather than the numbers in our bank account,” said Paul.
Paul points to four key reasons why educating children about personal finances is more critical than ever.
1. Our school systems do not equip our youth with the skills they need to thrive in today’s world. Despite the best efforts of excellent teachers across the globe, in most instances, the predefined syllabus that dates back decades must be used as the core basis of the teachings. By the time textbooks are written and published nowadays, they are already out of date.
2. Children and teens are actively disengaging from school as they challenge the relevance of learning much of the material they are faced with …….