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The Paris ISD Board of Trusteea complimented the district’s business manager for her hard work in keeping the district in line with state requirements. 

“They’re trying to make it more difficult, and we’re great stewards of our tax dollars,” Superintendent Paul Jones said. “... thank you Tish (Holleman).”

The district received a score of 98 out of a possible 100 on the state’s Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas, measuring how well school districts manage their funding. Most of the score comes from the district’s annual audit, using financial data from 2017-18. 

Out of the 15 criteria followed for the rating, the state only found one niggling thing, Holleman said. 

“We get dinged a bit on debt,” she said. 

The district still is paying off debt from the building of Paris High School, bonds taken out in 2007 to finance the project. The state looks at the district’s financial solvency, and debt needs to be under 0.6%. Holleman said Paris ISD is at 0.65%, so on that benchmark the district was scored 8 out of 10. And, next year they should be at 0.6096%. 

“I’ve already run the numbers on what we will get next year, and it appears we will once again have a 98 out of 100,” she said, “... if nothing goes nuts.” 

However, for the year after next, the state will be making changes to the program, including some things the district can’t predict, like student enrollment.

“For 2021, there will be some new indicators,” Holleman said. 

The state will be checking how predicted student enrollment lines up with actual enrollment. Texas put the measure in place to keep districts from over-estimating enrollment. Some districts will give high prediction numbers, receive that funding from the state, letting those funds gather interest and, when the state settles up the numbers with actual enrollment, return the over-estimated amount and pocket the interest raised from the extra money, Holleman said. 

“Two years out, it will be a whole new discussion on what we scored for a FIRST rating,” she said. 

Kim Cox is the city editor for The Paris News. She can be reached at 903-785-6965 or at kim.cox@theparisnews.com.

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