By: Susan Gum // February 20th, 2019 // Stories
Typically, the Strategic Financial Planning (SFP) course is taken by students in their senior year. The purpose of this high school math elective is for students to examine the general nature of financial management and the American financial system. Taught by a former J.P. Morgan specialist, DCHS teacher Mr. Keith Stonebraker leads the SFP course by providing specific attention to saving, investing, budgeting, debt, and consumer awareness. Throughout the course, Mr. Stonebraker also has his students search the scriptures to discover God’s view of money.
“The Bible is an excellent resource in teaching us how to be good stewards of what He has first provided,” said Mr. Stonebraker.
Currently, the students are focused on investing–learning about the different investment types and the importance of diversification. In order to give his students real-life experience, Mr. Stonebraker has them working on an project where, after dividing the students into groups, he has them take $10,000 (pretend money of course) to invest in four (4) different mutual funds and two (2) company stocks. The students will then be required to manage their portfolios for the remainder of the semester–making important decisions along the way to either ride out market fluctuations or sell an investment and reinvest in something new. To add additional excitement, Mr. Stonebraker has the groups competing against one another to see who will achieve the biggest growth over the coming months.
Working in groups, the Strategic Financial Planning students spend a good amount of time conducting research on different stocks and mutual funds before deciding where best to invest.