New Rochelle Fiscal Stress Test Score Is Second Worst in Westchester

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New Rochelle Fiscal Stress Test Score Is Second Worst in Westchester

February 03, 2017 - 05:17
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NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- The City School District of New Rochelle continues to struggle with the New York State Comptroller’s Fiscal Stress Test. Since its inception in 2013, the New Rochelle School System has consistently scored among the worst in New York.

Bedford Central School District was the worst district in Westchester with a score of 60.00%, New Rochelle was the second worst with a score of 28.30%. No other school district’s in Westchester County made the OSC’s Fiscal Stress List.

This year’s scores are based on the evaluation of 671 of New York’s 728 school districts that have fiscal years ending on June 30, 2016.

Statewide, the district Ranked 629th or the 42nd worst score in New York State.

This is the fourth year DiNapoli’s office has assessed and scored the financial stability of school districts. The latest round of scoring designated two school districts in “significant fiscal stress,” nine in “moderate fiscal stress” and the remaining 48 as “susceptible to fiscal stress.”

Overall there are 59 School Districts in Fiscal Stress, a decrease from 82 districts that were listed in stress last year and 90 the year prior.

“Fiscal stress in many school districts has declined, especially for those in the most severe condition,” said DiNapoli. “School officials should be commended for working to keep their districts out of financial harm, but should be careful not to amass excessive levels of fund balance in order to do so.”

The Fiscal Stress Test relies on  financial indicators that include year-end fund balance, short-term borrowing and patterns of operating deficits, The monitoring system creates an overall fiscal stress score which classifies whether a district is in “significant fiscal stress,” in “moderate fiscal stress,” is “susceptible to fiscal stress,” or has “no designation.”

The two school districts that were classified in “significant stress” were: Hempstead (Nassau) and Wyandanch (Suffolk).

The nine districts considered in “moderate fiscal stress” were Amityville (Suffolk), Bedford (Westchester), Clifton-Fine (St. Lawrence), Cortland (Cortland), East Aurora (Erie), East Ramapo (Rockland), Eldred (Sullivan), Hudson Falls (Washington) and Utica (Oneida).

According to a report released by DiNapoli today in conjunction with the fiscal stress scores, school districts found to be in fiscal stress are more likely to have a high level of poverty and low graduation rates.

Approximately 74 percent of school districts statewide were not in a fiscal stress category in any of the four years; and only 15 districts were found to have experienced stress in all four years of scoring.

The scores are based on financial information submitted as part of each district’s ST-3 financial report filed with the State Education Department as of Dec. 31, 2016. 

Today’s announcement does not include scores for the dependent school districts in the “Big Four” cities of Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers. Information for these districts will be incorporated into the scoring for their respective cities later this year. The monitoring system does not score New York City.

For a list of school districts in fiscal stress, visit here.

For the complete list of school district fiscal stress scores, visit here

For a copy of the fiscal stress report, visit here.

For access to state and local government spending, public authority financial data and information on 50,000 state contracts, visit Open Book New York. The website was created by DiNapoli to promote openness in government and provide taxpayers with better access to the financial workings of government.

  • Significant Stress: Greater than or equal to 65% of total points
  • Moderate Stress: Greater than or equal to 45% of total points
  • Susceptible to Fiscal Stress: Greater than or equal to 25% of total points

New Rochelle scored 28.3%