AUSTIN (KXAN) — Eight school districts in Texas received a failing grade in the Texas Education Agency’s financial accountability ratings for the 2022-23 school year.
The TEA released the ratings for each school district on Monday, Nov. 6. Districts are assigned a letter grade and a corresponding financial management rating.
The School Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) is designed to encourage districts to improve financial resources “to provide the maximum allocation possible for direct instructional purposes,” according to the TEA.
The vast majority of districts received an A grade, which the TEA classifies as ‘superior.’
More than 90% of all districts statewide received an A rating. Fifty districts received a B ‘above standard’ rating, while 41 districts received a C ‘meets standard’ rating.
The eight districts that received an F ‘substandard’ rating were Ben Bolt-Palito Blanco ISD (Jim Wells County), Denver City ISD (Yoakum County), Holliday ISD (Archer County), Keene ISD (Johnson County), Matagorda ISD (Matagorda County), Priddy ISD (Mills County), Sunray ISD (Moore County) and Tioga ISD (Grayson County).
The FIRST ratings are calculated using 20 financial indicators, according to the TEA. Factors include administrative cost expenditures, the accuracy of final information submitted to the TEA and whether the district has any financial vulnerabilities in internal controls, as determined by an external auditor.
Meanwhile, the release of the agency’s annual A-F school ratings is less certain. A Travis County judge ordered the TEA not to release the ratings after more than 100 districts sued the education commissioner over anticipated changes to how the scores were calculated. The TEA has appealed that decision.