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legislative issue / SPRING 2011

Indispensable tool for School Business Management

Ray Coyne, Illinois ASBO active member since 1987.

You need this

PROGRAM 2011 annual conference preview / 23

Editorial Advisory Board: Meet new UPDATE leadership. / 14 Looking Closely: The pertinent statements of GASB 51, 54. / 39 Serving Up Change: Child Nutrition Law writes new recipe. / 42

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update Magazine / Spring 2011


Illinois Association of School Business Officials Update Magazine / Spring 2010 / v.18 / i.03

legislative issue

25 Within a school funding climate that breeds more questions than answers, professional development can easily take the back burner to more pressing financial concerns.

Prepare to make the most of this year’s Illinois ASBO Annual Conference ... making it an indispensable resource and a solid investment in your district.

the Next Issue: ancilliary services More than just providers. Knowing the qualities of personnel leaders can create the optimum learning environment.

Cover Story by Rebekah Weidner

Point of View: 10 Tips for First-Time Conference Attendees 2010 Scholarship winner gives pointers on how to have a great experience. By Stephen Bayles


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Your Resource, Your Perspective: Introducing the Editorial Advisory Board

communicating your value:

Moving past the lingo to convey the merit of school business.



UPDATE Editorial Advisory Board brings a wide-range of expertise to create a valuable publication and school business resource. Read each profile to learn what these EAB members bring to the creative process.


new year or just more of the same?

Looking forward into 2011 is much like looking into a mirror.


from-the-field ready for the annual conference?

Networking is key to making this year the best yet.


path-to-success become a school business leader:

Leadership Institute cohort moves beyond the technical side.


supporting role

Funding School Success : The latest from the Education Funding Advisory Board Ten years after their first recommendation reached the General Assembly, The Education Funding Advisory Board has submitted new proposals addressing the FY2012 foundation level and a study agenda for the future. Their goal? Creating equal educational opportunities for students across Illinois. By James B. Fritts

get inspired and give back:

Recognize those who pave the way at the Foundation Banquet.


Business partners How a member of the Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance moves legislation forward.


school business 101 Hear what other members would talk to their legislators about.


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update Magazine / Spring 2011


A Look at Pertinent GASB Statements: GASB 51 and GASB 54 With GASB 51 already in effect, and GASB 54 poised to take effect for the June 30, 2011 audit cycle, school districts are looking at some potentially significant changes in how they report intangible assets and fund balances on their financial statements. GASB 54 in particular could raise some significant issues for Illinois school districts. By Bert G. Nuehring, CPA, and Matthew A. Geerdes, CPA



on my list

Serving Up Change Two experts weigh in on newly signed Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act and its foreseeable impact on school lunch and school business. By Rebekah Weidner

42 The final word Great Ideas from Great Illinois ASBO Members Cheryl M. Crates Chief Financial Officer Community Unit School District 300 DAA Vice-Chairperson explains how lack of state leadership has meant the people of Illinois have not heard the truth about the economic conditions. How legislation needs to increase revenues and how Democrats and Republicans need to work together to solve the state’s problems without placing blame.


Making change inevitable, and making it happen. Authors share as innovators in best practices training products and services that have taught more than two million people.


on paper From the Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance to your mailbox.


on screen Representatives are tweeting, latest from the DAA and more.


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update Magazine / Spring 2011

perspective / Board President

from-the-podium I trust the holiday season was one of joy and fulfillment for you and your loved ones. It is one of my favorite times of year because I am able to spend some quality time with family and friends that is too often in short supply. Even with the hustle and bustle of the holidays, it is important to give thanks to those who support us each and every day.

(GASB), Equalized Assessed Value (EAV) and Consumer Price Index (CPI) to name a few. What does it all mean to the average citizen? How can we better articulate what the acronyms stand for? Instead of hiding behind all the jargon we use in carrying out our daily routines, let's try to stop using the acronyms and spell out the entire word or phrase. It may just help someone better understand the concept you are trying to explain.

As much as I enjoy the winter season (think hockey), I am sure most of you are ready to see the snow and cold disappear as warmer temperatures arrive. Springtime is just around the corner. Likewise, I hope you're beginning see the fog lift and get a better sense of where public education stands in regard to state funding and all that surrounds it. The 97th General Assembly convened in mid-January to set their agenda and the Governor’s budget address took place mid-February.

I know a Board Member who will stop any one of the board members or administrators who use an acronym in a public presentation and ask them to explain what it stands for. I think she is right in doing so. We too often get caught up in the issues and concepts; we fail to recognize that not everyone is up to speed with all of the information. So take the time necessary to help educate those that take an interest in what we do. It will pay dividends in the long run.

I look forward to having some certainty in my budget projections, and not having the rug pulled out from under me in mid-August when seemingly arbitrary reductions in mandated categorical payments (MCATS) are revealed without any rationale as to why they are being made. If we as school business professionals made those types of rash decisions in a very last-minute fashion, we would be up the proverbial creek. The madness has to stop for the benefit of the students in our school systems.

In the interest of becoming better communicators of what we do and how we do it, I challenge each of you to once again attend the Illinois ASBO Annual Conference to experience some of the best professional growth opportunities available. I suggest you choose one or two key concepts or ideas to share with your senior leadership team back in your district, your board and your respective local legislative representative. You'll likely be surprised how receptive these groups are to learning about the new ideas that you have chosen to share with them.

Communicating Your Value

While on the subject of MCATS, have you ever stopped to think about all the acronyms we use in our profession? Education Funding Advisory Board (EFAB), Governmental Accounting Standards Board

Garrick C. Grizaffi Asst. Supt./Admin. Services Valley View CSD 365-U

As we see seemingly greater turnover of our local legislative leaders in Springfield, Now More Than Ever it is crucial to See PODIUM page 17

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update Magazine / Spring 2011

perspective / Executive Director

from-the-office Happy New Year or Just More of the Same? As I write this article, it is New Year’s Eve. A good time to look back and forward at education policy and reform legislation. Unfortunately, looking back on 2010 and forward into 2011 is like looking in a mirror. Yes, some new issues may arise, but the larger and more troubling issues are the same. A $15 billion State of Illinois deficit, concern regarding pension reform, ongoing delays in mandated categorical payments, extension of lapsed payment deadlines, unpaid pension liabilities, continuing attacks on public education in the media and the list goes on. Even the holiday break of 2010 looked much like 2009. Last year it was Race to the Top legislation and this year it has been new education reform agendas surrounding teacher tenure, performance-based honorable dismissal of teachers (reduction in force) and dismissal for cause. There has also been additional focus on transparency related to school quality and spending. Both years, many of us who are referred to as “key stakeholders” were involved in discussions on Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve and many of the days in between. This is due to the desire of some entities that try to push legislation through prior to the end of the legislative session in mid-January. As you read this, some of those issues may have been resolved, but others will be ongoing discussions as new education reform committees have been established in both the House and the Senate. Each year that I experience the Illinois policy world and participate with our other Statewide Management Alliance partners

in legislative activity, I learn more about the value that Illinois ASBO brings to the discussion. In fact, I have often reflected on our theme for this year – Now More Than Ever, as it relates to what I experience in these statewide discussions. Because we represent best practice initiatives in school districts throughout the state and because Illinois ASBO members are up front and center in local policy issues, our expertise is extremely meaningful to legislators and others shaping the future of Illinois school policy. To them Illinois ASBO is needed Now More Than Ever!

Michael A. Jacoby executive director illinois asbo

The Illinois ASBO Delegate Advisory Assembly (DAA) is at the center of our commitment to changing education law. It is one of the most revered meetings of knowledgeable professionals seeking to pursue reform in key areas of school business management. Some of our Alliance partners from IASA (Illinois Association of School Administrators), IASB (Illinois Association of School Boards) and IPA (Illinois Principals

Business Partners: Illinois ASBO and IASB work to move legislation forward. Page 20

Association) as well as other partners such as ED-RED, LUDA (Large Unit District Association), LEND (Legislative Education Network of DuPage), SCOPE (South Cooperative Organization for Public Education), IARSS (Illinois Association – Regional Superintendents of Schools) See OFFICE page 17

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RON STEIGERWALD, STATEWIDE MARKETING DIRECTOR 847 567 3051 / update Magazine / Spring 2011

perspective / SAAC Chair

from-the-field Are you Ready for the Annual Conference? This year, the Illinois ASBO Annual Conference is shaping up to be one of the best conferences yet. Although the format will be similar to last year, changes are being made to continually improve the conference experience for all attendees. This year, the Thursday hospitality will be held in the Atrium with cocktail hour in the Exhibit Hall. We have found that this allows for more traffic in the booth areas. Check out the Annual Conference Preview on pg. 35 for details on how to participate in this year’s conference.

SAAC Maximize Conference Attend the SAAC pre-conference seminar to get a step up on your AC experience. Thursday, May 5 from 2:30–4:00 pm in the St. Charles Ballroom Salons

The SAAC will continue to host a pre-conference seminar, taking place on Thursday, May 5 from 2:30 pm to 4:00 pm in the St. Charles Ballroom Salons. The goal of this session is to help each person maximize their conference experience. We'll review the conference schedule, introduce new SAAC candidates, discuss how to get involved with PDC's and SAAC and more. Watch out for registration information on this great chance to preview the facilities and events and get the networking rolling. Networking is one of the key benefits to the Illinois ASBO Annual Conference, as all attendees, including Service Associates,

are welcome at all the events. Some of the best relationship building occurs after the Exhibit Hall closes. Don’t forget to sign up for the Annual Foundation Golf Outing, yet another relationship-building opportunity. The Illinois ASBO Foundation is a non-profit that recognizes excellence in school business management through scholarships and awards. This year the outing will be held at St. Andrews Golf Club in West Chicago, and is a great chance to support a great cause and enjoy a round of golf with fellow Illinois ASBO members.

Fenil J. Patel Vice President PMA Financial Network, inc.

I always look forward to meeting with committee members to brainstorm new ideas to enhance the Illinois ASBO experience for all Service Associate members. At the Service Associate Annual Business Meeting, Service Associates learn about committee activities for the last year and have the opportunity to let representatives know if there are any issues to be addressed. As you may have heard, the 2011 Illinois ASBO Annual Conference will mark our last year at the Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles. Although Pheasant Run has served us well, as the conference continues to grow Illinois ASBO needed to find a facility that offered additional space with updated amenities. This change is a testament to just how much the conference has grown and the value it provides to the attendees. The SAAC is already looking toward all the new and exciting networking opportunities that will be possible within the new facility. I look forward to seeing everyone at the Annual Conference!

Disclaimer PMA Financial Network, Inc. PMA Securities, Inc. and Prudent Man Advisors, Inc. are under common ownership. PMA Securities is a broker-dealer and municipal adviser registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board and is a member of Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Prudent Man Advisors, Inc. is an investment adviser registered with the SEC. This article was prepared for informational and/or educational purposes only without regard to any particular user’s investment objectives, financial situation or means. The content of this document is not to be construed as a recommendation, solicitation or offer to buy or sell any security, financial product or instrument; or to participate in any particular trading strategy in any jurisdiction in which such an offer or solicitation, or trading strategy would be illegal. Nor does it constitute any legal, tax, accounting or investment advice. Although the information contained in this article has been obtained from third-party sources believed to be reliable, PMA Financial Network, Inc. cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of such information. It is understood that PMA is not responsible for any errors or omissions in the content in this document and the information is being provided to you on an “as is” basis without warranties or representations of any kind.

