NSW Education Act 1990, Section 83 audits
An Assurance case study
The NSW Government provides more than $1.4 billion annually to non-government schools in accordance with the NSW Education Act 1990 (the Act). To receive funding, Sections 83C-L of the Act requires that non-government schools do not operate for profit.
Compliance by non-government schools with the requirements of the Act is overseen by the Non-Government Schools Not-For-Profit Advisory Committee. The Committee provides advice to the Minister for Education on the compliance of schools and their proprietors with the not-for-profit requirements.
To assist schools (and their proprietors) in understanding their obligations under the Act, the Minister has released the Not-For-Profit Guidelines for Non-Government Schools. The Guidelines provide examples of documentary evidence that may be used to help demonstrate compliance with the Act, and address transactions commonly carried out by proprietors/schools.
The Act provides the Minister with the authority to audit schools at any time. As a leader in the provision of assurance services, OCM were engaged to assist the Department, the Committee and ultimately the Minister in determining the compliance of non-government schools with the not-for-profit requirements of the Act.
Our role involves drawing on our extensive experience in assisting government organisations to examine the records of organisations receiving government funding to:
- Developing a review program, that addresses the governance and control processes in place at schools to allow them to maintain and demonstrate compliance with the Act.
- For each school visited, reporting findings of fact against the areas outlined in the review program including reporting specific transactions or activities that do not appear to align to the not-for-profit requirements.
- Where required, conducted further detailed investigations of schools nominated by the Department and provide a detailed report outlining the findings of those investigations.
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