The French education ministry, Le Ministère de l’Éducation Nationale, have added cryptocurrency to the high school curriculum so that young students can begin to understand the true fundamentals of currency. Using Bitcoin (BTC) as an example, the Economics and Social Science syllabus will explore the differences between centralised and decentralised currencies.
The ministry’s document explains that the inclusion of the topic is intended to enable students to comprehend and to reflect upon the characteristics of currencies and how the different types function and operate within retail, commercial and financial markets.
Confidence and Trust
One of the key pedagogical objectives stated is providing an understanding of confidence in money and how trust is a key component in any particular currency being accepted by a society as a form of value transaction.
Utilising a series of videos, the syllabus will attempt to engage the learners into considering how they view currency and in what form they most trust.
To help achieve this educational aim, the lessons will include insights into the creation and destruction of monetary value with an additional focus on the role of the central bank within the current financial system. By examining central bank monetary actions in the setting of interest rates, students will learn how these policies influence retail prices and activity within the wider economy.
The ministry’s paper makes note of the 2008 global financial crisis and how the euro zone was impacted as a result. It also mentions how “In 2010, the European Central Bank reacted strongly by increasing the base monetary policy and a sharp and sustained decline in key interest rates to support credit and global demand.”
There is no clear indication from the education ministry as to why now is the right time to enlighten learners about the merits of different types of monetary policies, or of currencies, but Bitcoin has recently become more prominent within France through being available via the network of licensed tobacconists and even a growing awareness spread through the yellow vest movement.