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coming spring seminars


For full seminar listings including location and PDC sponsorship, check the current Calendar of Events that was included with UPDATE or visit and register for professional development today.

Illinois Association of School Business Officials


Northern Illinois University, IA-103 108 Carroll Avenue DeKalb, IL 60115-2829 P: 815.753.1276 / F: 815.753.9367 /

Update Editorial Advisory Board PDC COORDINATOR members Richard A. Lesniak, Ancillary Services Kristopher P. Monn, Educational Enterprise Grant L. Sabo, Facility Management Stacey L. Bachar, Financial Resource Management

march Mar 01, 2011 – 8:30 am

Mar 04, 2011 – 10:00 am Mar 03, 2011 – 9:00 am Mar 03, 2011 – 1:00 pm Mar 11, 2011 – 7:30 am Mar 15, 2011 – 8:30 am Mar 15, 2011 – 9:00 am Mar 16, 2011 – 9:00 am Mar 17, 2011 – 9:00 am Mar 22, 2011 – 8:30 am Mar 28, 2011 – 9:00 am

Ann C. Williams, Human Resource Management

Debt Issuance From A to Z: Important Topics School Administrators Need to Know - AAC #821 Optimizing IT Support Law & Negotiations School Board Issues Risk Management Seminar - AAC #442 Maintenance Operations ISDLAF+ User Group Seminar ISDLAF+ User Group Seminar ISDLAF+ User Group Seminar Energy Saving, Sustainability, LEED The Use of Student Growth Measures in Teacher Evaluations and/or Race to the Top Grants

april Apr 13, 2011 Apr 14, 2011 – 9:00 am Apr 14, 2011 – 1:00 pm Apr 19, 2011 – 8:30 am

IASA Annual Conference New 403b Audits Section 125 Plans Educational Facility Design, Renovation and Construction

Robert J. Ciserella, Information Management Kari L. Fair, Materials & Services Management Paul A. O'Malley, Sustainability

BOARD & EXTERNAL RELATION members Richard A. Lesniak, President Elect Dwain Lutzow, SAAC Vice Chair

AT-LARGE MEMBERS Angie Peifer, Illinois Association of School Boards Rich Voltz, Illinois Association of School Administrators

STAFF MEMBERS Michael Jacoby, Executive Director

815.753.9371, Susan P. Bertrand, Assistant Executive Director

815.753.9371, Angela D. Lehman, Communications Coordinator 815.753.9371, Sean P. O’Connor, Marketing Director 815.753.9393, Johnathon T. Strube, Editor / Designer 815.753.7654, Rebekah L. Weidner, Copywriter 815.753.9270,

Illinois ASBO Board of Directors Garrick C. Grizaffi, President Richard A. Lesniak, President-Elect Mark E. Staehlin, Treasurer Darrell J. Moon, Immediate Past President 2008-11 Board Directors

John A. Gibson, Stacey L. Mallek, Hillarie J. Siena 2009-12 Board Directors

Dennis Burnett, Nelson W. Gray, Raymond P. Negrete 2010-13 Board Directors


Susan L. Harkin, Beth L. Millard, Curtis J. Saindon

May 05, 2011 – 2:30 pm

May 17, 2011 – 8:30 am May 17, 2011 – 8:30 am

May 18 – 20, 2011

Service Associate Pre-Conference Networking Seminar Best Practices in Purchasing – AAC #852 The Administrator's Role in Collective Bargaining – AAC #809 Illinois ASBO 60th Annual Conference

Illinois ASBO Board Liaisons Fenil Patel, Service Associate

Advisory Committee Chairperson Dwain A. Lutzow, AIA, Service Associate Advisory Committee Vice Chair Terrie S. Simmons, ASBO International Liaison Gil Morrison, Regional Office of Education Liaison Debby I. Vespa, ISBE Board Liaison Dean M. Langdon, IASB Board Liaison

Privacy Policy All materials contained within this publication are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, displayed or published without the prior written permission of the Illinois Association of School Business Officials. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.

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update Magazine / Spring 2011

References, authorship or information provided by parties other than that which is owned by the Illinois Association of School Business Officials are offered as a service to readers. The editorial staff of the Illinois Association of School Business Officials was not involved in their production and is not responsible for their content.


Allen Albus

Stephen Bayles

Jim Fritts

Deputy Supt. /Fin. & Oper.

Substitute Teacher, Ottawa THS

Adj. Prof., Northeastern Illinois Univ.

Led Lake Forest districts through a leadership program before joining the Illinois ASBO Leadership Institute as a certified LIFO instructor. He served on the Board of Directors from 1999-2006 and as association president in 2004-2005.

Brings 18 years experience teaching Math and Science in Illinois and endorsement as a school business official. With two children in college, he is pursuing his second Masters degree and enjoys coaching and mentoring students.

Teaches courses in school administration. A retired business official, he calls on his own experiences as well as sources with expertise in virtually all aspects of school business to provide direction and insight.

Matt Geerdes

Bert Nuehring

Ben Schwarm

Manager, Crowe Horwath LLP

Partner, Crowe Horwath LLP

Associate Exec. Director, IASB

Provides auditing and consulting services to governmental and educational entities. With over nine years in public accounting, he is a presenter for Illinois ASBO among other associations and has authored articles for Crowe’s Government Advantage.

Has been in public accounting for over 24 years serving governmental and non-profit entities; including American Recovery and Reinvestment Act monitoring and reporting, performance auditing, project oversight and more.

Has worked for IASB as lobbyist for 21 years. He coordinates the efforts of the Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance lobby team day-to-day in the State Capitol, monitors federal legislation and writes Alliance Legislative Reports.

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special perspective / Editorial Advisory Board

Your Resource Your Perspective 01.



Read each profile to learn what these EAB members bring to the creative process.







UPDATE Editorial Advisory Board brings a wide-range of expertise to create a valuable publication and school business resource.



Illinois ASBO is all about providing relevant content and information that is indispensable to members. In order to draw out timely topics and fuel the UPDATE development, a team of key members will be convening for the first time this March 12.


as the UPDATE Editorial Advisory Board or EAB. The EAB mission is to identify topics, resources and tools that prove useful to members, ensuring the UPDATE remains the most

n PDC Coordinator Members n External Members n At-Large Members n Staff Members

anticipated resource for school business professionals. All EAB members have been active in Illinois ASBO for 3-5 years or more, bring expertise and perspective from a specific area of school business and have generously volunteered their time to take part in this exciting initiative.

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update Magazine / Spring 2011

PDC Coordinator Members 01. Rich Lesniak Dir. of Bus. Services, Lockport Township HSD 205

Illinois ASBO Resumé President Elect, Board of Directors, 2010–2011; Board Member, 2006-2009; PDC Coordinator: Ancillary Services; PDC Member: Food Service, Risk Management, Transportation; DAA Member Perspective With a background from teaching to hands-on in every aspect of ancillary services, Rich hopes to develop content that helps business officials maintain their high standards. 02. Kristopher Monn Asst. Supt. for Finance, Batavia USD 101

Illinois ASBO Resumé Board of Directors, 2006-2009; PDC Chair, Legal Issues; PDC Coordinator, Educational Enterprise; DAA Member Perspective Kris brings nine years of service on the Legal Issues PDC and has coordinated seminars on legal topics from environmental safety to personnel issues. He is excited to volunteer his time, ensuring the information presented is useful and high quality.

05. Ann Williams Treasurer / Director of Business & Operations, Bradley–Bourbonnais CHSD 307

Illinois ASBO Resumé PDC Member: Human Resource Management, Leadership Development; Past Chair: SSSBO Regional Perspective With a degree in Human Resource Management and studying for a doctorate in Educational Leadership, Ann is responsible for HR. She is excited to add to her knowledge and serve the Illinois ASBO membership as part of the EAB. 06. Robert Ciserella Asst. Supt. / Finance, Facilities & Operations, Glen Ellyn SD 41

Illinois ASBO Resumé PDC Coordinator: Information Management; PDC Chair: Technology; Vice President of SWASBO; DAA Member Perspective With over nine years at Illinois ASBO and seven in school business management, Robert believes in giving back to the organization, as “they’ve given me so many opportunities.” His experience gives him a keen eye for quality content.

03. Grant Sabo Asst. Supt. / Facilities and Transportation, Berkeley SD 87

07. Kari Fair Purchasing Supervisor, Township HSD 214

Illinois ASBO Resumé PDC Coordinator, Materials and Services Management; PDC Vice Chair, Purchasing; Speaker

Illinois ASBO Resumé PDC Coordinator: Facility Management; PDC Member: Maintenance and Operations, Planning and Construction, Facilities Designation Program Perspective Grant has been with Illinois ASBO as long as facility management, 20 years. He’s seen facilities change and evolve, as well as the Association and the UPDATE.

Perspective With 14 years in procurement from a community college to the second largest high school district in Illinois, Kari has been active in the Purchasing Committee for over six years. She feels privileged to collaborate on this valuable resource tool for members, passing on benefits Illinois ASBO provides.

04. Stacey Bachar Asst. Supt. for Business Services, Aptakisic-Tripp SD 102

08. Paul O’Malley Asst. Supt. / Business Services, Niles Twp. HSD 219

Illinois ASBO Resumé PDC Chair, Accounting and Auditing; DAA Member

Illinois ASBO Resumé PDC Coordinator and Chair, Sustainability; DAA Member; Speaker

Perspective With over 15 years working for schools, Stacey began as an accounting clerk while studying for her CPA. She's been involved with Illinois ASBO from day one and is excited for this chance to give back. Her take on the EAB: “We have the expertise, and if we don’t tap into it we won’t go anywhere.”

Perspective Paul brings his passion for adaptation and adopting processes that are better for the earth to the EAB. An Illinois ASBO member for over 5 years, he is excited to be a part of the change that guides the Association into the next generation of 21st century practices.

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External Members

Editorial Staff Members

09. Dwain Lutzow CEO, DLA Architects Limited

Sean O’Connor Marketing Director

Illinois ASBO Resumé SAAC Vice Chair 2010-2011; Annual Conference Presenter

Perspective Sean studied Visual Communication, Public Relations and Journalism in college and has worked at Chicagoland newspapers as a designer, reporter and copy-editor prior to Illinois ASBO. He is excited to make UPDATE a unique publication that will serve Illinois ASBO members as informational tool and marketing outlet.

Perspective Dwain brings a very broad background in facilities planning, working as an architect for schools. He is excited to bring the perspective of the Service Associate partners to the table, as they “think a little bit differently, and can add different insight on the articles that come about.” At-Large Members 10. Angie Peifer Associate Executive Director, IAS B

Illinois ASBO Resumé Professional collaborations with Illinois ASBO including the Educational Support Professionals Conference and Illinois Partnership Zone Grant Perspective She believes that everyone benefits when we work together to help our individual memberships better understand and appreciate the points of view of the other key management stakeholders. 11. Rich Voltz Assoc. Dir. of Prof. Dev. & Induction / Mentoring, IASA

Illinois ASBO Resumé Member for over 17 years; Presenter at multiple conferences Perspective A previous superintendent and Illinois ASBO member, Rich recognizes that the IASA serves many of the same members. He hopes to add input and learn more about what Illinois ASBO is offering to bring back to IASA. Executive Staff Members 12. Michael A. Jacoby Executive Director, Illinois ASBO

Perspective With 30+ years of experience in education from teacher to school business official to superintendent and now Executive Director of Illinois ASBO, Michael hopes to contribute a unique perspective on the key issues so that members can be prepared to lead their school district effectively. 13. Susan Bertrand Assistant Executive Director, Illinois ASBO

Perspective The EAB was an Illinois ASBO staff initiative and they've been working hard to make this vision a reality. Through a broad representation of members, the EAB can help elevate UPDATE to a recognized trade publication that, “will make others realize just how valuable a school business manager is to their district.” 16 |

update Magazine / Spring 2011

Angie Lehman Communications Coordinator

Perspective Angie has been with Illinois ASBO for eight years, working on the many Association publications. Prior to that, she worked as a desktop publisher for an Ophthalmology practice. She looks forward to helping implement the changes the EAB will bring.

