Ascension Public Schools Earns National Budget Award

Staff Report
Ascension's finance staff members were recognized at the Oct. 18 Ascension Parish School Board meeting. Pictured from left are Deshonna Jackson, Joann Butler, Representative Ed Price, Lakeita Dennis, Tolia Duplessis, Diane Allison, Nicole Breaux, Dionne Davis, Jessica Geason, Anne Waguespack, Samantha Smothers, Shelly Madere and Superintendent David Alexander.

Ascension Public Schools fiscal policies and financial management have once again been recognized by the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) with the Distinguished Budget Presentation Award. The award is earned by only the top two percent of government agencies in the United States and Canada, and this is the fourth consecutive year Ascension's school district has achieved this recognition.

"I am proud of our business department and its leadership for their commitment to financial excellence and accountability," said Ascension Public Schools Superintendent David Alexander. "Our mission of 'Every Child Successful' takes every person, whether it is inside the classroom or, in this case, managing the resources that support our students."

GFOA established the Distinguished Budget Presentation Awards Program in 1984 to encourage and assist state and local governments to prepare budget documents of the very highest quality that reflect both the guidelines established by the National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting and the GFOA’s best practices on budgeting and then to recognize individual governments that succeed in achieving that goal.

According to State Rep. Ed Price, who presented the award, only 1,492 out of 87,000 government entities in the United States and Canada earned this recognition in 2015. Additionally, only 15 of 4,000 government entities in Louisiana earned the award, and Ascension was one of only two Louisiana school districts to achieve this honor. 

"It shows that you have a finance department that is truly doing the right thing in making sure that the people's money is being spent right," Price said.