Pasadena ISD finance team earns perfect score

Pasadena ISD finance team earns perfect score
Posted on 11/20/2020
Pasadena ISD finance team earns perfect scoreBy Maria Mata
Pasadena ISD Communications

The Pasadena ISD Finance Department has earned a perfect score of 100 by the School Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) for the first time since the Texas Education Agency (TEA) changed the indicators in 2015-2016.

FIRST ratings are based on 14 financial indicators, such as administrative cost expenditures, the accuracy of a district’s financial reporting and any financial vulnerabilities or material weaknesses as determined by an external auditor.

TEA changed its grading system in 2015-16 in accordance with House Bill 5 to combine financial indicators with financial solvency indicators. Prior to 2015, districts could only earn a maximum of 70 points instead of its current maximum of 100 points.

The rating system is designed to encourage Texas public schools to better manage their financial resources and ensure that schools throughout the state are held accountable for their financial management practices.

Once a district submits their financial report, they are assigned a grade of A-F based on their score. Pasadena ISD excelled on all 14 financial indicators, resulting in a perfect score and an “A” rating for “Superior Achievement.”

“I am extremely proud of our Finance Department for all their work and dedication to excellence,” said Dr. DeeAnn Powell, Pasadena ISD superintendent of schools. “We have an outstanding team who works extremely hard each and every day for our school district.”

The finance team also earned a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) for their Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). This is the highest form of recognition in governmental accounting and financial reporting that an organization can receive.

The CAFR is an annual external audit that is judged by a team of GFOA panelists who annually review the report to ensure that districts are practicing financial transparency and meeting the expectations of the GFOA program.

This marks the sixth consecutive year that Pasadena ISD has received this recognition.

Both recognitions were awarded based on financial reporting and governmental accounting for the fiscal year ending on August 31, 2019.