Johnathon Strube Graphic Designer and Staff Editor

Perspective Johnathon brings years in visual journalism working as a designer for the Sun Times News Group. He currently studies and teaches Visual Communication at NIU pursuing a Master of Fine Arts. He hopes to create a high-quality communication with a unique combination of perspective and visual clarity to deliver messages that distill unique expressions on topics that add value to the member experience.

Rebekah Weidner Copywriter

Perspective Rebekah brings experience including a Bachelor of Science in Advertising from the University of Illinois, four years as a freelance communications writer and two years teaching English in Kiev, Ukraine. She hopes to bring a fresh voice to the UPDATE that relays important information to experienced business officials while remaining accessible to partners in the school profession.

perspective / Continued

PODIUM from page 7

become a valued resource to those leaders to help them understand how their decisions impact what happens in our school systems. The better you are able to communicate your ideas and concerns in a friendly, non-confrontational way, the better chance you'll have at success should you need their support in having legislation adopted or modified to help our schools.

As a closing thought, I'd like to share a conversation I had with a former school board member at the IASB/IASA/ IASBO Joint Annual Conference in Chicago this past November. He is now a school business administrator and his comment to me was that as a board member he had no idea how many balls we constantly keep in the air at any one time. Now that he has assumed the role of business official, he has a much deeper appreciation for what we do and how we do it. It was good to receive that

validation from someone who has seen it from both perspectives. I look forward to seeing many of you at the 60th Annual Illinois ASBO Conference at the Pheasant Run Resort on May 18-20, which if you do not already know, will be our last at that location in the foreseeable future. We will be hosting the conference in Peoria next year, then we're off to the Renaissance in Schaumburg in 2013 for several years thereafter.

I’m always proud of the quality of the discussion and the eventual recommendations the DAA brings to our Board of Directors. — Dr. Michael Jacoby, Illinois ASBO Executive Director

Monitor the DAA's ongoing work and what has been recommended to the Board of Directors at OFFICE from page 9

and others attend just to hear how our members can speak to issues “on the ground.” I’m always proud of the quality of the discussion and the eventual recommendations the DAA brings to our Board of Directors. To give you an idea how things work, after DAA recommendations are approved by the Board of Directors, Cal Jackson or I take these ideas to the Alliance representatives from the other management associations (IASB, IASA and IPA). We try as much as possible to carry these reform

ideas collectively and speak to them as the Statewide School Management Alliance. This gives them more weight among the many other interested parties who bring ideas forward in Springfield. If needed, we look for a sponsor and then nurture the legislation through the process. This may include testifying or speaking offline with legislators in order to provide clarity and promote passage. 2011 will be another interesting year, to say the least. Be sure to follow how Illinois ASBO leads the field in bringing about good changes to education legislation and policy

development. Don’t be afraid to be a part of change by submitting your own proposal for the DAA to review and consider. I do hope 2011 is a new year and that we finally see some movement on the state budget shortfalls. We will be vigilant to communicate the needs of local school districts to our legislators, the Illinois State Board of Education and Governor Quinn. Now More Than Ever it is critical for Illinois ASBO’s voice to be heard and you will find us involved in nearly every arena that impacts schools and students. We are your voice and we will be heard!

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perspective / Illinois ASBO Leadership Institute

By Allen J. Albus Deputy Supt. / Finance & Operations Lake Forest CHSD 115

path-to- success

School Business

Becoming a


leadership tools

Life Orientation Training, or LIFO™, recognizes that the way we as individuals interpret situations is fashioned from our values, goals and strengths. That in turn influences how we problem solve and communicate with others. LIFO gives you insight into how you view the world, and provides you with keys for identifying how others view the world. With that knowledge you can employ strategies to more effectively communicate with others, on both an individual and group level. Leadership Practices Inventory, or LPI™, has two components. The first is a self-assessment of how frequently you see yourself engage in certain leadership characteristics. The second is an assessment by a small group of people chosen by you that assesses how frequently they see you engage in certain leadership characteristics. The two assessments are then reconciled to identify gaps in perception. From there we can develop strategies to capitalize on strengths or opportunities to increase targeted behaviors. Situation, Behavior, Impact, or SBI™, is a technique that empowers individuals to give feedback to others in a way that is focused and nonthreatening. The reason it works is because the feedback focuses on the behavior, not the person. When feedback is delivered in a non-threatening way it is likely to be more clearly received by the recipient.

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update Magazine / Spring 2011

Being a school business official requires not only a certain level of technical expertise, but also highly developed communication skills. While many of us went through advanced college degree programs to obtain our technical training, there have not been as many avenues available to hone our communications skills — until now.

This past October the first cohort of the Illinois ASBO Leadership Institute kicked off with a two-day immersion program. The group met again for a full-day workshop and Administrator Academy at the Joint Conference and will meet one more time in March before passing the baton to the 2011 cohort at the Annual Conference. Reinforcement throughout gives participants a better chance of integrating skills into their individual leadership style. Several group challenges are also included in the curriculum that are both fun and reinforce the importance of effective communication.

perspective / Illinois ASBO Foundation

supporting role Get inspired by t hose who have led the way

JOIN the CELEBRATION The Annual Foundation Recognition Banquet at this year’s Annual Conference will take place Thursday, May 19, from 6:00–8:30 pm in the St. Charles Ballroom. There, recipients will be recognized for awards and scholarships including: SSSBO Regional Scholarship; SWASBO Regional Scholarship; Illinois ASBO School Business Management Scholarship; and Monarch Award.

GET a VISION Don't miss this great opportunity to witness what others are doing, get a vision for the future of school business, and give back to the profession!

The Illinois ASBO foundation constantly seeks out opportunities to elevate the school business management profession. Through the prestigious awards presented at the Annual Conference, they recognize the achievements of business officials who have demonstrated excellence in service and outstanding practices in their districts and communities ... bringing visibility and credibility to the field. Award recipients have the opportunity to give to back to educational charities they care about and promote public appreciation of quality in school business services.

a closer look By listening in on award recognitions, business officials gain a vision for what they too can achieve. Last year, through recognition he received from the Monarch Award, Rich Pagliaro went on to receive ASBO International’s prestigious Eagle Award. He noted this as “truly the most gratifying moment in my career as a school business administrator.” Give back to those who will follow Through scholarships awarded to students furthering their education in school business management and/or business officials seeking certification, the Foundation also paves the way for new leaders to emerge.

“Our state organizations and ASBO International have provided us with the tools and knowledge to be confident and successful in our careers. It is our responsibility to give back to those who will follow us in the future.”


— Rich Pagliaro in his Eagle Award acceptance speech

The Dr. Craig Schilling Annual Conference Scholarship gives a full registration scholarship to a student in School Business Management. See what Stephen Bayles had to say about his experience on pg. 23.

By giving back to the Illinois ASBO Foundation, members have the opportunity to support future leaders in school business. You can learn more by visiting

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perspective / Illinois Association of School Boards

business Partners To the Point

When school business practitioners call up their Legislator, it has more weight because it’s coming from a constituent, a person who has a hand in running schools where they live.

Your Strategic Alliance » Ben Schwarm, (above) Associate Executive Director and head of Government Relations for the Illinois Association of School Boards (IASB) and longtime contributor to Illinois ASBO’s Delegate Advisory Assembly, discusses how a partnership between Illinois ASBO, IASB, IASA and IPA helps move legislation forward.

How it All Began… Years ago, each member organization of what is now the Statewide School Management Alliance, including Illinois ASBO, IASB, the Illinois Association of School Administrators (IASA) and the Illinois Principals Association (IPA), had some type of presence in the capital. When a liaison met with a legislator, they’d often get a response of, “Gee, you already told me that!” Turns out, they were all speaking out about the same issues, and often had the same ideas. In a sense, they were already working together but forming the Alliance made things more official. A Logical Partnership = A Formidable Presence With the four organizations combined, the Alliance represents every school district in the state and has a strong presence in Springfield. Each brings expertise from a corner of school management. For example, when issues on finance, budgeting or taxes arise everyone can immediately go to Illinois ASBO members for answers. All of this makes the Alliance the go-to people for Legislators when it comes to issues that affect schools. A team of six lobbyists are present each day the House or Senate is in session. They look at every bill introduced (6,000 to 7,000 a year) and find the ones that matter to school districts (usually 700 to 800). Then, they go to work testifying at committees and providing valuable information and insight to legislators.

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The Next Step? For members to get involved! This starts with reading the information sent out to you from the Alliance. The Alliance Legislative Reports e-mailed out to Illinois ASBO members give you a running dialogue on relevant bills all the way up to the final vote. Next, form a relationship with your local Legislator. You don’t have to go to Springfield. Make an appointment with them in their district office and offer yourself as a resource. You’ll be surprised how often they take you up on the offer. When school business practitioners call up their Legislator, it has more weight because it’s coming from a constituent, a person who has a hand in running schools where they live.

From Springfield to your Screen Access an archive of Alliance Legislative Reports on the IASB website at:

Find more legislative resources on pg. 49

perspective / On the Profession

school business 101 If you could bring one issue concerning school business before the Illinois Legislature, what would it be? Patricia A. Fournier

Director of Business Operations, Arbor Park School District 145

Illinois ASBO is Crowd-Sourcing the Issues: Illinois ASBO members have been and will be asked to answer the important questions facing all industry professionals.

A: Like many, I believe that the current school funding mechanisms provide neither the parity nor equity to ensure that all children in Illinois are offered quality educational opportunities. It’s time for the legislature to begin discussions that will move funding away from property taxes as the main source of revenue. Until legislators are willing to confront the political realities surrounding this issue, the disparities that contribute to the achievement gap between students from property rich areas and economically disadvantaged backgrounds will not be resolved.

Ali Mehanti

Fiscal Services Administrator, Oak Park Elementary School District 97

A: State Funding. We are so far behind - 46th or 47th in the nation. I would just ask them to pay on time. In Oak Park, we are not heavily dependent on state aid, but we feel bad for other districts that are. Also, unfunded mandates. The government requires services but doesn't fund them, which usurps school district financial resources.

Barbara Germany

Business Manager, Mokena District 159

Have a question or issue that needs to be addressed by School Business 101? Submit your ideas or questions to Rebekah Weidner at

A: I would say General State Aid because there are so many disparities in the formula. I'm concerned about mandated categoricals. They require us to provide services, and they're not paying us!

Victor Berner

Retired School Business Official

A: Pension. Where are we going with this? People looking toward pension are wondering, “Will I be receiving it and at what rate?� Like anything else, this impacts taxes and state budgets. Right now the average pension is $20,000 a year, and many of these people are not receiving social security. Some receive as little as $5,000.

