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C2 Fraud prevention

The Chief Executive and the Department’s Audit Committee approved the Fraud & Corruption, Prevention & Response Plan 2009-2011 in August 2009. This reaffirms the Department’s commitment to ensuring all decision-making processes and practices are ethical, legal and financially sound and are in compliance with the ACT Government’s Integrity Policy.

This Plan and its associated framework describe fraud and corruption control processes for undertaking risk assessments, delivering education and awareness programs, recording and reporting fraud. The processes establish a robust approach to fraud and corruption minimisation and prevention and, ultimately, the promotion of voluntary compliance.

Risks identified in the Plan are addressed through the annual Risk Management and Audit Plan (including risks now managed by the ACT Shared Services Centre) and are reported to the Chief Executive and the Audit Committee. This ensures that the potential for fraud or corruption is mitigated with appropriate controls.

The Director, Governance Branch is the departmental Senior Executive Responsible for Business Integrity Risk. The Director also has governance responsibilities for risk management and audit, reporting to the Chief Executive on matters of fraud and integrity and also reporting to the Audit Committee. Formal reports are provided to the committee twice a year.

The Internal Audit Program for 2009-10 included audits of integrity risks designed to ensure that identified controls were working effectively and efficiently. During the year, audits were conducted on expenditure and procurement practices, funding agreements, receipting and compliance with the Chief Executive’s Financial Instruction for Insurance and Indemnity.

The Department’s fraud and corruption prevention strategy is presented to all probationary teachers and central office staff. The ethics training raises awareness of fraud and is included in induction training sessions. Staff can access the Plan on the Department’s internet and intranet sites. Principals are required to affirm that they have held training sessions with staff by the end of term 2 each year.

The Department, in conjunction with the Australian Education Union, has developed the Teachers’ Code of Professional Practice, which incorporates guidelines and case examples of a wide range of issues related to teacher conduct and principles of ethical public service. A copy is provided to all new teachers, including casual teachers, upon commencement. Copies are provided to schools on request and are available on the Department’s website.

The Department has a comprehensive information management process to ensure all allegations and instances of fraud are captured and recorded, in accordance with the ACT Integrity Policy.

The development of an investigation database has provided the Department with the capacity to capture, analyse and report on a range of investigations relating to fraud, corruption and instances of employee misconduct.

The information is monitored and reviewed as part of the annual risk assessment process to assist in targeting areas of concern.

There were no reported incidents of fraud in the 2009-10 financial year. During the year, two incidents of potential fraud were reported but initial investigations found neither constituted fraud. Initial review of the material found, in one instance, the need for more appropriate documentation of telephone records.

For more information contact:
Governance Branch
Telephone: (02)6205 7661

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