School System Dashboard Terms
Asset Sufficiency Ratio – Reflects a school system’s ability to use its general fund assets to cover general fund liabilities. This ratio is calculated using total assets and total liabilities from the general fund, as identified in the system’s balance sheet.
Change in Total and Unassigned Fund Balance – Reflects whether the school system’s fund balance increased or decreased from the prior year. This is calculated using the current and prior year fund balance amounts.
Current Ratio – Reflects school system’s ability to pay for its short-term obligations. This ratio is calculated using current assets (cash and cash equivalents, accounts receivables, and inventories) and current liabilities (accounts, salary, and other payables as well as long-term liabilities due within one year) identified in the statement of net position.
Expenditures – Decreases in net current assets. Expenditures are categorized according to the Georgia Department of Education’s chart of accounts. For the purposes of this report, they have been grouped into the following:
- Instruction – Activities dealing directly with the interaction between students and teachers.
- Support Services – Includes expenditures related to several categories that relate to supporting instruction. These include pupil services (e.g., guidance counseling, testing), food services, student transportation, educational media services, and services to improve instruction.
- Administration – Activities concerned with the overall administrative responsibility for school operations, as well as activities concerned with establishing and administering policy for operating the school system.
- Maintenance and Operations – Activities concerned with keeping the physical plant open, comfortable, and safe for use, and keeping the grounds, buildings, and equipment in effective working condition and state of repair.
Fund Balance – Represents the financial resources available to the school system. Fund balance can be found in the system’s balance sheet (as calculated by the difference in assets and liabilities) but is also impacted by the difference in revenue and expenditures (as reflected in the statement of revenues, expenditures, and changes in fund balance).
General Fund – Accounts for resources that are not required to be accounted for in another fund, such as debt service (used to repay principal and interest on long-term debt) or capital projects (resources restricted for major capital outlays).
Some systems also account for state and federal grants in a Special Revenue Fund. For the purposes of this report, these have been added to the General Fund.
Governmental Funds – Fund category that accounts for general school system operations.
Other fund categories include proprietary funds (to account for activities similar to the commercial sector, such as an after-school program) and fiduciary funds (to account for assets the system hold in a trustee or agency capacity for non-school district programs, such as student activity funds).
Operating Reserve Ratio – Reflects the extent to which school system can pay its general fund expenditures with its unassigned fund balance. The ratio indicates what percentage of a year an entity could operate if it were unable to collect any revenue. This ratio is calculated using the unassigned fund balance from the balance sheet and the general fund total expenditures from statement of revenue, expenditures, and change in fund balance.
Per Pupil Expenditures – General fund total expenditures divided by the system’s full-time equivalent count.
Per Pupil Revenue – General fund total revenue divided by the system’s full-time equivalent count.
Regional Education Service Agency (RESA) – Agency established to provide shared services to improve the effectiveness of educational programs and services of local school systems.
Unassigned Fund Balance – The portion of the total fund balance that is not restricted to a particular purpose, as defined by a grant or school board policy, for example. Can be found in the system’s balance sheet in the general fund.
Click here to return to the dashboard.
Click here for other frequently asked questions.