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James Buchanan High School’s curriculum has a focus on career readiness that 1st Ed’s Financial Reality Fair put into perspective for the junior class on March 22, 2019. Approximately 140 students prepared for the interactive budgeting workshop by researching their anticipated career to find their entry-level position and salary. On fair day, each student had to visit 10 booths to make monthly budget decisions on transportation, food, and even entertainment. Before they could finalize their budget, they had to spin the Wheel of Reality where they may have to pay for an expense such as a broken cell phone or they could earn some extra income from selling items online. Financial Counselors ended the exercise by working with the students to figure out if they had overspent or were under budget. Some students had to go back to a couple of booths to reduce their monthly expenses or pick up a part-time job; others discussed ways to invest back in themselves and pay down debts.

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