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Stephen Bayles, Recipient of the 2010 Dr. Craig Schilling Annual Conference Scholarship, looks back on his experience at the 2010 Annual Conference ‌ bringing to light some pointers for AC11 first timers, or really anyone who’s new to school business management or Illinois ASBO.

for first time 22 |

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article / Point of View Insight into the Issue

01. Be Prepared to Learn as Much as You Can – The conference experience truly made me realize all that Illinois ASBO does and all the vendors and people you work with as a business manager. 02. Look for Ways to get Involved Afterward – Find out when your local meetings are and push your experience forward by attending. After the conference, I started attending the South Suburban CSBO meetings and now attend every month. The experience of the conference helped me understand how important this is.


03. Be Open to Meeting New People – The conference was a great opportunity for me to meet other business managers, especially coming in new to school business management. 04. Attend Some of the Smaller Sessions – I enjoyed the opening session and seeing everyone introduced, but it was really nice to get in a small group and learn more specific topics. I benefited from some of the meetings that school districts held on topics meaningful everyday for business managers, like budgeting. 05. Decide to Contribute – The smaller sessions are your chance to contribute to the Conference. It’s easier to connect there. Ask questions of the speaker, add to the discussion, and use this great opportunity to network! 06. Listen to Speakers from your District – I attended classes put on by people I knew locally from my district or others around me. This helped me establish a comfort level; it was good to know the speaker and hear what they had to say. 07. Explore the Exhibit Hall – It was great to see all the different kinds of vendors that assist us every day as school business managers.


“The conference was a great opportunity for me to meet other business managers, especially coming in new to school business management.”

— Stephen Bayles on attending Annual Conference Learn more about the Illinois ASBO Foundation Recognition Banquet on pg. 19 … and plan to attend!

08. Network at the Hospitalities – The hospitalities were a great opportunity to see people I knew, and this is where I met many new people from new districts. It was easier to socialize there because it’s a less formal atmosphere. 09. Attend the Foundation Awards Banquet – It was such an honor. It was a nice experience going up on stage at the Awards Banquet, and sitting at a table with other recipients. 10. Don’t be Overwhelmed – There is a sense of camaraderie in knowing that you are all members of the same organization, and knowing you can partake in what other members partake in. The Annual Conference is a great way to get to know everything available to you as an Illinois ASBO member.


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2011 Annual Conference 60 Indespensable Years of School Business Management

pheasant run resort | may 18–20 2011 24 |

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Rebekah Weidner copywriter illinois asbo

This year, districts all over Illinois seem to be asking the same questions. How do we keep staff motivated and connected when budgets are tight? Find opportunities to network and gain inspiration ... Events / 26–29

How do we plan ahead when it's unsure what we will receive and when? Find "How-To" get the most from Annual Conference ... " Guide" / 30–31

How can districts and business officials do more with less? Make the most of professional development dollars ... Sessions / 32–33 While many issues remain unclear, one thing is certain… The 2011 Illinois ASBO Annual Conference is an investment that is worth its weight in gold for business managers, districts and ultimately, children. Through two and a half days of non-stop networking and learning, the Annual Conference is an opportunity to find solutions for today’s challenges ... while enjoying the best that Illinois ASBO membership has to offer. NOW MORE THAN EVER stay connected and inspired as you gain tools and confidence.

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STAY ACTIVE By making a conscious decision to stay active, you make a statement to your staff, Board and district: My involvement is valuable, now more than ever. As first-time attendee Stephen Bayles found at his visit to the Annual Conference in 2010, (See the full article on p. 23) the Conference is a great reminder of “how exciting it is to be a member and that you can be a part of Illinois ASBO.” The Conference presents many great opportunities to bring value to your Illinois ASBO membership, including the Annual Business Meeting and the Professional Development Committee Meeting. The first will come at Wednesday’s Annual Business Meeting, taking place from 11:30 am –11:45 am at the end of the Opening General Session in the St. Charles Ballroom. Stick around to learn about the business side of things including: • The financial status of Illinois ASBO, and photos by sean o'connor / illinois asbo

Above: Jean Sophie, Superintendent at Westchester PSD 92.5, meets with Robert Jackson, Education Consultant of Performance, prior to the Opening General Session at the during the 2010 Annual Conference. Previous page: Left: Illinois ASBO will celebrate its 60th Annual Conference in 2011 at Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles. Center: Jim Gillen of MetLife Resources meets with school district attendees in the Exhibit Hall. Right: Illinois ASBO Executive Director, Dr. Michael Jacoby, welcomes Curt Saindon to the Board of Directors.

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• A comprehensive look at the Association.

By taking part in the transition of members to new leadership positions within the Board of Directors, you demonstrate your support and gratitude for all that goes on behind the scenes to provide you with the best resources and professional development available in school business. The Service Associates Annual Business Meeting on Wednesday, May 19, from 3:15 pm – 4:05 pm will be another “don’t miss” opportunity to hear about issues directly affecting Illinois ASBO service partners. Probably one of the best occasions to add value to your Illinois ASBO membership will come on Thursday morning when the Professional Development Committees meet over breakfast on Thursday, May 19 from 8:30 am – 10:00 am. (More on p. 31) Getting involved is as easy as finding your table, sitting down and introducing yourself! Take part in one of 19 committees to discuss potential seminar topics for the upcoming year. Then, decide to stay involved by attending committee meetings throughout the year.

Article / Annual Conference, Pheasant Run Resort, May 18–20, 2011

Speakers Who Inspire Teri Yanovitch Creating a Culture of Excellence Opening General Session Wednesday, May 18 10:00 am – 11:30 am

Stephen Sroka The Power of One Closing General Session Friday, May 20 8:30 am – 10:15 am

Get the inspiration rolling. The opening session sets the tone for the entire Conference, and there is no better person to do that then Teri Yanovitch – a dynamic and insightful author and speaker who has helped ignite cultural change in diverse organizations like Walt Disney, AAA, Johnson & Johnson and more. Learn to create world-class service that is more than just a motto or ideal, but instead a way of life ... seeping into every corner of your school, district and community.

Leave with insights to share. Stephen Sroka will cap off the conference with his inspirational speech on the “Power of One.” Sroka is so passionate about making communities and schools safe and drug free, that he’ll speak to anyone who’ll listen… and he has spoken to everyone from teachers to students to faculty to medical professionals and faith organizations. He firmly believes that the more people who join in this crucial battle ... the faster we’ll see healthier students who learn more.

Find out more at:

Find out more at:


On Thursday evening, get inspired by those who’ve led the way in service to school business by attending the Annual Foundation Recognition Banquet. Gain a vision for the future of school business as you witness the recognition of scholarship recipients who are ready to get off and running in the profession.

When budgets and staff are running low and stress is running high, inspiration can feel like the first thing to go. Yet, in times like these, an inspired staff is integral to the success of your institution. Find inspiration to pass along as the Conference kicks off on Wednesday, May 18 at 10:00 am with acclaimed speaker Terri Yanovitch. Terri will pass on her experience as a former Disney Institute keynote speaker and seminar leader, to engage, entertain and inspire each attendee to create and sustain service excellence for their institution.

Dr. Stephen Sroka, an internationally recognized motivational speaker, trainer, author, teacher, professor and consultant will close the conference on Friday morning by inspiring us on the “power of one” person in making a difference in our districts and communities. With a host of other events, sessions and speakers in between, the Annual Conference has the potential to keep you inspired to “dream more, learn more, do more and become more” well beyond your time at Pheasant Run.

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Susan Harkin, left, and Dave Bein team up for some competitive fun during the Wednesday Game Night Hospitality sponsored by the Illinois ASBO Service Associate members. Be sure to bring your A-Game to the Wednesday night Hospitality in the St. Charles Ballroom from 8:00 pm – 11:30 pm.

STAY CONNECTED Connections made at the Annual Conference could prove essential as everyone strives to “do more with less.” Meeting other like-minded professionals through networking at hospitalities and throughout the event is about more than just sharing today’s challenges: It’s about sharing solutions that initiate positive change for school districts. Throughout the conference, whether at sessions large or small, you’ll find that you’re not alone in facing the challenges of today’s financial climate. As you contribute to a breakout session on a topic you’re knowledgeable about, network within the Exhibit Hall, or encounter an old friend, each connection made will make the Annual Conference a more worthwhile investment.

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Article / Annual Conference, Pheasant Run Resort, May 18–20, 2011

There’s no better way to make these valuable connections than joining in the fun at one of the many hospitality events:


• On Wednesday from 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm, chat with Service Associates and colleagues as you check out new services and products at the Exhibit Hall Hospitality. There, you can meet up with friends for dinner during your free time from 5:30 pm – 8:00 pm.

With the looming question of “What are we going to receive and when?” professional development can easily take the back burner to in the face of pressing financial issues. This challenge creates a great opportunity to demonstrate how your Illinois ASBO membership creates value for your school, district and community.

• Make sure to come back after dinner on Wednesday to show off your skills at billiards, bags, shuffle board or even the Nintendo Wii new at the Game Night put on by the Illinois ASBO Service Associate Advisory Committee, starting at 8:00 pm.

Whether through informative sessions from industry movers or a money-saving connection made in the Exhibit Hall, the Annual Conference is your chance to get on the forefront of school business.

• On Thursday, mingle and catch up with friends at the hospitality prior to the Annual Foundation Recognition Banquet in the Atrium from 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm. • After the Banquet, kick back and relax while connecting with old friends and making new connections at the Illinois ASBO Hospitality and Gong Show. Showcase your vocal skills, or lack thereof, in the New Orleans Ballroom.

As you make your way through the conference, make a decision to be proactive in your networking; whether it’s introducing yourself to other participants in your sessions or in the Exhibit hall or participating in committee meetings and hospitalities. You never know where or from whom you’ll find the insight or solution that makes all the difference for your district.

Even before the Conference officially begins, learn the ins-and-outs of school finance or squeeze in your professional development hours to renew your certificate through pre-conference seminars on Tuesday, May 18 from 8:00 am – 3:30 pm. This year, learn the tricks of the trade or refresh you knowledge in: • Best Practices in Purchasing • The Administrator’s Role In Collective Bargaining Register for these pre-conference seminars online at:


You’ll also find value and money saving solutions at the Exhibit Hall. Open on Wednesday from 11:30 am – 3:00 pm and 4:15 pm – 5:30 pm, and on Thursday from 12:00 pm – 2:00pm, this is your chance to partner with Illinois ASBO Service Associate Members who will no doubt bring value to your organization, network with other business officials, and enjoy complementary lunch.

With so many uncertainties in school business today, the Illinois ASBO Annual Conference is more than just a capstone experience to end the school year … it is a strategy to help your district stay afloat.

With so many uncertainties in school business today, the Illinois ASBO Annual Conference is more than just a capstone experience to end the school year… it is a strategy to help your district stay afloat. Take this opportunity to kick up your feet and leave the office behind, and come back with concrete resources that demonstrate your value as a school business official ... now more than ever. See you there!

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conference How-to guide:

Make the most of Annual Conference: Before, During and After Now more than ever, Business Managers must be ready to account for the value they will bring back to their district when the conference is over. Connecting at the Illinois ASBO Annual Conference can reach beyond the networking at the event ... all the way back to your home organization. Here are some tips to keep you and your district connected to the value of Annual Conference.

