Under the Parliamentary Committees Act 2003, the Committee is responsible for conducting follow up inquiries on selected audits conducted by the Victorian Auditor-General.
Follow up inquiries look at the progress that has been made implementing audit recommendations, identify any issues with implementation and investigate new issues that may have arisen since the report was tabled. Follow up inquiries also allow the Committee to make recommendations that will improve specific areas of public administration and accountability.
The Auditor-General made seven recommendations.
The Auditor-General recommended that the Department of Education and Training:
- complete the delivery of funding, capability, accountability and portfolio efficiency reforms currently underway, as detailed in Appendix
- clarify governance arrangements by specifying the asset planning and management roles and responsibilities of the Department of Education and Training, school councils and principals, their functions and the performance measures they will be held accountable for, and hold them accountable (see Section 2.2.2)
- establish a monitoring and evaluation framework for the asset strategy based on a complete set of performance measures that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely, that inform the goal of the asset strategies, and that are routinely monitored and reported on (see Section 2.3.1)
- test the accuracy of its provision planning forecasting over short-, medium- and long-term projections to understand its reliability over time (see Section 3.2.1)
- establish guidelines to inform its decisions for managing changing enrolments in established areas—considering school locations, purchasing of land ahead of when it is required, access issues for students, and size of school land (see Section 3.2.2
- work with local councils and other partners, particularly in growth areas, to strategically plan and design multi-use, shared and co-located facilities before new schools are funded through state budgets (see Section 3.4)
- develop an investment strategy for government school assets to optimise maintenance over the entire life of assets, considering the appropriate mix of allocations for proactive and reactive maintenance, and the implications of current maintenance funding on the life cycle of school assets (see Section 4.5).