The financial ranking of the districts climbs a little


Many school districts in the area have improved financially since last year, but many still have work to do before they are considered stable.

The districts of Griggsville-Perry, Brown County, Franklin and Pleasant Hill all showed improvement in their financial categories.

“It’s something we’ve been winning over the last few years,” said Kent Hawley, principal of Griggsville-Perry schools. “The board has been financially responsible and raising that rating has been a goal for them.”

Griggsville-Perry moved from the early warning category to the review category.

The Illinois State Board of Education publishes an annual financial report for each district, ranking it by financial stability as a recognition district – highest ranking – examining district, early warning district, or surveillance district.

Rankings are based on a district’s fund-to-revenue ratio, expense-to-revenue ratio, cash days, percentage of short-term borrowing capacity remaining, and percentage of long-term borrowing capacity. remaining.

“We have been working on paying off our obligations,” Hawley said. “We had four or five bonds and we’re down to two.”

Decreasing debt has been a big factor in increasing Griggsville-Perry’s financial stability, Hawley said. One of the two remaining bonds will be repaid in three years and the other in four, he said, noting that the repayment of those bonds will also have an impact on the financial stability ranking of the district.

Another thing that has helped Griggsville-Perry is the increase in state payments through the Evidence-Based Funding Formula, which has allowed them to pay their bills and maintain a balanced budget.

“Evidence-based funding has helped the state pay its bills,” Hawley said.

The Pleasant Hill School District has also improved its ranking, but remains in a lower category after moving from surveillance to early warning.

Superintendent Ron Edwards said district finances are a work in progress.

“We are making progress,” Edwards said. “Early warning isn’t great, but it’s better than watching.”

The district has struggled with cuts in state funding for years on a pro rata basis, he said. The district was receiving about $ 1.2 million per year, but that amount was reduced to about $ 830,000 per year, he said.

With the recent funding increases resulting from the new evidence-based formula, the district has been able to make progress, said Edwards.

He is now focused on keeping a balanced budget and trying to find savings where he can, he said.

“We have determined what the wants are and what the needs are,” Edwards said. “There are certain things that we must have; you can’t stop driving buses. ”

The Virginia School District has not changed categories and remains in the exam category.

All other districts in the region were in the highest category, highest recognition, and showed no movement from the last school year.

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