Before the conference

Reflection & Preparation Make a commitment to your staff

Promise that you’ll share what you learn, and consider specific ways you plan to do that. Make a list of your district needs

Ask your staff if they have burning questions. Or, give them your brochure and ask if any of the session topics look helpful. Make a plan of attack

Consider, “Am I looking for any specific products and/or vendor solutions? ” Look at the list of tradeshow exhibits to plan ahead which booths in the Exhibit Hall you’ll visit.

Right: Illinois ASBO Service Associate and School District members share insight at the 2010 Professional Development Committe planning meeting.

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Know a non-member that would benefit from Annual Conference? You should have received two VIP passes in the mail to bring your district personnel along to experience the Exhibit Hall at our 60th Annual Conference & Exhibitions. They’ll have the chance to: • Explore the Illinois ASBO Exhibit Floor featuring more than 180 exciting

products and services that could prove economical for your district. • Enjoy free lunch stations while networking with peers and vendors who

could provide valuable advice and insight. • Listen in on informative sessions specific to Transportation, Food Service,

Support Staff, Facilities and Technology. Exhibit Hall hours will be: Wednesday, May 18 / 11:30 am – 3:00 pm, 4:15 pm – 5:30 pm Thursday, May 19 / 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm

This is a great way to show your district that you are committed to making the most out of your investment in the Annual Conference. To register your guests, please visit:

Don’t forget to Complete Your Annual Conference Registration Do you hold one of these membership categories? Active III, Active IV, Student Premier, or Past President? If you do, your membership status entitles you to attend the Annual Conference. However, you must register for the Conference so that your packet will be waiting for you. Experience all that the Conference has to offer ... now more than ever. Visit to see all that awaits you this May!

Article / Annual Conference, Pheasant Run Resort, May 18–20, 2011

during the conference Keep a Running List E-mail yourself one to two times daily with ideas/inspiration, useful contacts you’ve made, conversations you’d like to have with staff when you return, etc. Keep your Staff in Tune Consider sending out daily e-mails of what you’re learning. It can be very informal, i.e. a few brief talking points.

Follow the Conference Online Add to your conference experience through your inbox and on Twitter! Daily Emails:

Twitter Feeds:

Watch for your daily conference e-mail to find reminders of each day's "don't miss" events, information on room changes or other schedule changes, and other tips to make the most of your day.

Follow hashtag #ac11 to see up-tothe-minute happenings about the conference, as well as, thoughts from your peers. Add #ac11 to your Twitter posts to share your thoughts about a class, share about an exciting event or maybe even gather a group for dinner.

Stay Active: Professional Development Committee Meetings Participating in a PDC lays a foundation to build on throughout your career. Joining a PDC is all about:

• Networking with others who face similar challenges. • Voicing concerns that you would like to see seminars about. • Establishing yourself as an expert in your field. • Building a bridge to higher levels of involvement … maybe even to the Board of Directors someday!

On Thursday, May 19 at 8:30 am plan to participate at the PDC Planning Meeting and Breakfast. Find a full list of PDCs at:

after the conference Promoting the Value of the Annual Conference to your District in Three Easy Steps 1. Share lesson notes with staff:

Give notes to people on your staff and offer to train them so that they can address their area of expertise. Have conversations about changes you’d like to implement.

2. Share value with your district:

Write a summary of your conference experience with specific points that you hope to implement change to share with your district/school board.

3. Connect the conference sessions to your organizational goals for FY12:

Come back with plan of action, so you can show concrete change come registration time next year.

Ideas for this conference approach adapted from: Ideas to Action: Ten Hints for Getting the Most from a Conference.

By Joan Getmann and Nikki Reynolds. Educause Quarterly, November 3, 2002.

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Stay Active:

Annual Conference Professional Developement Sessions Professional Development Committees have formulated over 80 breakout sessions to meet the concerns of school business head-on and provide solutions to today’s challenges. Wednesday, May 18 / 8:45 am – 9:45 am • Accounting and Audit Update:

Top Ten Things Districts Need to Know • Budget Assumptions and Financial Projections • How Can My District Take Advantage of

Historically Low Borrowing Rates? • Are You Ready to Handle the Two Tier Pension System? • Understanding the Impact of Personalities in Bargaining • 403(b) Audits • School Finance Borrowing for the Novice • Springfield Update • Social Networking: Face the Threats. Are You Exposed? • Buying vs. Leasing: Recycle Technology

Wednesday, May 18 / 1:05 pm – 2:05 pm • Dashboard: Process to Get Started / Models in Use • Local School Districts Victimized by Cyber Theft:

Will Your District Be Next? • Introduction to the Facilities

Management Designation Program • HUSSC: Going For Gold! • FMLA and Other Leaves of Absence • Inventory Management for Facilities

James Wuerffel , left, and Kent Blake take a moment to share success after collaborating at the professional development committee meeting during the 2010 Annual Conference at Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles.

• Prioritizing Facility Needs Within a Limited Budget • Educational Reform Update • Benefits to School District for Being a Member

of a Special Education Cooperative • Your Bus Drivers Are on Strike, Now What?

• The Owner's Role During Construction Projects:

What You Need to Know • State and Federal Changes Affecting Public Finance • Are We Making Mandated Programs Larger

Than They Need To Be? Wednesday, May 18 / 2:15 pm – 3:15 pm • GASB 54: How It Impacts Financial Reporting • Construction Issues and Labor Strikes • How Does the Facility Manager Support the Business Manager 32 |

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• Protect Your District from Fraud During Tough Times • LEED-EBOM • Disaster Recovery - Business Continuity • Using Technology to Improve Your

Transportation Services

Article / Annual Conference, Pheasant Run Resort, May 18–20, 2011

Wednesday, May 18 / 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm • Healthcare Reform Financial Planning • Referendum in Recession • Analyze This: A Practical Approach to Food Service Costs • Creating Cost Savings and Tax Efficient Retirement • • • • • •

Incentives Promoting the Business Manager in Challenging Economic Times Fair Labor Standards Act What Don't I Know About Facility Management Legal Aspects of Your Construction Project Electronic Bidding Responding to Bus Accidents

Thursday, May 19 / 10:15 am – 11:15 am • ISBE State Audits: Most Common Mistakes • New Revenues Are Happening

with the School Facilities Sales Tax • Go Fish (Philosophy) • Using Social Media to Improve

Organizational Communication • Education Funding Advisory Board (EFAB):

What Does the Next Round Hold? • Budgeting and Tracking Your District’s Volatile Energy Costs • Cook County Assessment Tax Appeals and Multipliers • Avoid Surprises: Comply with Purchasing Mandates – Part I • Special Ed Funding Option for Cooperative • Integrating Sustainability Into Curriculum

Thursday, May 19 / 11:30 pm – 12:30 pm • Budgeting for Healthcare Trends and the Impact of

Healthcare Reform • Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Updates • Implementing a Vision: A Long Range Plan from

Concept to Construction

Thursday, May 19 / 2:10 pm – 3:10 pm • Excellence in Financial Reporting: Preparing a Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) for Certificate of Excellence Award • Business Manager Day: Communicating Value • Weathering the Current Investment Market: Understanding the Factors Invovled in Your District's Returns • Preparing for a Food Service Audit • Health Care Reform • Hot Legislative Topics • Creative Solutions for Funding the Design and Construction of Educational Facilities • School Finance: Revenues for the Novice (Property Tax & Tax Levy) • Legal Aspects of Bidding • Cloud Computing: SAAS Thursday, May 19 / 3:25 pm – 4:25 pm • Do You Know How Many Staff Members Are in Your District? • Qualified School Construction Bonds: The Least Expensive Way to Borrow • Why 403(b) & 457(b) Plans are More Important Than Ever and What is Best Practice? • Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Updates • Mold in Schools: A Practical Overview for Facility and Administrative Staff • Delivering School Construction Successfully, Regardless of Delivery Method • School Finance: Revenues for the Novice (State Aid & Grants) • Pension Reform • Pros and Cons of Cooperative Purchasing: It Is More Than You Think • Going Green When You're Short on Green

• School Finance: Expenditures for the Novice • Web Sites: What Is Required? • Avoid Surprises: Comply with Purchasing Mandates – Part II

• Sustainability: Lessons Learned

Too many sessions to choose from? Remember to visit the Electronic Resource Center post-Conference to get the notes from sessions you missed.

• Data Driven Decision Making

Past conference material and more:

• The 'AED' is not 'ART.' Dust It Off! • Current Funding Topics in Special Education

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The latest from the

Education Funding Advisory Board EFAB Recommends FY2012 Foundation Level and Proposes a Study Agenda for the Future Ten years after its first recommendation reached the General Assembly in January 2001, the Educational Funding Advisory Board (EFAB, the Board) submitted a multi-part recommendation for the FY2012 Foundation Level and Poverty Grant, along with continued study of several elements of the General State Aid (GSA) formula. The recommendations reached the General Assembly as it grappled in the lame duck session in January with the state’s budget crisis. Mindful of this, the Board stated that, "Although the state is facing a historic short term budget deficit and some daunting long term budget challenges, we believe it is our responsibility to bring forth recommendations that truly represent what we believe is necessary to provide every student in every Illinois public school access to a quality education." Reaching these goals would take great effort over multiple years, requiring politicians, policymakers, and citizens alike to bear the responsibility to find the will and the means to achieve the goals.

The file on current EFAB Members

Funding Educational Opportunity: Guiding Principles In its report, EFAB states four guiding principles to adequately fund educational opportunity in Illinois:

The Board consists of five members appointed by the Governor in the spring of 2009 for a four year term with the advice and consent of the Senate:

1. Ensure the foundation level is sufficient to provide a comprehensive, high-quality

Sylvia Puente of Chicago

2. Guarantee that the state share of public school funding provides a reliable,

Executive Director of the Latino Policy Forum Dean Clark of Glen Ellyn

An Executive of Graphic Chemical and Ink Co. Arthur Culver

Superintendent of Champaign Unit District 4 Ed Geppert, Jr of Westmont

President of the Illinois Federation of Teachers Ken Swanson of Springfield

President of the Illinois Education Association

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education that prepares every student in Illinois to flourish in a global society.

predictable, timely and adequate funding stream. 3. Ensure that categorical and other targeted funds (including, but not limited to

poverty grants, special education, transportation, English language learning, and Early Childhood Education) are sustained year to year and are sufficient to meet the needs of students. 4. Eliminate the gap of real educational opportunities for all students

in Illinois by reducing funding disparities to establish functional equity. They noted that the definition of adequate GSA is intertwined with sufficient funding of the categorical program costs that are not included in the current GSA foundation level appropriation or in the calculations of recommended future levels.


James B. Fritts Adjunct Professor Northeastern Illinois University

Foundation Level and Poverty Formula Acknowledging that a multi-year effort may be required to reach the recommended funding level, the Board recommended an FY2012 foundation level of $8,360. The recommendation was based on the parameters in the Augenblick and Myers “successful and efficient” school adequacy model. In that model:

Successful districts are those with 67 percent or better of their students meeting or exceeding test standards. Efficient districts are those where the actual Operating Expense per Pupil is less than the predicted amount produced by a regression of education factors. Outlying poverty-impacted districts are excluded from the sample and district expenditures are adjusted by a regional cost index.

