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TEA passes Mission CISD, Auditor gives clean bill

Good news on two fronts for the Mission Consolidated Independent School District.

 

On Nov. 14 the Texas Education Agency released its updated accountability reports for 2017. The report shows MCISD “met standard” in all four areas it rates: student achievement, student progress, closing performance gaps and preparing students for post-secondary education.

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The ratings show the district exceeded target scores in each category but without receiving a distinction designation in any of the four categories. Besides “met standard, the TEA ratings can denote “distinction” or “improvement required.” MCISD was rated as achieving an overall 76 percent of the state’s achievement goals.

 

Next year the TEA begins a new A-F ratings system that is promised to be less complicated than the current system. Persons wishing to view the TEA report on Mission CISD or any other school district can access the TEA reports via: https://tea.texas.gov/2017accountability.aspx.

 

And on Nov. 16 the MCISD audit for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2017 was given a clean bill of health by the auditing firm, Carr, Riggs & Ingram, LLC of McAllen.

 

“We are rendering an unmodified opinion, which is a clean opinion,” said company partner and certified public accountant, Ruben Moreno, who reported the audit results to the district board of trustees. Moreno noted later the accounting term, “unmodified opinion,” replaced the former term, “unqualified opinion,” to describe a report which does not require material modifications to the financial statements or its disclosures.

 

Moreno reported the district’s total revenues for the General Fund were $156.3 million as of June 30 with total expenditures of $153.7 million and Other Uses of $175,283.

 

“So you will see the $2.4 million that is the increase in your fund balance. You have more revenues than expenditures so you increased the fund balance by that amount for this particular year,” Moreno said.

 

Moreno noted the district received $618,000 less last year than the $156.9 million originally budgeted. He noted the district also spent $16.1 million less than the $169.8 million originally budgeted.

 

“Regardless, for the year you increased the fund balance for the year by $2.4 million,” Moreno said, noting the district’s overall fund balance at the end of the last fiscal year was $72.7 million.

 

Auditor and CPA Patsy Davila noted there were some discrepancies in the manner in which the district made payments into the Texas Teacher Retirement System noting those were mainly due to a change in the software system used by the district.

 

In the end, though, Davila said the district paid the proper amounts into the system after working out the software glitch.

 

Davila said the same could be said of three federal grant programs noting that though there had been some deficiencies earlier in the year they had been corrected by year’s end.

 

“What ends up happening is the adjustments were taken care of by management and because of those adjustments it basically followed the path to where at the end, which is especially in the federal program areas, it offset itself, I guess you’d say. It was taken care of,” Davila said.

 

The three federal grant programs where issues were found had to do with grants to local educational agencies, migrant education and teacher and principal education funding. Board President Patricia O’Caña-Olivarez asked if the deficiencies negatively impacted the audit results.

 

“You have an unmodified opinion…and that is the highest level that we can opine,” Davila said. 

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