For the record: Response to last night’s Meridiantonight report on Temple Mill School

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Temple Mill School

Meridian Tonight report – 25 July 2013 Council accused of cheating schoolchildren

Meridian Tonight broadcast a story headlined ‘Council cheated school children‘ during its evening news bulletin on Thursday, 26 July about a dispute between Medway Council and Temple Mill Primary School in Strood over a proposal not to to return monies stolen by a former employee, jailed last year for fraud, to the school.

The report accused Medway Council of cheating primary school children out of almost £250,000 stating the trial judge had ordered former school bursar Sandra Ross to repay every penny to the school.

Please read below the full statement sent to the reporter who put together the report:

‘The school receives a £1.1 million annual settlement based on a formula distribution, which is the same as every other school in Medway. This adequately covers the education needs of their pupils and is sufficient for staff to run the school smoothly.

In fact, the school has built up a significant surplus, which after this funding over the past two years, now stands at around £95,000. In addition, the school has recovered a quarter of the amount taken by its former bursar Sandra Ross, which resulted in her conviction last October.

Rather than pay back the remaining amount to the school – which means it would be getting more money than similar size schools locally and therefore does not need – the council’s audit committee has recommended the outstanding amount be used to provide training for governors and headteachers at schools across Medway.

This will ensure any future potential incidents of fraud are uncovered before they reach the scale that was unfortunately allowed to occur at this individual school. This recommendation will be going before the council’s cabinet for final decision next month.

The recommendation was reached following a meeting of the council’s audit committee on 11 July Thecabinet is due to make the final decision at its next meeting on 6 August.’

The report also included a claim by parents that the money came from funds raised by them.  Some of the £212,000 taken by Sandra Ross did come from voluntary funds but that amount would have been covered by the money already returned to the school.

News from Medway Council website

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One Response to “For the record: Response to last night’s Meridiantonight report on Temple Mill School”

  1. brad Says:

    so the head teacher and govenours need training and not the auditor who missed the fraud on many visits to the school?also the school may have the same funding as local schools but for those five years when the money was taken the school didnt have the same amount as the other schools and in fact lost staff due to lack of funds.the IT equipment is still in need of replacing,along with books for the libery,audio equipment and tv/dvd ect.lots of the outside play equipment is what has been donated by parents.maybe meridien should have a look around the school at the state of some of the equipment from the past five years.i should imagine the equipment at the auditors offices are much more up to date!

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