Although the state is facing a historic short term budget deficit and some daunting long term budget challenges, we believe it is our responsibility to bring forth recommendations that truly represent what we believe is necessary to provide every student in every Illinois public school access to a quality education.

EFAB recommended adjusting the per pupil wealth range in the Supplemental General State Aid Poverty Grant from the current $355 to $472 at the 15% low-income student ratio and from $2,994 to $3,981 at the maximum poverty level, adjusting them for the Employment Cost Index. The estimated additional cost of this adjustment is $441.2 million. During their January meeting, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) also approved a set of recommendations for FY2012 to be sent to the Governor and General Assembly. These included a $709,474,000 increase in the agency budget (10.2%), with 75% or $532 million designated for General State Aid. ISBE’s budget increases the foundation level to $6,416, significantly lower than EFAB’s $8,360. Their Supplemental Poverty Grant recommendations increase the minimum grant per pupil to $374 (EFAB $472) and the maximum grant to $3,099 (EFAB $3,981). More study is needed to understand the differences in EFAB and ISBE recommendations and where the true reality lies in terms of what an adequate level of school funding is at and what changes need to be made.

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Information for this article was taken from the agenda materials, presentations and discussions at the EFAB meetings from August-December 2010. Special thanks go to ED-RED Executive Director Erika Lindley and Illinois ASBO Executive Director Michael Jacoby for providing information on EFAB meetings that were held in Springfield. Quoted passages in the article are from the final EFAB report and, where cited, from supplemental exhibits.

Formula Elements to Consider Much of EFAB’s work over the past two years has been examining formula elements in light of realities in distribution of General State Aid funds, poverty rates and current standards of measuring district success and funding adequacy. Reform proponents and an appointed Advisory Board brought many facts and ideas to the process, which may direct the Board’s work for the FY2014 budget year. Some issues brought to the Board’s attention were:

1. The impact of the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law (PTELL) —

Finding the Right Equation for Change Implications of the "double whammy," growth in Poverty Grant appropriations and a limited definition of school success all factor in to school funding formula reform.

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on GSA and how actual tax rates and local resources compare to the assumed rates and resources used for GSA calculations has changed dramatically over the past decade. The cost of the PTELL adjustment, which is not itemized in the State budget for General State Aid, has soared from $46 million in FY2000 to $680 million in FY2011, after peaking at $805 million in FY2008. This cost, combined with the additional GSA dedicated to poverty grants has left very little to increase the foundation level to compensate districts with low tax bases. Implications of this “double whammy” adjustment’s drain on GSA appropriation deserve continuing study. 2. The Department of Human Services (DHS) low-income count — the basis

for Poverty Grant appropriations to districts, has grown from 505,598 in 2001 to 946,534 in 2009 — almost half of the state’s students are now considered low income. This growth has redirected an increasing proportion of GSA funds to Poverty Grants, which require

$1,348,600 (29.3%) of the FY2011 GSA appropriation of $4.6 billion (not including the federal Education Jobs Fund). By comparison, Poverty Grants required $388 million (2.2%) of the FY2003 GSA appropriation of $3.184 billion. Like the PTELL adjustment, the poverty grant totals are not broken down in the ISBE GSA budget line. 3. The definition of “successful school district” — is dated in light of

the escalating Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) benchmarks of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law, which are 85% for the current year, increasing in stages to 100% in FY2014. Moreover, only 78 (20.7%) of elementary districts, 100 (25.3%) of unit districts and (3.9%) of high school districts currently meet EFAB success parameters based on the methodology specified in the original legislation that established EFAB. With such a limited definition of successful schools, the computed adequacy figure becomes meaningless.

Article / The latest from the Education Funding Advisory Board

Meeting the needs of every district New funding models move away from the "one size fits all" approach.

Models for Funding Success Look for the next round of EFAB discussions to address ways of determining “adequacy” and “success.” As 2010 deliberations drew to a close, EFAB compared the Augenblick and Myers Successful School Adequacy Model to an “EvidenceBased Adequacy Model,” developed by Michelle Turner Mangan and Ted Purinton at National-Louis University.* This model draws on experimental studies and comprehensive reform models to build prototype schools that model what's needed for all schools in Illinois to be effective. By using current statewide costs for all categories of school operations, the model can be used to compute additional resources required according to the educational and resource needs of each school district — rather than a “one size fits all” approach to foundation funding. The Mangan-Purinton report illustrated three options by which this approach would be used to establish foundation funding levels: 1. A foundation level of $12,572 without any funds for the Poverty Grant —

to be supplemented by per pupil categorical grants based on free and reduced lunch counts, English Language Learner (ELL) services and grants for students with severe and profound disabilities. 2. A foundation level of $10,856 as a base for all districts — with $1,716 per

pupil allocated through a grant distributed proportionately according to poverty and ELL counts. 3. A shift to more heavily weigh the foundation level side — to be phased in over

5 years and based on researched class size recommendations. Starting from a total 2008 actual state and local revenue figure of $10,822 per pupil, establishes a $6,469 foundation level for 2011-12 plus a combined $4,703 Poverty and ELL grant: $11,172 combined per student — with costs of severe and profound disabilities to be fully covered by state aid. The revenue base would increase annually up to $12,572 in 2015-16 — a $10,856 foundation level plus $1,716 Poverty/ELL grant.

Fresh Look at Reorganization At its final meeting in December, the Board reviewed a staff report on School Organization that related district type, size and organization to the percentage of students in schools meeting proficiency requirements at various levels. The report also related the recent history of school district reorganizations, along with the amounts of state incentive funds provided to each new district. The brief Board discussion noted that a fresh look at the topic of reorganization was needed, to bring savings that could help bridge the gap between recommended and actual funding levels. No recommendation was made as a result of the report, but it seems likely that the issue could resurface in future deliberations. What deliberations will take place in EFAB’s next cycle, may depend on whether the General Assembly broadens its charge to EFAB beyond the foundation level and poverty formula, giving it flexibility to consider alternatives to the 1990 efficiency/ effectiveness criteria. If this happens, the Board’s January 2013 report could prove more interesting and influential than before. *Information on this model is taken from “Evidence-Based School Finance Adequacy in Illinois—a Subcommittee Report of the Education Funding Advisory Board (EFAB) Advisory Board Committee” by Michelle Turner Mangan and Ted Purinton, November 18, 2010.

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update Magazine / Spring 2011


By Bert G. Nuehring

Matthew A. Geerdes

partner Crowe Horwath LLP

CPA Crowe Horwath LLP


CLOSELY At the Pertinent GASB Statements: GASB 51 and GASB 54

In 2009, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) issued GASB Statement No. 54 (GASB 54), Fund Balance Reporting and Governmental Fund Type Definitions, which Illinois public school districts must comply with beginning with the June 30, 2011, audit cycle. Another new standard, GASB 51, Accounting and Financial Reporting for Intangible Assets, took effect last year. The two standards will significantly change how districts report intangible assets and fund balances on their financial statements.

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GASB 51 GASB 51 is intended to reduce inconsistencies in the reporting of intangible assets among state and local governments, including school districts, thereby enhancing the comparability of accounting and financial reporting of such assets. Specifically, it requires that all intangible assets not specifically excluded be classified as capital assets in the government-wide statements and enterprise fund statements as applicable. Retroactive Application The provisions of GASB 51 should generally be applied retroactively, which means districts must issue restatements for all periods presented in which the retroactive reporting of intangible assets causes a material

Identifying Intangible Assets An intangible asset is an asset that:

• Can be purchased or licensed • Lacks physical substance • Is nonfinancial in nature • Has an initial useful life extending beyond a single reporting period The most common types of intangible assets held by school districts include internally generated computer software (including websites), licensed software and permanent easements. Internally generated computer software (such as systems for student registration, general ledger, attendance, or grant management) is classified as an intangible asset if it meets the requirements above. Software is “internally generated” if it is:

Useful Life Amortization for intangible assets should be recorded based on useful life. Useful life is determined on an asset-by-asset basis, taking into account relevant contractual and legal provisions along with renewal periods. An intangible asset could, in some cases, have an indefinite useful life if no contractual, legal, regulatory, technological or other factors limit the useful life. Permanent right-of-way easements are an example of intangible assets with an indefinite useful life.

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update Magazine / Spring 2011

effect. The standard also requires disclosures in the footnotes related to any restatement presented. GASB 51 does recognize some exceptions from the retroactive reporting requirement. While reporting is required for all intangible assets acquired in fiscal years ending after June 30, 1980, by school districts classified as Phase 1 or Phase 2 for the purposes of GASB 34, Basic Financial Statements – and Management’s Discussion and Analysis – for State and Local Governments, retroactive reporting of such assets by smaller Phase 3 districts is encouraged but not required. Furthermore, retroactive reporting is permitted, but not required, for internally generated intangible assets and intangible assets with indefinite useful lives at transition that were previously subject to amortization.

• Developed in-house by the district’s personnel, • Developed in-house by a third-party contractor on behalf of the district, or

• Commercially available software that is purchased or licensed by the district and modified. Licensed software, including commercially available computer software like Blackboard that is purchased or licensed by the district and placed into operation without modification, is also considered an intangible asset. Note that districts should report a long-term liability representing the district’s obligation to make annual licensing payments. A permanent easement – the right to use the real property of another without possessing it – is considered a property right in itself in most jurisdictions and an intangible asset under GASB 54. For example, a pathway stretching from district property across a different municipality’s property to the district’s bus yard is a permanent easement that is deemed reportable.

GASB 54 GASB 54 is designed to enhance the usefulness of fund balance information by providing clearer fund balance classifications that can be applied more consistently and clarifying the existing definitions of types of funds. The guidance establishes classifications that form a hierarchy based primarily on the extent to which a public school district is bound to observe constraints imposed upon the use of the resources reported in funds. Districts should update their fund balance policies to reflect the changes in the new standard, although policy changes are not mandated by law.

article / GASB 51, 54

Classification of Fund Balances Under previous standards, fund balances were organized into three categories – reserved, unreserved and designated. GASB 54 replaces those categories with the following classifications:

Nonspendable Fund Balance This includes amounts that are not in a spendable form, such as inventory or prepaid expenses. It also includes amounts that are required to be maintained intact, such as the principal of an endowment fund.

Restricted Fund Balance This includes amounts that can be spent only for the specific purposes stipulated by external providers, such as grant providers or bondholders, as well as, amounts that are restricted constitutionally or through legislation. In other words, these funds are restricted by authorities outside the agency itself, and these restrictions may be changed or lifted only with their consent.

Committed Fund Balance This includes amounts that can be used only for specific purposes that are determined by a formal action of the district’s highest level decision-making authority, usually the Board of Education. These commitments may be changed or lifted, but only by the same formal action that was used to impose the constraint originally.

Assigned Fund Balance This classification applies to amounts that are intended for specific purposes, as expressed by the governing body or authorized official. It applies to the remaining resources in any governmental fund other than the Education Fund. Essentially, these are the resources in a governmental fund that are not restricted or committed but are intended to be used for a defined purpose.

Unassigned Fund Balance This is the residual classification for the Education Fund and includes all amounts not contained in the other classifications. Unassigned amounts are technically available for any purpose. In addition, if another governmental fund has a deficit balance, it will be reported as a negative amount in that fund’s unassigned classification. Positive unassigned amounts are reported only in the Education Fund.

