■  What is Internal Auditing?

■  What are internal controls?

■  What occurs during a School Internal Accounts audit?

■  How do I prepare for a School Internal Accounts audit?

■  How long is a typical School Internal Accounts audit?


What is Internal Auditing?

Internal auditing is an independent and objective assurance and consulting activity that is guided by a philosophy of adding value to improve the operations of the organization. It assists an organization in accomplishing its objectives by bringing a systematic and disciplined approach to evaluate and improve the effectiveness of the organization's risk management, control, and governing processes. Professionalism and a commitment to excellence are facilitated by operating within a framework of professional practice established by the Institute of Internal Auditors.

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What are internal controls?

The Internal Control - Integrated Framework Executive Summary states:

"Internal control is broadly defined as a process, effected by an entity's board of directors, management, and other personnel, designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the achievement of objectives in the following categories:

1.    Effectiveness and efficiency of operations. 
2.    Reliability of financial reporting. 
3.    Compliance with applicable laws and regulations."

According to the Institute of Internal Auditors' International Standards for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing (Section 2120) the primary objectives of internal controls are the accomplishment of established objectives and goals for operations or programs by ensuring:

1.     Reliability and integrity of financial and operational information. 
2.     Effectiveness and efficiency of operations.
3.     Safeguarding of assets; and. 
4.     Compliance with laws, regulations, and contracts. 

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What occurs during a School Internal Accounts audit?

Chapter 6.A-1.087 of the Florida Administrative Code for the Department of Education requires schools' internal funds be audited. A normal audit proceeds as follows:

  1. An audit engagement letter is sent to notify the school of the audit.
  2. The auditor performs fieldwork (audit testing) either at the school or in the office.
  3. The auditor discusses issues with school bookkeeper/secretary.
  4. The auditor conducts an exit conference with the principal, bookkeeper/secretary, and other school staff (as necessary) to discuss the findings and issues noted during the audit.
  5. The auditor prepares and sends to the school an audit report in writing, which details official audit findings, if any.
  6. The principal prepares a written response detailing any actions which will be taken to address any findings contained in the audit report.

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How do I prepare for a School Internal Accounts audit?

If you keep your files in reasonable order and run your required year-end reports, you will be in good shape for your audit. By having your records/files in order, the auditor will be able to complete his/her job as quickly as possible and with minimal interruption to the bookkeeper or the school. Click here for a list of records needed for an internal accounts audit.

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How long is a typical School Internal Accounts audit?

The time it takes to perform a School Internal Accounts  audit at a school will vary from school to school. On average though, an elementary school will take between one and two days to audit and a middle school or high school will take three to five days.

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