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AIBU to think the Free School system is potentially open to financial manipulation/conflict of interest?

(6 Posts)
KeepOnRockingInTheFreeWorld Sun 30-Nov-14 20:35:18

Saw this article in one of the local papers this weekend:

Link to article

The gist is that two of the Free Schools locally have made large financial payments for rather vague services, to people who are closely linked either by being govenors, trustees, or similar. AIBU to think that this is a conflict of interest and shouldn't be allowed (and certainly not funded with taxpayer's money)?

The Langley Hall Free school opened in 2011 according to Wikepedia Wikepedia so it's a bit weird that the director tells the newspaper that a £28,000 payment to her husband in 2012-2013 for "purchases" was to "reimburse set-up expenses for the school" ...

AIBU to be concerned that the Free School system is paid for by government money, with considerable budgets, and yet money can be directed from their budget pots towards friends/relatives/trustees seemingly without restriction?

Has anyone else seen this happen in their area?

Aethelfleda Sun 30-Nov-14 21:03:06

What about the other school mentioned in the link? They paid one of the school governor's company £100,000 for "consulting"!

Icimoi Sun 30-Nov-14 21:48:40

YANBU. The very low level of financial supervision from the DfE for free schools is frankly shocking.

JazzAnnNonMouse Mon 01-Dec-14 08:11:31

But it happens all the time -money moves from one pot to another, most are controlled by a circle of well off people.

Just look at fracking - is it any surprise that close friends and family have shares in the company set to make millions?

mymummademelistentoshitmusic Mon 01-Dec-14 08:37:18

It happened in Bradford. Nobody was surprised, sadly.

Aethelfleda Tue 02-Dec-14 19:20:23

Is there any sanction if people do it though? I'm guessing few school trustees would be daft enough to be actually fraudulant, but are there not regulations to prevent them buying possibly "grey" services from linked friends/relatives/staff? If not, why not?

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