Today during an educational exercise on financial literacy, ninth grade students at Meridian High School came face-to-face with reality.
They got an eye-opener about just how important it is to receive an education.
“Students were hand-issued a paper and they did not get to pick. They were given a job. They were told if they graduated from high school or did not graduate from high school. Some were dropouts; some went to college. They found out if they’re married or not married and if they have children or not,” said Holli Cobb, the high school’s freshman academy counselor.
Students then had to use their salaries to determine a monthly budget.
“We have a grocery store. If you have a child, you have to go get childcare. You will need to go to the bank. If you want a car, you have to go get a car. They hope that maybe at the end, they will have enough money to do fun things or go get some new clothes,” said Cobb.
For most, the money didn’t stretch far.
“The students really got a chance to see you know, I really have to make a lot of money if I want a certain lifestyle. Or, I’m going to have to budget. Even going to the bank and saving money. What does that look like? How much money do I even have to save?” said Shevonda Truman, the freshman academy principal.
One student shared how the event helped him to see how staying in school can lead to success.
“What you do in school now reflects on what you’re going to do in your career. Going to college is the right thing because that’s going to help you get the job that you want, do anything that you need to, and there’s more money if you go to college.”