Finances play an integral role in support of public education in Utah. Each school district and charter school accounting must comply with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), established by the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB). The accounting methods must be capable of producing financial reports that conform with GAAP and the legal requirements of Utah.
This section will link you to chart of accounts, prior year financial summaries of the Annual Financial Report (AFR) and Annual Program Report (APR), indirect cost rates, and other finance matters relating to public education in Utah.
Additional information can be found on the Utah State Board of Education Superintendent's Annual Report.
This handbook is intended to help in the standardization of financial and statistical reports submitted by school districts and charter schools. The contents may be updated from time to time but the basic principles have been in place since 1979 when Utah adopted the Handbook II chart of accounts approved by the Department of Education in 1974. We continue to follow those principles and hope this compilation will assist with questions about specific portions of school budgeting, accounting, auditing and financial reporting in the State of Utah.
Chapter 3: Accounting:
Chapter 6: Auditing:
The chart of accounts gives a school district or charter school the ability to accurately and effectively report on its financial activities and be able to compare data with other school districts or charter schools within the state. The chart of accounts, follow guidelines from Financial Accounting for Local and State School Systems, 2014 Edition, National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). All school districts and charter schools are required to report to the State Board of Education using the approved chart of accounts.
The AFR reports all school district and charter school financial data by fund. The General fund is the largest and records the majority of operating expenses for the operation and maintenance of education.
The AFR summarizes and totals data by school district and charter school. The AFR is compiled using Microsoft Excel. When opening a file click on Enable Macros then click Don't Update to open and work with the file.
The APR reports all school district and charter school financial data by major program. (i.e. Direct Instruction, Special Education, Career Technology Education, Capital Projects, etc.) The APR summarizes and totals data by school district and charter school.
The APR is complied using Microsoft Excel. When opening a file click on 'Enable Macros' then click 'Don't Update' to open and work with the file.
Note: If you need this information in an accessible format, contact the department directly.
Fall 2022 Finance Training
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2021 Public Education Summary
Utah State Board of Education Policy, Law and Professional Practices