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Brent 'takes its financial role seriously'

I was dismayed to read the article entitled "Financial scandal continues to plague Brent Council" (4 May), accusing Brent Council of being negligent in its duty of overseeing school finances robustly and effectively.

Brent Council takes its role in ensuring sound financial management in schools very seriously and takes firm action against schools whenever there is evidence of it taking place.

In the case of Malorees Junior School, a thorough audit identified that a number of improvements in financial management were necessary and the current headteacher is actively engaged in making these changes.

Brent has more than 80 schools, which receive an audit every two or three years. This kind of rolling programme is normal for local authorities - and Brent does more than most. In fact, the detailed nature of our audit brief is precisely why Brent has managed to uncover these, thankfully rare, examples of financial mismanagement in the four schools your article mentions.

Whenever irregularities occur we do not attempt to conceal them but are open and transparent at all times about our investigations and provide appropriate support to schools so that corrective action can be taken.

Krutika Pau, Director of children and families, Brent Council.

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