Charter schools are subject to extensive oversight and regulation. Compliance is an ongoing challenge that BPI can help you meet.
To ensure compliance, annual audits are required by the SBOA, with reports due biannually to the DOE.
Indiana State Department of Education (DOE)
Oversight of charter schools starts with the Indiana State Department of Education (DOE). Most state and federal funding grants are administered through the DOE.
Every six months, charter schools are required to submit to DOE a report of revenues and expenditures called Form 9. Bookkeeping Plus prepares this report for its clients, and otherwise works to ensure that they use the proper forms and procedures required by the DOE or SBOA.
State Board of Accounts (SBOA)
In Indiana, the SBOA promulgates a series of protocols that govern accounting methodology for charter schools. Compliance is mandatory, but due to the extensive nature of the regulations, it is not always easy to understand how the rules apply in a particular case or how they should be implemented.
BPI has the knowledge and experience of what information to provide to the SBOA on behalf of each of our clients. We also work with the client to ensure that they remain in compliance. We set up the accounting system in compliance with the SBOA-designated chart of accounts and related regulations.
The SBOA also disseminates regulations for recordkeeping and records management. BPI helps the school ensure its compliance with the Indiana state standards.
The School’s Authorizer
Each school is chartered by an authorizer, who may publish their own subset of rules and regulations relating to finances. BPI works with the school to ensure it understands and complies with these rules.
Increasingly, authorizers are looking not just at technical compliance with regulations, but at the actual financial strength and financial performance of the school. This is an area where BPI is uniquely suited to assist clients, in that it can provide consulting services to address the school’s current and long-term issues.
Authorizers include Ball State University, the Indianapolis Mayor’s Office, the DOE, school districts, and others.
An individual charter school’s board of directors may issue its own set of financial policies and procedures. BPI assists with addressing these requirements as well.
Audits are required by state law (implemented by SBOA), and by each charter school’s authorizer. These audits are conducted by CPA firms. BPI has extensive experience with the audit process and what to expect. We strive to keep the accounts audit-ready throughout the year.
Prior to the audit by your CPA firm, we prepare any necessary information and work with the client to make sure they are prepared. We then work with the auditors to ensure that they have all the information they need, and assist with any questions as they arise. With BPI as your accountant, the audit process goes much more smoothly, which also can reduce the cost to the school.
We help schools set up their processes and procedures to stay in compliance with the SBOA. We pride ourselves on the schools we work with on having zero or extremely low audit comments. We also have come on board as the accountant for a number of schools and turned around their problem compliance scores within the next audit period.
Extra-Curricular Accounting and Internal Controls Compliance
Click here to read about our other areas of Charter School Accounting services.