Strategic Plan - Finance



Ensuring That Every Student Has An Opportunity To Succeed

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Our commitment to fiscal responsibility and our low central administrative costs provide the Cobb taxpayer the best return on investment anywhere in the country. Cobb’s financial decisions prioritize students, staff, and have earned the District a national reputation for excellence.

johnson.jpgBrad Johnson
Chief Financial Officer


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Cobb continues to use fewer dollars per student than most of its District peers (by thousands of dollars) and accomplishes more academically with those fewer dollars. When last calculated and for the fourth consecutive year, the Georgia Department of Education awarded the Cobb County School District 3.5 stars for financial efficiency when the The District’s rating is based on Cobb’s 3-year average CCRPI score of 81 and the state percentile rank of the 3-year average of per-pupil expenditures (PPE).

Outstanding Credit Rating

The Cobb County School District has repeatedly earned a Triple A Credit Rating, the highest credit rating available for corporate or government entities. The District also a MIG-1 (Municipal Investment Group) Short Term Credit Rating, which is the highest short term credit rating. This designation denotes superior credit quality and is a reflection of superior school district financial operations. Excellent protection is afforded by established cash flows, highly reliable liquidity support, or demonstrated broad-based access to the market for refinancing.

No Millage Increase

Thanks to the fiscal responsibility and budgeting, the school district’s debt service millage rate was eliminated in 2007 resulting in no long-term debt. Additionally, the General fund millage rate has not increased in almost 20 years.

Financial Planning and Analysis

This department is responsible for developing the annual school district budget, which totals more than $1.4 billion, preparation of financial projects, and analysis of school district programs. This includes local school budgets and the general district budget.

Advantage of Efficiency

Thanks to Cobb’s low central administrative costs, Superintendent Chris Ragsdale is able to prioritize staff raises year after year. The District’s sensible budgeting and financial management coupled with some of the lowest administrative costs in metro Atlanta and the entire state have enabled Cobb to keep taxes low and return-on-investment high. 

Budget Presentations

To better help the community, staff members, parents, and Board understand where every dollar is going to support students, the District breaks down the budget in several reports and provides access to video of budget presentations as well as the ability to review budgets from the past decade.


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The Cobb Schools Accounting Department is responsible for the district’s accounting, financial reporting, and coordination of the annual financial audit.

Annual District Financial Audit

School District financial records are independently audited annually to ensure proper use of taxpayer funding and resulting in clean audits on a consistent basis.

Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR)

The Cobb County School District has repeatedly earned financial reporting awards from professional accounting organizations in the United States and internationally. 


Every year, there is a performance audit or review of how educational sales tax dollars from Ed-SPLOST are spent. The primary objective of a performance audit is to determine that the sales tax dollars are being disbursed efficiently and economically and that the district is obtaining the maximum benefit possible from the tax dollars collected.

Principal and Assistant Principal Training

Before they even step into the role as principals, the Cobb Schools Financial Department provides training to aspiring principals on how to manage school resources. There is additional training for new principals and existing principals.

After School Program (ASP) Training

Staff members involved in the financial administration of After School Programs can access training from the Financial Services Department.

Local School Bookkeeper Training

New bookkeepers and those filling in for bookkeepers also can access training from the Financial Services Department.

Payroll Training

To ensure that staff members are compensated for their service to students, payroll staff members must go through training provided by Financial Services.


Cobb Schools Finance University (CSFU)