Report 2021-614 Recommendations

When an audit is completed and a report is issued, auditees must provide the State Auditor with information and periodic reports regarding their progress in implementing the reportís recommendations. For audits conducted under the State High Risk Audit Program, these periodic reports are due every 90 days from the issue date of the report until such time as the State Auditor directs the auditee otherwise, according to title 2, section 61024 of the California Code of Regulations. Additionally, Senate Bill 1452 (Chapter 452, Statutes of 2006), requires auditees who have not implemented recommendations after one year, to report to us and to the Legislature why they have not implemented them or to state when they intend to implement them. Below, is a listing of each recommendation the State Auditor made in the report referenced and a link to the most recent response from the auditee addressing their progress in implementing the recommendation and the State Auditor's assessment of auditee's response based on our review of the supporting documentation.

Recommendations in Report 2021-614: California Department of Education: It Needs to Provide Better Oversight to Ensure That Local Educational Agencies Promptly and Effectively Use Federal COVID‑19 Funds (Release Date: October 2021)

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Recommendations to Education, Department of
Number Recommendation Status
1

To ensure that LEAs submit required spending data so that it can effectively oversee their use of ESSER and GEER funds, Education should continue to track the number of LEAs that fail to submit their quarterly spending reports and perform targeted outreach to these LEAs.

Fully Implemented
2

To ensure that LEAs submit required spending data so that it can effectively oversee their use of ESSER and GEER funds, Education should seek additional resources and staffing as necessary to ensure that all LEAs submit required spending reports.

Fully Implemented
3

To ensure that LEAs effectively use their ESSER and GEER funds before the spending deadlines to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on students, Education should develop a robust process for tracking LEAs' spending of these funds. As part of this process, Education should regularly assess LEAs' spending data to identify those that may be in jeopardy of not spending all of their allocations before the deadlines. This assessment should include projecting LEAs' future spending based on their spending patterns.

Pending
4

To ensure that LEAs effectively use their ESSER and GEER funds before the spending deadlines to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on students, Education should develop a robust process for tracking LEAs' spending of these funds. As part of this process, Education should follow up with identified LEAs to determine whether they have plans for spending all of their funds before the deadlines and whether these plans are reasonable.

Pending
5

To ensure that LEAs effectively use their ESSER and GEER funds before the spending deadlines to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on students, Education should develop a robust process for tracking LEAs' spending of these funds. As part of this process, Education should identify the best practices that have enabled some LEAs to spend their ESSER and GEER funds quickly and effectively. It should communicate those practices to all LEAs to help them maximize their use of these funds.

Fully Implemented
6

To sufficiently monitor LEAs' use of ESSER and GEER funds, Education should establish a policy that specifies, at a minimum, the number of LEAs it will select for monitoring reviews to obtain adequate assurance that LEAs are spending funds in accordance with requirements. Further, Education should follow the new policy to ensure that it selects the appropriate number of LEAs to monitor.

Will Not Implement
7

To ensure that it monitors LEAs that may be at higher risk of misinterpreting spending requirements or misusing ESSER funds, Education should, when selecting LEAs for monitoring, use the data that LEAs submit to identify those that have reported significant amounts of spending of ESSER funds in the category of Other Activities.

Will Not Implement
8

To ensure that it monitors LEAs that may be at higher risk of misinterpreting spending requirements or misusing ESSER funds, Education should, as part of its monitoring, select and review transactions that LEAs have reported in the Other Activities category for the ESSER program to determine whether the LEAs have used these funds for purposes allowed under federal law.

Will Not Implement
9

To ensure that it monitors LEAs that may be at higher risk of misinterpreting spending requirements or misusing ESSER funds, Education should, if it finds that the LEAs it monitors have improperly categorized their spending in Other Activities, provide guidance to all LEAs to clarify the types of spending that they should include in this category.

Will Not Implement


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