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Dear County and District Chief Business Officials and Charter School Administrators:
2021 Standardized Account Code Structure Software—Budget Release
The 2021 budget version of the Standardized Account Code Structure (SACS) financial reporting software (SACS2021 Budget) is now available on the California Department of Education (CDE) Financial Reporting Software web page at https://www.cde.ca.gov/fg/sf/fr/. This version of the software includes only those components necessary to complete the 2021–22 budget reports. A second release is planned for early July 2021 and will include, in addition to the 2021–22 budget components, the 2020–21 unaudited actual and the 2021–22 interim reporting components of the software.
This year our efforts were primarily focused on required changes, including those required by Governmental Accounting Standards Board Statement 87 (GASB 87). For additional information on the changes made to the software, please refer to the “What’s New” section of the SACS2021 Software User Guide.
Prior year ending balances from 2019–20 unaudited actuals (including funds, assets, debt, and lottery), Gann data, Every Student Succeeds Act Maintenance of Effort, and first and second prior year indirect cost rate information have been preloaded into the budget software, most of which will be used for unaudited actual reporting.
In addition, to the extent possible, data from 2018–19 and 2019–20 Fund 01, Fund 10, Fund 17, and attendance unaudited actual data, as well as the California Basic Educational Data Systems (CBEDS) data, has been preloaded in the software for use in the Criteria and Standards Review form.
The SACS2021 Budget software contains the most current validation tables, dated April 7, 2021.
Charter School Beginning Balances
The prior year ending fund balances from the Charter School Alternative Form have been crosswalked to the equivalent SACS fund and object codes and included with the prior year ending fund balances from the SACS submissions, to ensure consistency of the data. This will only affect charter schools that reported 2019–20 unaudited actuals in the Charter School Alternative Form and that are preparing a 2021–22 budget or 2020–21 unaudited actuals report using the SACS software.
New Financial Reporting Requirements for Leases
The SACS software has been revised to incorporate changes to financial reporting for leases as required by Governmental Accounting Standards Board Statement 87 (GASB 87), effective 2021–22. For a detailed description of the associated software changes, please see the “What’s New” section of the SACS2021 Software User Guide.
Software User Guide and Reporting Calendars
Installing the software with the default settings will automatically copy the SACS2021 Software User Guide and financial reporting calendars to your C:\SACS2021\Calendars and Manuals subdirectory. The user guide is accessible from the software Help menu and also by pressing F1 from within most forms and processes in the software. The user guide has only been updated for the budget components; the unaudited actual and interim reporting components will be updated in the SACS2021ALL Software User Guide.
Preparation for Interim Criteria and Standards
The interim period Criteria and Standards Review form will extract applicable budget period data, if such data are available; otherwise, it will require manual input. To enable extraction of budget period data, the officially exported budget file from the SACS2021 software must be imported (Official import is recommended) into the SACS2021ALL software. Be sure to save an electronic copy of your officially exported budget data file for import into the SACS2021ALL software (the software’s official export default directory is C:\SACS2021\Official). Once the budget data has been imported into the SACS2021ALL software, the SACS2021 software is no longer necessary and can be uninstalled.
Software Bugs and Fixes
As in the past, we will communicate any detected software bugs and their fixes or workarounds to the county office SACS software contacts via email, and we will also post them to the CDE Financial Reporting Software web page. We are very interested in hearing from all LEAs regarding the overall software, forms, and instructions. Comments from charter schools regarding using SACS and/or the Charter School Alternative Form would also be helpful. Send your comments and suggestions using the Change Order Form (CHG) included in the SACS software or by email at email@example.com. The completed CHG form may either be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to us at the address shown at the top of the form. Please be sure to let the appropriate people within your agency know where they can access the software on the CDE website.
For assistance with the SACS software, districts should contact their county office of education, and charter schools should contact their authorizing agency. County offices may contact us by email at email@example.com.
Christine Davis, Administrator
Office of Financial Accountability and Information Services
cc: County and District Superintendents; Charter School Authorizing Agencies