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Waco ISD gets Superior financial rating from TEA

WACO, TX (September 1, 2023)—Waco ISD began its new budget year on September 1 with top honors from the TEA for the way the district handles its money. The legislative-mandated financial accountability ratings have been released and Waco ISD received the Texas Education Agency’s highest rating of Superior. 

The Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) ratings are based on 15 established financial indicators including operating expenditures for instruction, tax collection rates, student-teacher ratios, and long-term debt. 

Over 1,200 school districts and charter schools are rated. Schools receive one of four ratings: Superior, Above Standard, Standard, and Substandard. 

Superintendent Dr. Susan Kincannon said Waco ISD is very proud to earn the highest possible FIRST rating again.

“This achievement reflects the exceptional work of the Waco ISD Business and Financial Services Department, board of trustees, and employees in making sure local taxpayer dollars, state funds, and federal dollars are not only judiciously spent, but very well managed. This prestigious honor becomes more challenging each year as operational funds continue to shrink,” Kincannon said. “With that said, I want to once again recognize the outstanding efforts of our Chief Financial Officer, Ms. Sheryl Davis, and her staff, the oversight of the school board, and our employees who continually demonstrate a willingness to stretch every dollar as far as possible to make sure that our students have the best opportunities to succeed.”

The Texas Legislature created FIRST in 2001 to encourage public schools to better manage their financial resources. All school districts and charters are required to report information and financial accountability ratings to parents and taxpayers.

This is the district’s twentieth consecutive year to receive top financial ratings from the TEA. To review FIRST ratings for all districts and charters, go to