At three conferences that we attended this past month, a recurring topic of discussion was how school districts can create greater financial transparency to avoid fraud with school generated funds. With the numerous activities such as field trips and fundraisers happening throughout the year the misappropriation of funds can add up quickly – in some cases costing parents, students and schools over 50k a year. Certain fraud techniques can even persist for years undetected.
Fraud occurs funds are misreported or concealed. When there are gaps in financial transparency, transactions that use cash typically become the most susceptible to fraud. However what became alarming to delegates of the conferences that we attended this month was that cheques could be similarly compromised.