Country Club Hills school superintendent Goodsell predicts district will improve financial ranking
A school district low on a state financial ratings ranking will show significant improvement when the next figures are published, its superintendent has predicted.
Country Club Hills School District 160, on the far south side of Cook County, has the fourth worst 2018 financial ranking on a list compiled by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE). But Dr. Shannon Goodsell, the district's superintendent, told South Cook News its own auditors have crunched more recent numbers and he is confident the score will be significantly better for this year.
The district, near Tinley Park, manages Zenon Sykuta Elementary, Meadowview Interview Intermediate, and Southwood Middle Schools. It received a rating of 2.35. ISBE, which starting the financial rating in 2003, evaluates fund-balance-to-revenue ratio, expenditure-to-revenue ratio, days cash on hand, and short-term and long-term borrowing ability.
Scores range from between 1 and 2.61, which puts districts on "financial watch," to 2.62 and 3.07 on a warning, 3.08 and 3.53 on review, and 3.54 and 4.00 on recognition. Goodsell told this publication that the district is no longer on the "watch" list and provided documents showing ratings over a four-year period.
But the documents were those submitted by the district auditors to the ISBE prior to that body making a rating. For 2018, the auditors estimated a rating of 2.8, which the ISBE reduced to 2.35.
The superintendent said the district has "done a really good job in regards to financial management.
"For our school district, we have streamlined administration positions, payroll salaries, and increased financial stability," Goodsell said, adding that the information supplied that led to the ISBE ranking was "old information.
"We [want to] make sure expenses are not exceeding revenue, to look at internal controls," Goodsell said.
He added that it takes time for up-to-date information to filter up to the state, and predicted the score will increase at least one level when the next rankings are published.