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Bastrop ISD earns state’s highest fiscal accountability rating

Bastrop – Bastrop ISD earned the maximum number of points possible and received a rating of “P” for “Passed” on the state’s financial accountability system, the School Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST), marking the 13th consecutive year the district has earned the state’s highest rating.

“We are very proud to receive the state’s highest rating once again,” Chief Financial Officer Sandra Callahan said. “This rating shows financial stability and transparency in the district, and that Bastrop ISD is accountable for not only our students’ education, but also for providing that education while being good stewards of our taxpayers’ dollars.”

The district received a perfect score, earning 30 points on seven financial indicators, including administrative cost expenditures; the accuracy of a district’s financial information submitted to the Texas Education Agency; and any financial vulnerabilities or material weaknesses in internal controls as determined by an external auditor.

Bastrop ISD spends 62 percent of its $80.6 million budget on instruction, and has an administrative cost ratio of 0.05 percent - less than half of the state’s recommended 0.1105 percent. The district also had no material weaknesses in its annual audit and met all bond payments.

“We truly work hard every day to ensure the district is making the most of our taxpayers’ dollars,” Callahan said. “I’m so proud for the district, and want to thank the entire finance department for the hard work that helps makes this rating possible.”

Created by the 77th Texas Legislature in 2001, the School Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) is designed to encourage public schools to better manage their financial resources in order to provide the maximum allocation possible for direct instructional purposes.

The 2014-2015 ratings are based on annual financial reports provided to TEA by districts and charters from the 2014 fiscal year. The financial accountability system requires TEA to review the audited financial reports from all districts and charters. All school districts and charters are required to report information and financial accountability ratings to parents and taxpayers. In addition, school districts and charters must hold a public discussion or hearing regarding its financial report.

To review the final 2014-2015 FIRST ratings Bastrop ISD, click here.