Fund Types GASB 54 provides definitions for different types of district funds. Special revenue funds, for example, are created only to report revenue sources that are restricted or committed to a specific purpose. Illinois Municipal Retirement Funds, Transportation Funds, and Operations and Maintenance Funds remain separately presented special revenue funds because they are funded primarily with property taxes and restricted grants from the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE). Recognizing the importance of the balances in stabilization funds, GASB 54 specifies how these amounts can be reported by treating stabilization arrangements as a specific purpose. Consequently, amounts constrained to stabilization should be reported as restricted or committed fund balances in the Education Fund, provided they meet the other criteria for those classifications. The standard also identifies additional restrictions related to the classification of special revenue fund and clarifies the definitions of Debt Service and Capital Projects Funds. Required Disclosures The new standard imposes several disclosure requirements on school districts. In particular, districts will need to disclose the accounting policies they use to determine the order in which restricted, committed, assigned and unassigned amounts are spent whenever more than one resource is available for a specific purpose. Special Issues for Illinois School Districts Reporting under GASB 54 is complicated by the fact that the prescribed format for the ISBE Annual Financial Report (AFR) form does not mirror GASB 54 requirements. For example, a district could determine that a fund doesn’t qualify as a special revenue fund under GASB 54 and therefore fold it into the Education Fund for reporting purposes. For AFR purposes, however, the district would be required to report it as a separate stand-alone fund. To complete the AFR form, districts will likely need to convert the presentation of their financial statements. Similarly, the state-required budget format does not follow GASB 54 requirements and also needs to be converted. On the other hand, districts generally don’t need to change current internal financial reporting because of GASB 54 — unless the internal reporting follows generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and will be used as the basis for external reporting. The cash, modified cash, and regulatory basis of accounting also will not change due to GASB 54 until required to do so by ISBE. Act Now GASB 51 is already in effect and districts should continue to consider its impact annually during the audit process. GASB 54 will be effective for the upcoming audit cycle, meaning districts should begin now to consider its effects on fund balance presentation, special revenue fund presentation and fund balance policies. Failure to comply could result in an adverse auditor’s opinion, thereby putting funding and borrowing at risk.

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Serving up


The Child Nutrition Reauthorization – Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 was signed into law by President Obama on December 13, 2010, giving the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

authority to establish national nutritional standards for all foods sold to students during the school day, including vending machines and new meal patterns for school breakfast and lunch. Collaborators including Michelle Obama see the law as a step forward in the fight against childhood obesity. Yet, there are still many questions about what the implications will be for school business officials and vendors, including the question of funding – are these requirements realistic and feasible in the current climate of school finance in Illinois? Two experts weigh in on the implications of this new legislation, and how schools can start preparing now for change. 42 |

update Magazine / Spring 2011

Rebekah Weidner


copywriter illinois asbo

Balancing Breakfast ne month after President Obama signed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act [S.3307] into law the USDA published a proposed rule on school nutrition standards with a 90-day comment period in effect until April 13 to voice concerns. The rule-making process is expected to be final by November 2011, with the new meal pattern going into effect for the FY2012 school year. The proposed rule is based on recommended changes from the Institute of Medicine (IOM), commissioned by the USDA and published in October of 2009. These recommendations consider advancements made in nutrition and follow the current Dietary Guidelines for Americans, including standards for menu planning to increase the amount and variety of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. The standards also focus on calorie levels and on reducing saturated fat and sodium in school meals. Changing the nutrition and business of school lunch Sharon Nichols, Illinois School Nutrition Association President and Director of Food Services for Valley View CSD 365U, sees the issue from both sides: school nutrition and school business. From a nutrition standpoint, there are many positives to the new legislation, namely that it sets standards for all food sold and vended during

The greatest change in breakfast foods is the increase in fruits, which doubles from the current requirement. In addition, grains increase by nearly 80 percent over current levels, with a shift to whole grains. For lunch, the greatest change is the increase in fruits and vegetables, an increase of nearly four half-cup servings a week. The following tables compare the types and amounts of foods required under the current and the proposed meal patterns for breakfast and lunch.

Breakfast Current Requirement

Proposed Requirement


½ cup per day

1 cup per day

Grains & Meat/ Meat Alternate

2 grains or 2 meat alternates or 1 of each per day

1.4-2 grains per day plus 1-2 meat/meat alternates per day

Whole Grains


At least half of the grains to be whole grain-rich


1 cup

1 cup, fat content of milk to be 1% or less

Lunch Current Requirement

Proposed Requirement

Fruit & Vegetables

½-1 cup of fruit and vegetables combined per day

¾-1 cup of vegetables plus 1/2-1 cup of fruit per day


No specifications as to type of vegetable

Weekly requirement for dark green and orange vegetables and legumes and limits on starchy vegetables

Meat/ Meat Alternate

1.5 – 3 oz equivalents (daily average over 5-day week)

1.6 - 2.4 oz equivalents (daily average over 5-day week)


1.8 – 3 oz equivalents (daily average over 5-day week)

1.8 – 2.6 oz equivalents (daily average over 5-day week)

Whole Grains


At least half of the grains to be whole grain-rich


1 cup

1 cup, fat content of milk to be 1% or less

the school day. This means that the school lunch programs will no longer have to compete with vending of non-nutritious foods throughout the building, which levels the playing

field a bit. The law is also groundbreaking because it sets nutrition standards for food sold outside of the school meals for all students. Previously, Illinois had standards for

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Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act Some Sections to be Aware Of Section and Title


Practically Speaking

Sec. 101 Improving direct certification

Provides performance bonus in no more than 15 States for “outstanding performance” and “substantial improvement” in direct certification.

Direct certification brings children into system where other fees are also waived, diminishing revenue.

Sec. 202 Fluid Milk

Requires that schools offer a variety of fluid milk consistent with the Dietary Guidelines’ recommendations.

Only flavored & plain skim, and plain 1% milk will be allowed.

Sec. 204. Local wellness policy implementation

Requires USDA to establish regulations for local wellness and to provide technical assistance to States/ schools in consultation with ED & HHS (CDC).

Currently there are no minimum guidelines that must be included. Ten districts could have 10 levels of stringency.

Sec. 208 Nutrition Standards

Requires USDA to establish national nutrition standards for all food sold and served in schools at any time during the school day. Allows exemptions for approved school-sponsored fundraisers.

May mean less funds for extracurricular activities outside district budgets. Does not affect fundraisers outside school day.

Sec. 306 Professional standards for all foods served in schools

Establishes program of required education, training, and certification for all school food service directors and criteria for the selection of state directors.

If you’re planning to hire anyone new, this is something to keep in mind.

Sec. 445 Effective date

Unless otherwise noted in the Act, the provisions are effective October 1, 2010.

Now is the time to start planning for these changes in your district.

USDA guidelines for school meals issued for comment on January 13, 2011 will most likely take effect 2012/2013. Source: Sharon Nichols, Illinois School Nutrition Association

elementary and middle school, but never high school. As a school business official, Nichols also understands there may be challenges ahead in implementing many of the law’s provisions. Funding is, as always, a key concern. One such area of concern is Sec. 205, effective SY beginning July 1, 2011, requiring schools to charge students for paid meals at a price that is on average equal to the difference between free and paid meal federal reimbursement. Schools that currently charge less are required to gradually increase their prices over time (a minimum of 10 cents annually) until they meet the requirement. If a school receives $2.72 for free meals and 26 cents for paid meals, for example, they will be required to charge, on average, at least $2.46 for a paid meal. Currently, many charge 44 |

update Magazine / Spring 2011

much less. Sharon’s district charges anywhere from $1.50 to $2.75, with a blended average meal charge of 63 cents short. She is afraid that the forced price increase could push some kids out of the lunch program.

patterns will likely be enforced. And most likely, the six cents will in no way cover all the changes that will need to be made, costing school districts and/ or parents additional money.

“There is a notion among parents that school meals should be inexpensive” she adds. Parents may elect to drop out and send their children with a lunch that is not as nutritionally complete – say, a bologna sandwich, chips and a juice drink – because they can do it for less.” This would be unfortunate, as school lunch is packed with nutritious foods like fruits and vegetables, whole grains and milk.

Changing the way meals are made Clare Keating works directly with school business officials as the Director of Account Management for Preferred Meal Systems, a supplier of healthy, component meals to public and private school districts and charter schools throughout the United States. As a vendor, she comments, ”We’ve been following this for years and anticipating its arrival, making sure that we are fully prepared for the changes in the law.”

The new law does provide an additional six cents per lunch for schools who are in compliance with final meal pattern regulations under Sec. 201. However, they aren’t expected to receive this money before FY2013, a year after

In anticipation of these initiatives, Preferred Meals has been working on the development of new products, with a team of four full-time chefs. For example, their menus now include whole grain pastas and pizza. Since there

is no difference in taste or look from their traditional counterparts, whole grains are an opportunity to implement the new standards without completely changing the look or feel of the menu. The school food market is just starting to address the new standards; however, meeting the new demands will come with a cost. For example, reformulating products with significantly lower sodium levels will require research and development. In addition, many whole grain items such as hamburger and hot dog buns are not currently mass-produced in whole grain and are priced much higher than traditional products. As the demand increases, hopefully vendors will be able to produce products without significantly raising costs and putting financial strain on already tight school food budgets. And the new standards bring up an even bigger nation-wide challenge: training society’s palettes so that the school meals reflect what’s in the market and served at home. A key example of this is sodium. The proposed rule sets a limit of 740mg for high school lunch, less than the current level in some entrées. To truly succeed, a change needs to be made throughout the food service industry – all the way to McDonalds, where a double cheeseburger alone contains 1150 mg.

Working Together to Meet the Challenge How can school business officials work effectively with vendors to meet the new standards? Here are a few ideas… 1. Stay involved – Make sure whoever is running the Foodservice Program is up to date with the latest implications of the law so they know what to ask for. The Illinois State Board of Education will likely be conducting workshops to offer assistance. 2. Be specific about what you need – If you are working with a contract management company, make sure to clearly communicate what you need under the new specifications. 3. Put nutrition standards in the bid contract – Most schools are required to bid their program every five years. Now is the time to go ahead and start incorporating new specifications into that bid. 4. Keep tabs on the industry – The industry will evolve with the changes, but the USDA and ISBE requires School Food Authorities to know their program and follow all regulations to meet nutrient standards.

as it had previously been challenging to offer low prices when states had differing requirements. Preparing for Change Although many final outcomes of this legislation remain unclear, Nichols and Keating agree that now is the time to get a head start on putting some of the proposed regulations (i.e. meal patterns) into practice, and prepare for others that may be less clear. It would be a wise move to start looking at the budget and making provisions for what’s to come.

What do you think about the new standards? To view the proposed rule and voice your concerns, visit and search “Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act.” Be sure to post comments by April 13 for consideration.

Keating understands that the funding side will prove difficult. For schools with existing contracts with Foodservice Management Companies, the law could pose a problem as the changing regulations may affect contracts. Yet, she hopes the adoption of new national standards by the Secretary of Agriculture will help keep price increases to a minimum,

Let’s take the example of Sec. 203, requiring schools to make free potable water available where meals are served. Note that there is no funding provided and no clear time frame. How can schools start preparing for the change now? • Start surveying – What feeding areas do we have where water is not currently available? Where

might we be required to add water sources? • Evaluate solutions – How can we provide this water? Drinking fountains? Containers of water? Cups? What are acceptable solutions and what will they cost? • Look at your current projects – Are we currently doing any remodeling? Could we include the addition of water fountains into any of those projects? Though no one will know all the details for absolute certain until the comment period is over and the law is finalized, now is the time to start working towards as many of the proposed guidelines as possible; the bulk of them will become law. If schools are prepared then there will only be a few things left to focus when this happens because everything else will already be accomplished. As Nichols put it, “This is a lot to implement at one time, so begin now and spread the work out!” Although there will no doubt be growing pains in making all the required changes, the hope is that in the end schools and vendors alike will adapt and everyone will be better off ... especially students.

