Risk for Schools offers additional workshops for schools to increase effectiveness, including Policies and Compliance and Effective Decision Making. These issues are often identified in Risk Management Workshops.
Examining Policies and Compliance
Are your school policies and controls effective? Could your school experience fraud – and would you have the proper tools in place to deal with it?
Policies and procedures are critical elements in managing risk; however, in schools, guidelines and documents are rarely up-to-date. In addition, appropriate documents are often not distributed or explained to staff and other stakeholders (such as parents).
Compliance programs are often limited due to tight resources with undue reliance on the external auditors to find fraud. Therefore, the risk of fraud should be a major concern for your school Board and Leadership Team.
We have implemented policy frameworks and compliance programs at a number of schools in South Australia. We can conduct workshops with your school Leadership Team or Board and give them tools to assess the effectiveness of policy frameworks and compliance programs and determine your fraud risk. Typically this process can be completed in less than one term.
Our approach includes:
- Reviewing your existing policy framework
- Reviewing your approach to dissemination of policies
- Conducting a fraud risk assessment
- Establishing a compliance program for key financial policies
- Identifying key controls
- Conducting control testing
- Preparing a policy and compliance report for discussion with management
- Preparing a final report to present to your School Board.
Effective Decision Making in Schools
Decisions need to be made regularly in the school sector, primarily by the School Leadership Team for key operational decisions and by the Board for key strategic decisions.
The effectiveness of decision-making depends on a number of factors, including:
- The size and composition of your school Leadership Team or Board
- The capacity of your Principal or Board Chair to guide decisions.
We conduct workshops with school Leadership Teams or Boards in a practical and engaging way, giving them the tools to make effective decisions. Typically this process can be completed in one term.
Our approach includes:
- Conducting a workshop with your School Leadership Team, introducing the review and using voting technology to collect feedback from participants on a number of statements in relation to the operation, roles and responsibilities of School Leadership Team members
- Conducting a subsequent workshop with your School Leadership Team to provide feedback on the findings of the first workshop and identify individuals’ opportunities to delegate tasks and accommodate more responsibilities. This includes a “plate exercise” to determine what is currently on the plate of each individual and what can be taken off
- Reviewing your school’s current approach to decision making
- Making recommendations to streamline and improve the effectiveness of the decision making process
- Attending School Leadership Team meetings to observe the decision making process and reviewing the progress of implementation of recommended improvements
- Discussing findings with your Principal and/or Board Chair
- Finalising our report to the Board.