100 Best W!SE High Schools by event photographer Jeffrey Holmes

W!SE event photographer Jeffrey Holmes

100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014.(Photo: www.jeffreyholmes.com)

100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014.

100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014.  (Photo: www.jeffreyholmes.com)

100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014.

100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance honorees were treated to a tour of the stock exchange. (Photo: www.jeffreyholmes.com)

100 Best W!SE High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014 were honored in a ceremony at the NYSE/Euronext.

Images by event photographer Jeffrey Holmes.

As a New York event photographer, there are certain events that are very special. I have been covering W!SE events for the past decade.  Students from the top ranked schools attend a ceremony hosted by the New York Stock Exchange, Each year this ceremony reassures me that today’s youth are in could care.

  • Here are a few of the highlight I took away from the ceremony. The High School for Math, Science & Engineering at City College in New York City ranked first.
  • The W!SE Certification Program is offered in 28 states with 75% of participating students graduating with w!se Certification in Financial Literacy (CFL™)

Working in Support of Education (w!se), a leading New York City based educational not-for-profit, today announced the winners of the inaugural “100 Best w!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance” during a ceremony at the New York Stock Exchange photographed by Jeffrey Holmes, event photographer.

The release of the rankings marks the 10th anniversary of the w!se Financial Literacy Certification Program, which provides teachers with a curriculum and instructional resources to teach personal finance and to measure student knowledge through the w!se standardized Certification Test. Students passing the test are designated Certified Financially Literate™, which shows that they are financially capable when they graduate. Since its introduction, the program has become integral to personal finance instruction in thousands of classrooms across the United States and is now offered in 28 states.

The 100 Best w!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance recognizes the top performing high schools in w!se’s national network. The No.1 ranked school is High School for Math, Science & Engineering at City College in New York City. Other high schools among the top 25 are situated in Utah, Indiana, Tennessee, Nebraska, Virginia, New Jersey, Illinois, South Carolina and New York State.

The schools were honored with banners, as well as a trophy for the No. 1 ranked school at a ceremony featuring the following speakers photographed by event photographer, Jeffrey Holmes::

Duncan Niederauer, CEO, NYSE Euronext, and President, Intercontinental Exchange Group at the 100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014 were honored in a ceremony held at the NYSE/Euronext. (Jeffrey Holmes/JeffreyHolmes.com)

Duncan Niederauer,  NYSE/Euronext. (Photo: www.JeffreyHolmes.com)

Duncan Niederauer, CEO, NYSE Euronext, and President, Intercontinental Exchange Group at the 100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014 were honored in a ceremony held at the NYSE/Euronext. (Jeffrey Holmes/JeffreyHolmes.com)” width=”400″ height=”286″]Duncan Niederauer, CEO, NYSE Euronext, and President, Intercontinental Exchange Group

Bruce Kasman, Chief Economist, Managing Director and Head of Economic Research, JPMorgan Chase

Bruce Kasman, Chief Economist, Managing Director and Head of Economic Research, JPMorgan Chase at 100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014 were honored in a ceremony held at the NYSE/Euronext. (Jeffrey Holmes/JeffreyHolmes.com)

Bruce Kasman, Chief Economist, Managing Director and Head of Economic Research, JPMorgan Chase. (Photo: www.JeffreyHolmes.com)

Sharon Epperson, Personal Finance Correspondent and Senior Commodities Correspondent, CNBC.

The fastest growing age group declaring bankruptcy is young adults, ages 19 to 25. The 100 Best w!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance ranking seeks to shine the spotlight on the importance of personal finance education. Only 13 states require personal finance instruction in high school and less than 10 percent of high school students take any course on money management before they graduate. The level of financial literacy is particularly acute among people with no post-secondary education and with incomes below $25,000. According to the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, Hispanics and African Americans, who are disproportionately represented in these education and income segments, are especially vulnerable.

Phyllis Frankfort, President & CEO of w!se at 100 Best W!se High Schools Teaching Personal Finance 2014 were honored in a ceremony held at the NYSE/Euronext. (Jeffrey Holmes/JeffreyHolmes.com)

Phyllis Frankfort, President & CEO of w!se. (Photo: www.JeffreyHolmes.com)

“We created the Financial Literacy Certification Program to address the chronic lack of financial literacy among young people,” said Phyllis Frankfort, President & CEO of w!se. “It is imperative that students be exposed to personal financial education before they graduate high school, so they have the knowledge and skills to break the cycle of poverty and to start on the path toward financial well being.”

“We are proud participants in the w!se Certification Program,” said Crystal Bonds, Principal of the High School for Math, Science & Engineering at City College. “We actually hear from our graduates who tell us of specific ways they apply what they learned from the program in managing their money. It’s wonderful because students really benefit from being financially capable young adults.”

The second through fifth place schools include Itineris Early College High School, West Jordan, UT; Coeur d’Alene High School, Coeur d’Alene, ID; Utah County Academy of Sciences, Orem, UT; and Aviation High School, Queens, NY. A complete list of the top 25 schools is included as an appendix.

w!se determined the ranking with support from an Advisory Board comprising experts from academia and finance. The predominant factor was the average score on the Financial Literacy Certification Test with consideration given to eligibility for free lunch and the proportion of test takers to the school population.

Mr. Stovall, of Standard & Poor’s, said: “w!se provides the basis for achieving one of the three pillars of success (Health, Wealth and Happiness) by teaching financial preparedness.”

The Financial Literacy Certification Program has touched the lives of more than 250,000. On average, 75 percent of students pass the Certification Test every year, graduating financially literate. The ranking will be published annually, giving all schools that participate in the Financial Literacy Certification Program an opportunity to earn a place on it each year.

For more information about w!se, contact info(at)wise-ny(dot)org, or visit the program website http://www.wise-ny.org/ for the most recent program news and updates.

About Working In Support of Education (w!se): Working In Support of Education (w!se) is a national not-for-profit dedicated to improving the lives of young people through programs that develop financial literacy and readiness for college and the workforce. Our Initiatives are built on five pillars – relevancy, real world experiences, strong partnerships, volunteerism, and evaluation. The standardized w!se Financial Literacy Certification Test is administered by schools participating in the Financial Literacy Certification Program to measure knowledge, skills and behavioral changes in students after a unit or course on personal finance.

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