NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Pre teens and teens are listening about the economy. "Do you know some people who have been laid off?," asks Beth Rupp, an 8th grade teacher at Mike Moses Middle School. The teachers' question creates a pensive moment for her student, Paul Theiss. He has family friends who lost a job and are drawing unemployment. "I feel really upset that I'm getting stuff, but they're having hard times getting it and it just kinda makes me kinda sad," shared Theiss.
Other 8th graders exhibit the same compassion. Jack Dusa's mother works in human resources facing people without a job. "She says even though she can't control it, she feels bad. Makes me feel bad too," said Dusa. Ashton Brown picks up on her father's anxiety. He's a stockbroker. "He gets a lot more phone calls now because clients are worried," said Brown. And Rupp shares how her daughter may lose a good job as a chemical engineer. "She called her dad and said we're gonna have to be her plan B," said Rupp. "I told her I certainly would."
No matter where they hear it, youngsters are increasingly aware of grownup money matters. Business people recognized that today. In behalf of the Nacogdoches Chamber of Commerce Great Expectations program, they're explaining what students can do now with their education choices to afford a higher quality of life. Derrick Fields, an 8th grader, knows why. "The way things are going now, how the wages are going, we're not going to be able to live off it," said Fields. "They seem to be a little more savy about the budget we review with them," noticed Kati Harris, Great Expectation volunteer.
And some students are smart enough to know how to help out. "I play the drums at church and I go mow yards," said Fields. "I spend it on me or give it to my dad if he needs gas money." "I don't ask to go out to eat as much and I try not to ask for so much stuff," said Brown. "Just pray for them that God will work in their lives and that they will be alright," shared Theiss.