Teacher Spotlight — Bill Nelson

Bill Nelson, a CTE Career Readiness Teacher and Consultant at the Van Buren Tech School located in Lawrence, MI shared with us the value Budget Challenge adds to his students' lives.

Within the setting you are using Budget Challenge how do you feel it prepares your students for their next phase in life?

Budget Challenge prepares my students for the real world. My students are prepared for being an adult by understanding everything from retirement to paying bills and they really enjoy it.  

What is the biggest challenge for your students in Budget Challenge?

The biggest challenge for my students is paying bills on time. The late fees can be a challenge for students, if they pay a bill late they have to add the $5.00 or whatever late fee they have on top of the bill. 

What do you believe is the greatest benefit your student's receive from participating in Budget Challenge?

The greatest benefit is that they will not get this type of math/education in their home school. Michigan Merit Curriculum is simply not for everyone, not even the majority of students. I feel that every student should have a career math or similar program so we don't send them out amongst the creditor wolves that can and will nickel and dime them to bankruptcy. 

Can you share a memory or types of conversation that has been a result of your students’ interaction with Budget Challenge?

In regards to a memory or types of conversations that I get from my students is the fact that they always tell me that they never would of learned about this if it was not for my Career Readiness Program. They really enjoy the real life lessons that they have learned. I am glad that they are understanding ODP, Fees, interest, etc. It is truly a great curriculum that should be utilized by every school. 

What has been the biggest reward for you as a teacher using Budget Challenge?   

The biggest reward is seeing students succeed in the world of adulting. I love success stories such as my mother brought me to the bank to open a bank account or parents sharing with their young adults on how to pay bills, do taxes, etc. by the conversations that were started when they leave my class and go home.