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Internal Audit


We provide an independent, objective assurance and consulting activity designed to add value and improve the effectiveness of your risk management, internal control and governance arrangements. We are a team of professional public sector internal auditors with extensive experience in auditing schools.

Included in the service

Service for Academies (Annual SLA) 

We will provide a programme of work of up to 5 days, with 1 further day for planning and reporting, in accordance with the Academies Financial Handbook and ‘Internal scrutiny in academy trusts’ guidance (ESFA). This will provide independent assurance to the governing body over the suitability of, and compliance with, its financial systems and operational controls, and that risks are being adequately identified and managed.

Our work may include reviews of controls over: Purchasing, Major contracts; Borrowing; Payroll, Income controls (including recording of grants); Bank payments and receipts; Governance; Risk management arrangements. Our audit reporting will assist with the requirements under the Academies Financial Handbook to:

  • provide internal scrutiny reports to audit committee
  • complete the annual summary report of internal scrutiny to ESFA

Premium Service for Maintained Schools and Academies

We can provide additional services tailored to the specific requirements of your school, including:

  • providing IT audit reviews including acquisitions, disposals, data security and access control, IT governance
  • provision of advice on the school’s arrangements for minimising the risk of fraud, bribery and corruption, including whistleblowing
  • proactive work to identify potential areas of fraudulent activity, including data analysis, and/or investigations of allegations of fraud, bribery and corruption by qualified counter-fraud officers
  • helping to ensure that conditions of grant funding are met and systems supporting grant returns are effective
  • audit review for major contracts
  • assistance with developing the financial management and governance self-assessment    return to ESFA (for new academy trusts or constituent academies joining a MAT)
  • assistance with the Academy’s annual assessment of governance and preparation of the annual governance statement (existing Academies)  

Benefits to your school

  • independent review and assurance to improve the effectiveness of risk management, control and governance processes
  • assistance to ensure compliance with statutory requirements
  • assistance with detailed audit reviews tailored to your specific needs, as part of our premium service
  • access to advice and assistance from a team of experienced auditors including access to a    sharing of best practice
  • strong client relationship focused on delivering a tailored service

Further information

Statutory service for Maintained Schools

Internal Audit will undertake an audit review of your school every five years (current reviews are being undertaken remotely in line with council requirements). The audit, based currently on the Schools Financial Value Standard, will review:

  • key elements of your school’s governance arrangements
  • procedures and internal controls for key financial systems, including purchasing, collection of income and debtor control, payroll (including appointments)
  • risk management arrangements within the school

Quality Assurance

We have a Quality Assurance & Improvement Programme which ensures we meet the requirements of the Public Sector Internal Audit Standards, confirmed by external Peer Review, operating in an effective and efficient manner.


Service Level Agreement Information:

Please click on the link below to view a detailed version of the Service Level Agreement 2021/22:


Lead Contact Officer

Mark Niblock – Chief Internal Auditor
0151 666 3432
Email: markniblock@wirral.gov.uk