For the 16th consecutive year, Aldine ISD received a rating of “Superior” under Texas’ School FIRST (Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas) accountability rating system. The “Superior” rating is the state’s highest, demonstrating the quality of Aldine ISD’s financial management and reporting system.
The primary goal of the School FIRST system is to ensure that Texas public schools are held accountable for the quality of their financial management practices. The School FIRST system is designed to encourage Texas public schools to manage their financial resources better to provide the maximum allocation possible for direct instructional purposes.
The School FIRST system has 15 indicators that are evaluated. The first five indicators are critical and must be met to avoid failure. The other 10 indicators evaluate financial solvency and financial competency.
According to Dr. Tamika Alford-Stephens, Aldine ISD Chief Financial Officer, Aldine met the requirements of the five critical indicators. Those indicators are: filing of the district’s annual financial report within a month, the district’s annual financial report was free of any instances of material weaknesses, the district complied with the payment terms of all debt agreements at the end of the district’s fiscal year, the district made timely payments to the Teachers Retirement System (TRS), Texas Workforce Commission (TWC), the IRS and other governmental agencies, and the district’s total unrestricted net asset balance in the Statement of Net Position/Assets was greater than zero.
Indicators 6-10 evaluated the financial solvency of the district. Those indicators analyzed the amount of cash on hand needed to cover operating expenditures, the ratio of current assets to current liabilities, the ratio of long-term liabilities to total assets, total revenue in comparison to expenditures, and whether the district had sufficient funds to cover its debt. Aldine met the requirements for each of those indicators.
Indicators 11-15 evaluated the district’s financial competency. Those indicators assessed the district’s administrative costs ratio, student enrollment in comparison to the number of staff, the accuracy of its PEIMS reporting, compliance with guidelines, and revenue forecasting. Aldine met the requirements for those five indicators as well.
“Since the implementation of the School FIRST accountability system, Aldine ISD has received the highest rating a school district can receive,” Dr. Alford-Stephens said. “This year’s “Superior” rating is a reflection of the district’s continued demonstration of high-quality financial management and reporting.”