The mission of the Board of Education Finance Committee is as follows: To represent all stakeholders in the community, share relevant professional experiences, increase transparency in financial operations, and advise and assist the administration with efficiently and effectively operating the District.
A Board member leads the Finance Committee in partnership with the Assistant Superintendent of Business and Operations. The Finance Committee adheres to the rules of the Illinois Open Meetings Act, with agenda and minutes available to the public. Non-members of the Finance Committee are welcome to attend meetings but participation is limited to members and invited guests. The committee has non-binding authority.
Membership includes representatives from the administration, Board of Education, staff associations, parents, and community members. Individuals interested in membership on the committee may apply during the open application period; committee members are chosen by a selection committee. Membership is based on financial experience and role in the District to ensure a balanced cross-section of representatives. Committee members serve two-year terms, which are staggered among sitting members.
Approximately nine committee meetings are scheduled per year; the meeting schedule is set at the start of the school year and may be modified as needed.
Members are required to attend a school finance workshop presented by the Assistant Superintendent of Business. Throughout the year, members are required to review financial documents in preparation for committee meetings. Such documents may include the District Budget, Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, and financial projections.
The committee provides input on all major revenues, expenses, investment practices, and policies related to the management of District finances. Specifically, the committee:
- Provides guidance on the financing of strategic initiatives and District goals.
- Provides representative Board input into the District’s financial operations.
- Provides community perspective on strategic direction in District financial planning.
- Uses both short-term and long-range planning projections to gain insight into ways to improve revenue sources and the effects of certain expense assumptions.
- Represents both external and internal perspectives to assure progressive improvements in District finances.
- Provides an open forum for discussion of critical issues related to the management of financial processes.
- Shares relevant, professional community and school experiences and ideas among community representatives and school personnel.
- Coordinates work with other committees as needed.
- Engages in benchmarking with similar districts.
- Conducts a risk management review.
Committee Activities (I): Information
The committee shares their perceptions regarding the following items:
- Budget planning
- Legislative/Regulatory developments
- Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF) Underfunded Actuarial Accrued Liability
- Levy planning
- Long-range projection assumptions
- High-performing district benchmark data
Committee Activities (II): Discussion
The committee provides input to assist in preliminary thinking and staff preparation for the Board regarding the following items:
- Adopted budgets
- Financial projections and modeling
- District objectives and goals
- Program initiatives
- Financial policies
- Statement of District’s financial condition
- Long-term financial plan
- District staffing and costs
- Cost-saving initiatives
- Special projects
Committee Activities (III) Action
The committee analyzes recommendations for the Board, including the following items:
- Tax levy
- Budget adoption
- Fees and rates
- Financing strategies
- New or revised financial policies
This overview format was adapted from the Finance Committee Charter, River Trails School District 26.
- Committee Chair: Sinead Duffy, Board Vice President
- Co-Chair: Michael Martin, Board Member
- Dr. Hector Garcia, Superintendent
- Rick Engstrom, Assistant Superintendent of Business and Operations
- Catie Norton, Director of Financial Services
- Nathan Lucht, Community Member
- Jerry Mejdrich, Community Member
- Asim Aleem, Community Member
- Rich Giltner, Community Member
- Chris White, Community Member