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Financial Transparency and Reporting Resources

Building State Capacity & Productivity Center partner Edunomics Lab has received Department of Education funding to develop products, resources, and tools to help guide and support SEAs and LEAs in the efforts on meeting the financial requirements in ESSA.

The materials below have been developed with a growing group of states now including 38 members working on reaching their own financial transparency and productivity goals. In this work with SEAs, we have found that school-level per-pupil expenditure data availability and access at the state-agency level varies widely from state to state, and even the most robust data systems need adjustments to meet the requirement in ESSA or even better go beyond to inform system improvements.

Watch Data Inventory Intro

View the Data Inventory Report

Learn more: contact Katie Hagan at

Four Approaches to Assigning Costs

Getting Started

The following resources have been develop to assist SEAs in their individual efforts to increase financial transparency.


School Level Finance Survey: Converter Tool

The Edunomics Lab, in partnership with the BSCP Center, developed an excel tool that enables users to preview school level expenditure information in a format that satisfies the ESSA financial transparency requirement. The survey requires users to paste in data from the NCES School Level Finance Survey (SLFS), the School District Finance Survey (F-33), and annual enrollment by school. Once data is entered, an analysis page is populated that allows users to filter by LEA and by school to see expenditures by location (school or central) and source of revenue. If you have any questions about the tool, or would like more information, please email (Note: when you open the tool, be sure to select 'Enable Macros' and read the introduction in its entirety).


Use the School Level Finance Survey (SLFS) Converter Tool Guide to provide additional information on the use and general tool navigation of the SLFS converter tool.

Click image to view tool

Webinar: Financial Transparency 101

Financial Transparency Requirement in the Every Student Succeeds Act

Marguerite Roza, Director of Edunomics Lab and BSCP Center partner, outlines the ways in which states might inventory existing financial data and shares potential action steps that states may take to prepare for the ESSA financial transparency requirement.

Videos: Equity & Financial Transparency

Watch Per-Pupil Expenditure: Data and Advocacy Groups

Per-Pupil Expenditure Data and Advocacy Groups: Sharonne Navas of the Equity in Education Coalition in explains why per pupil expenditure data will be an important tool for the advocacy community.

Watch Per-Pupil Expenditures: Technical Challenges & Historical Perspective

Per-Pupil Expenditures: Technical Challenges & Historical Perspective: Sheara Krvaric of the Federal Education Group explains the big picture equity, and provides examples of prior Department of Education accounting requirements.

Watch Equity in Financial Transparency: A State Perspective

Equity in Financial Transparency: A State Perspective: Donna Nester from the MS Department of Education and David Blowman from the DE Department of Education share their thoughts from a state perspective on the importance of communications and how stakeholders will perceive the financial transparency.

Watch Using Student-Based Allocation to Improve Equity

Using Student-Based Allocation to Improve Equity: Weston Young from Indianapolis Public Schools explains how his district is using SBA to facilitate more equitable distribution of resources among schools.

The BSCP Center is funded by a cooperative agreement (#S283B120042) between the U.S. Department of Education and Edvance Research, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Westat. The findings and opinions expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the policies of the U.S. Department of Education.

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