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CSBA co-sponsored legislation spotlights excessive reporting requirements


A supporting brief from the association illustrates how schools are drowning in documentation

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (June 13, 2024) – School districts and county offices of education (COEs) throughout California face an ever-growing list of mandated state and federal reports, data submissions and planning documents. Although individual reports may not present an undue burden, the cumulative impact draws resources away from critical tasks and responsibilities, especially in smaller districts and COEs.

The California School Boards Association (CSBA) and the California Association of School Business Officials (CASBO) are co-sponsoring Senate Bill 1315 (Archuleta, D-Pico Rivera) to require that the California Department of Education document and report to the Legislature the number of state and federally mandated reports districts and COEs must submit. The goal is to identify where information could be consolidated, and which reports could be eliminated — helping schools to free up more time and resources to provide for the needs of California’s students.

SB 1315 passed out of the Assembly Education Committee June 12 on consent and will now head to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

In support of this bill, CSBA has released a new brief, “Drowning in Documentation,” which provides just a sampling of the plethora of reports districts and COEs must submit.

“This is a document that education leaders can present to their legislators and community to show them how much time they spend filling out reports that don’t always have a clear connection to student achievement or operational effectiveness,” said CSBA President Albert Gonzalez. “Accountability is important, but we’ve found that the sheer number of required reports reduces transparency by obscuring potentially useful data under a mountain of redundant and difficult-to-decipher reports. In addition, the reporting requirements can detract from the actual work of supporting students by limiting the time and resources available to spend on meeting local needs.”

There is an assumption that each report helps inform the state about the status and progress of its public education system; however, this is unclear. Some reports may be obsolete or duplicative, while some may even go unreviewed. In addition to freeing up education personnel to work directly on supporting students, SB 1315 will also help state lawmakers be better informed about what reports are most helpful to policy development while dispensing with others that have no real benefit.

“Instructional leaders enter the teaching profession to improve the lives of children, not to be bogged down by endless compliance reports,” said CASBO President Eric Dill, whose organization represents more than 30,000 financial and business operations staff in California’s local educational agencies. “The proliferation of reporting requirements hampers efficiency, especially when districts are already struggling to fill essential support positions.”

“Yes, SB 1315 is a bill calling for a report on reports, but the reality is that there is no complete list anywhere of all the reports that districts and county offices of education need to fill out,” Gonzalez said. “We can’t reduce duplicative work if we don’t know where we’re starting from.”

Download CSBA’s “Drowning in Documentation” brief at


CSBA is a nonprofit association representing nearly 1,000 PreK-12 school districts
and county offices of education throughout California.