Questions to Ask your CFO/Superintendent

Relationships
What led you to work in education/at this school?
How does your role function in a school and what is your relationship with the superintendent? Are you proactive or reactive?
What are the school stakeholders' roles on setting the budget? (board members, parents, faculty)
How do you think you are seen by teachers (in terms of making finance decisions)? Staff? Principals?
What’s the most difficult part of your job?
Is there a Board relationship to school finance? If so, what is it?
What do you wish principals/teachers understood about your budgetary role?

Structure
How do you structure a teacher package?
Can you walk me through a budget cycle, including review? (Tuition, Teacher salary, Supplies, overseas ordering etc)
How is the budget structured?
What parts of the budget are shared with whom? Who decides?
How are changes in the budget made (restructuring)?

Planning
Where does the money come from (Do we have other investments)?
What specific measures do you take to buffer the effects of fluctuating student enrollment? Exchange rate?
How do you plan for emergency situations? (typhoon, earthquakes, long-term school closure, etc)
How is the budget connected to the school's strategic plan?
Is there any training given to those doing purchasing/sourcing? (policy for spending by faculty...)

What are host country constraints relating to budgeting?
How are major projects planned for and financed (expanding/building new school facilities)?

Decision-making
What’s the biggest challenge you face?
What is done with excess funds?
What principles guide your budget setting process?
Who is responsible for the decisions concerning the budget? (hierarchy)
How are decisions made- what is the process?
How do you decide which resource allocations are a priority in the school?


Feeling Brave
What issues do you see with transparency? (perspectives on confidentiality/openness)
What are issues surrounding expat vs. local hire packages?