2022 Registration Now Open!

Note:  For 2022, the first and last session of the academy will be in person at our Fairfield, CA location, the rest of the classes will be 100% on-line. In person sessions may also be attended on-line if student is located in Southern California. The program features live on-line instruction as well a few select self-paced classes.

Class Schedule for 2022 (8am to 3pm)

  • January 21, 22
  • February 18, 19
  • March 25, 26
  • April 22, 23
  • May 20, 21
  • June 17, 18
  • September 23, 24
  • October 21, 22

Now more than ever, there is a great need in the business office for well trained staff to be able to support teaching and learning.  The validity and accuracy of the district’s financial reports and projections are dependent upon the skill of school business employees managing complex financial systems and data.  These school business professionals must be well trained and understand the theories, methodology and nuisances of California school finance and accounting in order to succeed.

Comprehensive Curriculum

This program emphasizes specific and pragmatic skills school fiscal leaders need to know to be able to thrive as a school business professional.   The content of this academy is presented in an in-line lecture format, relying upon class discussion, small group projects, and out-of-class assignments/practical application.  There all also some self-passed courses that will be assigned as part of the program.  All participants are required to take monthly assessments and pass a comprehensive final exam in order to qualify for the state of California approved Director of Fiscal Services certificate.


The TSS Director of Fiscal Serviced Certificate Program has been created as a comprehensive program designed to produce new or improve the existing skills of experienced or aspiring directors of fiscal services and to enhance the knowledge and skill-set of other school business personnel.  The class consists of a broad base of education and training that occurs both in the classroom setting and by practical application. The course will provide an opportunity for participants to expand their skill-sets in a challenging yet encouraging environment.  Specialized assignments and class projects are done individually and as part of small teams.  Participants who successfully complete the course will be issued an TSS Director of Fiscal Services Certificate.


  1. Attendance and Participation – Participants are expected to attend and contribute in all sessions and must attend all classes in order to receive the TSS Director of Fiscal Services Certificate.   If an emergency arises, one session may be made-up by writing and an academic paper on the missed classes’ subject matter with pre-approved by the program’s director.
  1. Group Projects – There will be various in class group projects that students will participate in. During these group projects students may be asked to act in various roles such as facilitator, scribe, group leader, etc.
  2. Presentation – Participants are required to present one 20-minute PowerPoint presentation on a topic related to school business.
  3. Readings – Various readings will be assigned during the academy.   Students will analyze readings and participate in group discussions or writing assignments  to apply concepts to real world situations.
  4. Practicum-Participants will select an appropriate practicum which will be due by the end of the course.  The practicum can be a variety of activities, including a needed District project or a specific interview with experienced CBO, Director of Fiscal Service, School Accountant, etc.  The practicum topic/project must be agreed to by the coordinator.
  5. Assessments and Final Exam – Monthly assessments will be given to assess progress and students are required to pass a final exam before earning the Director of Fiscal Services Certificate.
  6. Other – Various but limited written or other assignments.


The Director of this program is TSS Executive Vice President Dr. Joseph Pandolfo who brings over 30 years of educational industry experience and who moderates all sessions to ensure the continuity of the curriculum.  Presenters for the program are amongst the highest caliber professionals in the state, and include current and retired CBOs, FCMAT intervention specialists, ACSA and CASBO members, superintendents and other administrators.

Remaining Schedule for 2021

October 15, 16
November 5, 6

Course Curriculum

Introduction to School Business
DFS: Introduction to School Business 00:00:00
DFS: SACS Report Activity 10, 00:00
Local Control Funding Formula
DFS: LCFF 00:00:00
DFS Month 1 Assessment Unlimited
Financial Accounting
DFS Financial Accounting 00:00:00
Governmental Accounting for School Districts Quiz 2 weeks
Financial Management Software
DFS Financial Management Software 00:00:00
Year End Close
DFS Year End Close 00:00:00
Balance Sheet Accounts
DFS Balance Sheet Accounts 00:00:00
DFS Balance Sheet Exercise 300, 00:00
Balance Sheet Quiz Unlimited
Budget Development and Monitoring
DFS Budget Developing and Monitoring 00:00:00
DFS: Making Budgets Work 00:00:00
Budget Quiz Unlimited
Internal Auditing and Controls
Internal Auditing and Controls 00:00:00
Internal Controls and Internal Auditing Quiz Unlimited
Managing the External Audit
DFS External Audit 00:00:00
External Audits Quiz Unlimited
Enrollment and Average Daily Attendance
DFS: Pupil Attendance Accounting 00:00:00
Attendance Exercise 90, 00:00
Attendance Quiz Unlimited
Managing District Technology
DFS: Managing District Technology 00:00:00
Special Education Funding
Overview of Special Education 00:00:00
LCAP and C&I
Working with the Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment + Accountability Department Powerpoint 00:00:00
Working with the Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment + Accountability Department PDF 00:00:00
Working with the CIAA Department Quiz Unlimited
Student Body Accounts
Management of Student Body Funds PDF 00:00:00
Associated Student Body Quiz Unlimited
County Office of Education: Role and Responsibilities
Fiscal Relationship with COE 00:00:00
Debt Management
Debt Management 00:00:00
Debt Quiz Unlimited
Managing Categorical Programs
DFS: LCAP and Categorical Tracking 00:00:00
Categorical Programs 00:00:00
Child Nutrition
DFS Child Nutrition 00:00:00
Nutrition Fiscal Academy Quiz Unlimited
Public Speaking and Board Presentations
Presentation Topic (PowerPoint) 2700, 00:00
Effective Public Speaking 00:00:00
Practicum/Project DFS 210, 00:00
Purchasing (separate self-paced unit)
Effective Writing and Communication
Charter Schools Oversight
Charter School Presentation 00:00:00
Charter School Quiz Unlimited
Collective Bargaining and Negotiations
School Maintenance and Construction
Facilities Presentation 00:00:00
FIT Worksheet Group 1 00:00:00
FIT Worksheet Group 2 00:00:00
FIT Workshop Group 3 00:00:00
FIT Worksheet Group 4 00:00:00
CDE Facilities and Learning 00:00:00
5-Year DM Plan Exercise 00:00:00
2019 Coding Def Maint 00:00:00
Human Resources
Human Resources for Business Leaders Powerpoint 00:00:00
Human Resources Lesson Plan 00:00:00
Human Resource Handouts 00:00:00
FRISK Template 00:00:00
Insurance and Joint Powers Authorities
Overview of Insurance and Self Insurance Programs Powerpoint 00:00:00
Risk Management Quiz Unlimited

