(March 9, 2016) School finance has been a hot topic in education reform. MI School Data has released the District Financial Transparency Dashboard for school districts. The District Financial Transparency Dashboard is easy to view and can help illustrate a school district’s financial situation based upon financial indicators so that even people without a financial background can understand.
CEPI conducted best practice research, looking at financial indicators used or recommended by other states, the National Center for Education Statistics, and the financial industry to develop a dashboard that would include key indicators of financial health. Data is shown in 5-year trends. The indicators used in the dashboard include Revenue to Expenditure ratio, Fund Balance as Percent of Revenue, Days Cash on Hand, Enrollment Trend, Compensation per FTE, Debt Service Coverage Ratio, Current Ratio, and Operating Margin.
The District Financial Transparency Dashboard allows MI School Data users to develop a better understanding of the often nuanced world of school finance. This dashboard can help families, media, and the general public understand how their schools are doing and also will provide policy makers the opportunity to make informed decisions through data.