News & Press: IASBO News


Wednesday, March 27, 2019  


The spring IASBO Extracurricular Accounting Seminar will be held on April 23 at the Primo Banquet and Conference Center in Indianapolis.  The seminar agenda is designed for new and experienced ECA treasurers.  Please share this information with your ECA treasurers.  Registration information can be found on the IASBO website.  The agenda for April 23 is as follows:

8:30 a.m.

9:00 a.m.

9:05 a.m.
Legal Responsibilities, Funds, Revenue, & Investments 
Treasurer Responsibilities, General Requirements, Cash, Receipts, Fund Raisers, Vending Machines, Investments

Presenter:  Steve Nauman, Business Manager / Treasurer, Seymour Community Schools  
Expenditures, Bank Reconcilements, & Balancing 
Purchasing, Expenditures, Textbook Rental, Athletics, Bank Reconcilements, Month & Year End Balancing 

Presenter:  Vicki Andrews, Corporation Treasurer, Southern Wells Community Schools   
10:30 a.m.

10:45 a.m.
Expenditures & Purchasing, cont’d.          
11:00 a.m. 
ECA Risk Report, Internal Controls, & Audits                        

Presenter:  Chase Lenon, Asst. Director of Audit Services, Schools & Townships, State Board of Accounts                                                                                                               
12:00 p.m.

1:00 p.m. 
Break-Out Group Discussions                                                
Discussion sessions will be broken down by interests of Elementary and Jr. High / Middle School / High School ECA Treasurers

3:00 p.m.

Reps. Jared Huffman (D-CA), John Katko (R-NY), Joe Neguse (D-CO), David McKinley (R-WV), Dean Phillips (D-MN), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Kurt Schrader (D-OR), Glen Thompson (R-PA), and U.S. Sens. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), and Pat Roberts (R-KS) have introduced the IDEA Full Funding Act. The bipartisan legislation would commit Congress to full funding of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, first passed in 1975; that bill directed the federal government to pay 40% of the average per pupil expenditure for special education. The pledge has never been met, and current funding is down at 14.7%."School districts are increasingly challenged to do more with less resources, especially when managing rising costs associated with educating special needs students. School business officials agree that one of the best ways to raise the tides for all students is by fully funding IDEA,” said Siobhan McMahon, chief operations officer at the Association of School Business Officials International. “Congress' broken promise to schools have forced districts to cut education programs at other students' expense to fill the gap for IDEA's underfunded mandates. It's time for Congress to make good on their promise so that all students can receive the high-quality education they deserve,” she added.  IASBO has been working with ASBO International on this bill and completely support the IDEA Full Funding Act.

Today, the Washington Post had the following story regarding the proposed administration’s federal education budget.  

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Tuesday defended her request to cut billions of dollars from the agency’s budget, as Democrats attacked her plan as outrageous and damaging to students who need the most help. Democrats were also cold to DeVos’s plan to use the federal tax code to support private school scholarships, suggesting that the secretary’s priorities will face another tough year in Congress. 

“I believe this budget is cruel, and I believe it is reckless,” said Rep. Rosa L. DeLauro (D-Conn.), who chairs the education subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee and presided over the hearing on Tuesday. “I really am left with a very serious question for you: How can you support this budget? I mean that genuinely.” Lawmakers cited a variety of programs targeted for cuts or elimination by the Trump administration, such as the $17.6 million supporting the Special Olympics. “I still can’t understand why you would go after disabled children in your budget. It’s appalling,” Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) said. Even the top Republican on the panel, Rep. Tom Cole (Okla.), said that while some proposed reductions make sense, others are “somewhat shortsighted.” 

DeVos responded that she was forced to make difficult decisions to control spending, but appeared to be realistic about her chances. “This reduction is similar to last year’s request, and the year before that, as well. I acknowledge that you rejected those recommendations,” she said. Overall, the budget plan cuts more than $8.5 billion, about 12 percent, from the Education Department. Programs that would face cuts include one that supports after-school activities for children in impoverished communities, as well as a grant program for textbooks, equipment, counseling services and other needs for schools. That pool of money — the Student Support and Academic Enrichment Program — also underwrites school safety efforts, including mental-health services and safety equipment. “We’ve proposed this particular program elimination because it’s been thinly spread and not that effective on any particular thing,” DeVos said.

DeVos was more enthusiastic in promoting her own chief cause: a $5 billion tax-credit plan to help children attend private schools. She refers to the initiative as “education freedom.” The proposal faces long odds for approval, especially in the House, where Democrats are in control. DeLauro dismissed the idea as a “tax scheme” and an “unregulated, unaccountable” effort to fund private school vouchers. The proposal would give individuals and corporations a 100 percent tax credit for contributions to state sanctioned scholarship funds, meaning that donors could get back their entire donation through federal taxes. The money would be given to students to help pay tuition at private schools and other expenses. 

Democrats also pressed DeVos on a report from the advocacy group Network for Public Education that found the federal government wasted up to $1 billion on charter schools that never opened, or opened and then closed because of mismanagement and other reasons. DeVos replied that more schools options, including charters, are needed. “When you have experimentation, you’re always going to have schools that don’t make it and that’s what should happen,” she said. DeVos also faced questions about her decision to withdraw Obama-era guidelines to schools regarding discipline. The guidance had warned school systems that they might be in violation of federal civil rights law if they discipline students of color at a disproportionately high rate compared with white students. “Are you saying that the problem really is that black children are just more of a discipline problem?” Rep. Katherine M. Clark (D-Mass.) asked. DeVos sidestepped a discussion of why discipline rates frequently differ by race but said the previous guidance amounts to a quota system for disciplinary action. “No child should be treated or disciplined differently based on his or her race or color,” DeVos said.