Course Reviews


9 ratings
  • 5 stars9
  • 4 stars0
  • 3 stars0
  • 2 stars0
  • 1 stars0
  1. Very Useful


    I really enjoyed the DFS class. I learned a great deal from my time there. I really enjoyed how collaborative the class was, and how we were able to have group discussions based on our specific situations in our jobs. Being able to tie the content of the class directly to my job allowed me to have a greater understanding of the information being presented.

  2. Wonderful Experience


    I have to say that the entire experience was something I really grew from. Whether it was venturing outside my comfort zone, or striving to learn new material, I feel like the Director of Fiscal Services Academy challenged me to become a better school business employee. The material was well put together and has allowed me to better understand my current position as a fiscal services technician and to endeavor to learn even more. I am very thankful I was able to participate in this program and gained a new support system composed of my fellow classmates. Overall, it was a wonderful experience and I recommend this course to anyone wanting to further their knowledge of school business.

    Daniell Boettner
  3. Awesome Course!


    The Director of Fiscal Services course was awesome! The instructor definitely knew his course materials, and covered each concept thoroughly. He was able to teach and engage with everyone who attended the six month course. The course was organized, interactive, and empowering. It provided the necessary training, skills and resources necessary to feel confident and successful.

    Thank you so much for your enthusiasm, dedication to ensure our success. So appreciated!

    Marie White
  4. A Wealth of Information


    Being new to School Finance, the Director of Fiscal Services course was very beneficial to me and even if you are already in School Finance and are looking to advance your career, I would highly recommend taking this course. The instructor was amazing and visiting instructors for the various subjects covered were invaluable as they brought so much depth and wealth of information. The course was organized, interactive and you had opportunities to collaborate with your fellow classmates. I am grateful that I was able to participate in the program and build a networking system with my fellow classmates. I highly recommend it.

    Harvey Olsingch
  5. An Academy for Everyone


    I thoroughly enjoyed the Director of Fiscal Services Academy. My professional growth was more than I could have asked for or expected when I signed up. I learned so much about a variety of topics that have helped me in every aspect of my position in School Business. These courses are for everyone – from the beginner to the experienced school business professional. You will walk away with such an incredible, broader depth of knowledge that is practical in school business. The instructor was amazing, challenging and well prepared. The materials and presenters were always on point and the class discussions and camaraderie that was built during the academy was priceless. I absolutely recommend this to anyone especially if you aren’t sure and are on the fence – do it you won’t regret it!

    Marie Lemos
  6. Highly Recommended


    The Director of Fiscal Services course was great. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to broaden their horizons in the school business world. The way the class was put together was perfect. It included a combination of lecture, discussion, and activities. It was also a wonderful place to network with fellow school business professionals. I give it an A+ rating. It helped me grow professionally.

    Christina Arend
  7. Prepared Me Well


    The class really helped prepare me to feel confident to move to the next level and I truly appreciate everything the class had to offer.

    Chris Perry, CBO Kelseyville USD
  8. Highly Knowledgeable Presenters


    I highly recommend this class for anyone looking to expand their knowledge of School Business. The course and materials were well organized, and the content was very informative. The instructor and the guest presenters were highly knowledgeable in their fields, and provided in-depth insight into the various aspects of School Business.

    Renee Loeza
  9. Great Professional Development


    The DFS program covered a wide range of topics many of which were presented by experts in the industry. Participants in the class are working professionals who share their experience and offer unique insight to topics presented. The exposure I gained to industry experts and my peers as well as the relationships I have been fortunate enough to build have been an important component to my professional development.

    Felicia Koha, CPA

Contact Info

Northern California: 4751 Mangels Blvd. Fairfield, CA 94534

(866) 923-6393
(707) 422-6393
(707) 422-6494 (fax)

About TSS

© Copyright 2020 Total School Solution. All rights reserved.