Monday, August 24, 2009

Adult Basic Education (ABE) Audit Report finds serious violations

The mission of the Adult Basic Education Department (ABE) is "to ensure that all adults in Dallas have the opportunity to develop the academic skills necessary to function effectively."

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) awarded $3,672,329 to Dallas ISD for the School Year 2008-2009 for Adult Basic Education programs.

The internal audit of the Adult Basic Education Department (dated August 21, 2009) includes the following observations:
  • During the audit, it was brought to our attention by various ABE employees that the ABE Manager was in violation of the district payroll policy, grant fund accounting and federal regulatory requirements.
  • The ABE Department does not have sound management practices and adequate procedures for administering federal funds in a manner consistent with rules and regulations within the grant application.
  • There is a lack of proper budget management procedures and monitoring of employee hiring practice.
  • The ABE Department does not have adequate internal controls established to reduce the risk of funds mismanagement or to prevent fraud.
  • The management style of employee intimidation, harassment, and retaliation practiced by the current ABE Manager has negatively affected the control environment and control activities set forth by the policy guidelines of OMB Circular 87-A.
  • The auditor was obstructed from communicating with employees about various ABE operational procedures.
The audit report sets deadlines for various corrective actions to be taken.

These appear to be serious problems that apparently have existed for some time and clearly must be corrected.