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Say "Yes" to Dual Benefits


When you renew with your affiliate ASBO, check the box for ASBO International Membership. With one payment, you can participate in both organizations—doubling the tools, resources, and colleagues you can call on to help you in your everyday responsibilities. Together, we can effectively manage resources to give every child the power of education.

help e h t , f f a t s r e w e f es and i t i l i b i s n o p iceless. s r e p r s g i n i p s i a h e s r r c e b n i m e e With th ASBO m (MN) h g u o r h t n i a g I t ls and expertise thaSBA, White Bear Lake Area Schoo xon Sr., R Peter Willco

46 | update Magazine / Spring 2011

resources on paper: Static sources for education professionals

Making change inevitable and making it happen From seeking serenity to seeking solutions: A change in mindset is the first step

On My List Influencer: The Power To Change Anything By Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan and Al Switzer

Overview: You are an influencer — authors tell readers in this enlightening book about how to influence minds and actions. They draw from experience as innovators in best practices training products and services that have taught more than two million people, their work with more than 300 of the Fortune 500 companies and the stories of key influencers worldwide to create a model of how to make change inevitable in homes, workplaces and beyond.

Everyone has circumstances around them that they’d like to change, whether personal, professional or on a broader scale. Most of these are what Patterson and his co-authors would call "influence challenges:" challenges that require motivating yourself and/or others to bring about that change. It could be anything from getting staff to work more efficiently, to getting a 13-year-old to keep their room clean, to ending the spread of disease in Africa. Where Does Change Begin? The authors contend that change begins with each person adopting one simple idea: "I am an influencer." They argue that the mindset of a popular prayer, asking for the “serenity to accept the things you cannot change, the courage to change the things you can and the wisdom to know the difference” can lead people to fall into a trap. After a few attempts at change without positive results, they surrender, decide that they are not an “influencer” and seek serenity. The Wisdom to Make a Difference What if instead of asking for the “wisdom to know the difference,” we sought out the wisdom to make a

difference? Influencer takes readers on a journey across the globe to see how individuals have brought about changes from reducing the spread of HIV AIDS in Tanzania, to Guinea worm eradication in Africa and Asia, to finally losing weight and keeping it off. By studying the methods of these influencers, readers learn to change the way they change minds through first identifying vital behaviors that need change, then making a plan to bring about that change. Making Change Inevitable The second part of the book gives a practical model for how to change minds and asks each reader to form their own influence strategy. The model calls out six master sources of influence, based around two key questions that motivate behavior: “Can I do what’s required?” and “Will it be worth it?” By addressing each of these questions on a personal, social and structural level, the authors establish a model for change to solve any and every challenge of influence. Part of that equation, is teaming up with opinion leaders, and becoming one yourself. With all of the challenges facing school business officials today, becoming an agent for change, or an “influencer,” could make all the difference in bringing about a bright future for school districts across Illinois... making this book a must read.

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on paper: Static sources for education professionals

“Funding Our Future: Reforming Illinois Tax Policy” Document, Center for Tax and Budget Accountability

Legislative Directory Booklet, Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance Inside: Information on the legislature and state government, along with a current listing of all House and Senate members with pictures and contact information. Find It: In your mailbox in

late March from Illinois ASBO. Practically Speaking:

“If you really care about an issue … you should go talk to your legislator about it. This is where you find the information to do that.” — Cal Jackson Illinois ASBO Legislative liason

Inside: Learn “why Illinois cannot

invest in a better future without tax reform” through an analysis of the state’s long term spending patterns, budget problems and tax policy. Find it: Download the pdf at on the “Budget, Tax and Revenue” page. Practically Speaking: Find helpful charts (for example, Top Income Tax Rates in the Midwest on p. 27) to use in intelligent conversation with your district, Board of Education, and legislative reps.

Inside: A digest of new state laws from 2010 effecting Illinois public schools, including a summary, sponsors, public act number and date effective. Find it: In your mail sometime in February. If you lose your copy, download a new one at under “Government Relations.”

organized by topic (in case you can’t remember the act number) so you can quickly find information to pass on to your staff.

« Don't be afraid to step up to the mic and make your district's issues heard. update Magazine / Spring 2011

Inside: A summary of the Alliance’s action and impact in the previous year, demonstrated by a summary of alliance-supported legislation that passed, Alliance-opposed bills that didn’t pass, Alliance amendments to bills, and more. Find It: IASB distributes this each fall at the Joint Annual Conference. To obtain a copy of last year's overview, you can call Connie at 217.528.9688 ext. 1132. Practically speaking: Take a quick browse to find new legislation to be aware of, and understand how the Alliance is working for you in Springfield to move legislation favorable to schools.

New School Laws (2011) Booklet, Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance

Practically Speaking: This booklet is

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Legislative Session Overview By the Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance

Digest of Bills Passed (2011) Booklet, Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance Inside: Timely information about bills passed to the Governor in the Spring Legislative Session… giving schools a chance to lobby for or against bills that they care about. The information, numbers, and “last action” taken by legislation are listed. Find It: Look for this in your mailbox each Summer. Or, download the latest version at under “Government Relations.” Practically Speaking: These bills will be considered by the governor… so it’s vital that you look at this and contact the Governor’s office about bills that are important to your district.


on screen: dynamic sources for education professionals

Search Illinois General Assembly Inside: Look up a bill, obtain a copy,

Bookmark It Alliance Legislative Reports Watch your inbox for these useful reports on the latest Illinois Legislation! During sessions of the General Assembly and as needed during off-times, learn about major legislative activities and bills relevant to school leaders. You can access an archive of these on the Illinois Association of School Boards’ website at

U.S. Communities New partnerships mean more savings

U.S. Communities recently awarded new contracts to Independent Stationers (over Office Depot) and and Premier, Inc. food service solutions. An Illinois ASBO sponsored entity, they team with suppliers to offer cooperative purchasing to public agencies nationwide. Find it: Visit to learn more. Practically speaking: Make sure

you're getting the best price on office and classroom solutions, food service and more.

check the Senate and House schedule ... then watch the action live! Find it: “Search the [96th] General

Assembly” on the home page. Click “House” or “Senate” to find the Schedule and Audio/Video functions. Practically Speaking: Get information

on a bill, watch the action online or find a committee meeting.

Need More Legislative Resources?

Visit • More on the work of the Alliance; • The latest from the Delegate Advisory Assembly; and • A myriad of other useful legislative resources and links!

Partners in Legislation

Legislative Organizations

Sponsored by Illinois Policy Institute

Serving Illinois Schools Inside: Learn how these

organizations serve districts through their presence in Springfield and stay on the pulse with the latest in Illinois Legislation. Find them: – Large Unit

District Association (LUDA) – Education, Research and Development for Suburban Schools (ED-RED) – Legislative Education Network of Dupage County (LEND) – South Cooperative Organization for Public Education (SCOPE) Practically speaking: Check out their

websites to find who is representing your district ... then keep exploring to find an array of resources and discussion on issues that matter to you most.

Inside: Follows local legislators to see

issues they care about … and what they're doing over the weekend. Find it: Visit to

see the “tweetstream.” Or, follow @tweetillinois. Practically Speaking: Follow groups

like “Illinois House Republicans,” or individuals. Use “find your reps by zip code” to find your local Representatives.

Position Statements By the Illinois ASBO Delegate Advisory Assembly (DAA) Inside: Illinois ASBO’s positions on

legislative issues affecting schools. Find it: Go to Practically speaking: Learn how

Illinois ASBO and the DAA work for you on issues that impact schools.

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the final word Great Ideas from Great Illinois ASBO Members Cheryl M. Crates Chief Financial Officer Community Unit School District 300 What is your professional role with regards to education? As CFO, I ensure the Superintendent and Board have a budget process that ties educational programs to costs and includes program evaluation centering on student achievement to set educational priorities. As a school business official, I keep the Superintendent and Board apprised of district revenues from local, state and federal levels. I stay in touch with Illinois' financial condition, as well as my district.

Cheryl Crates first became interested in School Finance as a teacher studying to become a principal. Her love for math and pursuit of leadership combined and she gained her doctorate in School Finance. Cheryl plans to retire in three years and will teach School Finance part-time. Her goal for the long-term is to be a “good grandma.”

photo by Jim Womack / NIU

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update Magazine / Spring 2011

What will impact School Legislation most significantly in the next 5–10 years? Illinois is in its worst economic crisis in 30 years and even with the income tax rate Increase there is very little new money for schools. The far right believes we have an expenditure problem, when in reality the state has a revenue problem. Lack of state leadership has meant the people of Illinois have not heard the truth about the economic condition. With the fifth largest population, fifth largest economy and 13th highest per capita income, Illinois cannot afford to rank 43rd in spending of core services: education, healthcare, social services and public safety ($9 out of every $10 spent). The main issue of being too reliant on the property tax (which is not the fairest tax) for funding of education has caused major inequities to both the taxpayer and school districts. What is the most important School Legislation topic to address immediately? Legislation that increases revenues. This includes, for example: 1. Tax relief for low and middle income earners. 2. Improving school funding for low and middle income areas, minority and rural areas of the state and not decreasing funding for the affluent. If you could change one thing about the School Legislation process? I want Democrats and Republicans to work together to solve the state’s problems without blaming each other or using it for political gain. Illinois is in crisis and we need to solve the people’s problems with research and solid arguments, not political rhetoric.

sum 2011

Northern Illinois University & Illinois Association of School Business Officials

NEW online cohort forming for May 2011

School Business

Management Cohort This unique academic and practice based program is built upon the Professional Standards for School Business Management as established by the Association of School Business Officials International. Therefore, each class is unique to the field of school business management. Included in the program is a three semester internship overseen by practicing school business officials already serving in Illinois schools. This ensures that every student will exit the program with the breadth and depth of experience that is required to be successful in this growing educational leadership field.

Todd Latham NIU Academic Program Advisor 815.753.1465 -

Also, due to this unique partnership, students enrolled in these programs will automatically become members of Illinois ASBO and receive all of the benefits afforded practicing school business officials in Illinois. Be sure to visit to see what Illinois ASBO has to offer.

Sandi Duda Illinois ASBO Headquarters 815.753.9365 - | 51

Application information







EXPERIENCE Bring a non-member to the Illinois ASBO Exhibit Hall for FREE!

Your guest will enjoy FREE lunch, build connections and network with peers all while exploring more than 180 exciting products featured in the Exhibit Hall. Attendees can even sit in on helpful nearby sessions on Transportation, Food Service, Facilities and Technology.

Non-member Exhibit Hall attendance is free, but registration is required Register online:

52 |

Register by phone: 815.753.9305

update Magazine / Spring 2011

stay connected at WWW.IASBO.ORG

Illinois ASBO UPDATE Spring 2011  
Illinois ASBO UPDATE Spring 2011  

Legislation Issue and Annual Conference Preview