GREENSBORO, N.C. – With lawmakers about to mandate financial literacy courses in public schools, the North Carolina Credit Union League is joining in the literacy campaign by creating a new position – financial education specialist-and hiring a former King middle school teacher for the job. As non-profits, CUs “are uniquely positioned to provide financial education to North Carolinians,” said the League adding that on that score the trade group seeks to provide “as many resources as we can.” The new staffer, Ed Agnoli, a former seventh grade teacher in Stokes County and former corporate paralegal in Winston-Salem, began work May 16. John Radebaugh, president and CEO of the League, said in the past the League “has created valuable partnerships with state agencies such as the Treasurer’s Office, NC $aves, the Cooperative Extension Service and NC Jumpstart, and so we thought it was time to dedicate a full-time staff member to this area.” Agnolis’ teaching experience, said Kim Bohannon, the League’s assistant vice president of compliance/regulatory services, “is a plus as well since a big part of this job is training credit union people to teach the NEFE materials statewide” in a reference to the National Endowment for Financial Education. Credit unions in partnership with NEFE provide a high school financial planning program free-of-charge to interested schools and civic groups. The program offers information about the basics of budgeting and saving and is written for high school and college-age youth. The North Carolina Senate approved legislation in early May that makes financial education mandatory in all high schools. The measure is similar to a bill winning unanimous approval of the House on May 10. State Treasurer Richard Moore was among those who testified on behalf of the bill arguing that “more children leave college today because of bad credit than they do because of bad grades.” Moore added, “If that doesn’t get your attention, I don’t know what will.”

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