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3 golden objects Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Legislative Auditor - Financial Audit Division

Report Summary
Minnesota State Residential Academies

Financial Related Audit

For the Five Years Ended June 30, 1996


Public Release Date: September 20, 1996 No. 96-38

Agency Background

The Minnesota State Residential Academies provide programs and educational services in a residential setting for deaf, blind, and deaf-blind children. The residential academies are composed of the Minnesota Academy for the Deaf and the Minnesota Academy for the Blind. The residential academies are under the direction of co-administrators. Dr. Katherine Jankowski is the administrator for the Academy for the Deaf and Ms. Elaine Sveen is the administrator for the Academy for the Blind.

Audit Objectives and Conclusions

Our audit objectives were to obtain an understanding of management controls relevant to tuition, federal grants, payroll, professional/technical services, and resident accounts. We also designed our audit to provide reasonable assurance that the residential academies complied with finance related legal provisions.

The residential academies accurately billed and properly collected and deposited its tuition revenue in a timely manner. Tuition revenue was properly recorded in the state's accounting system. We noted that two individuals had conflicting responsibilities over tuition receipts. The residential academies submitted accurate requests to the Minnesota Department of Education for federal reimbursements and spent its grant funds in accordance with the provisions of the grants. These expenditure were properly recorded on the state's accounting system.

The residential academies properly authorized and supported payroll transactions, processed payroll in accordance with applicable bargaining unit agreements, and accurately recorded payroll in the state's accounting system. The academies properly authorized consultant and professional/technical service contracts and adequately supported payments according to established policies and procedures. Professional/technical service expenditures were properly recorded on the state's accounting system. However, we noted that the academies need to document shared service agreements and improve controls over its purchasing and receiving functions.

The residential academies' student funds are physically secure. The academies record the resident students financial activity promptly, accurately, and in accordance with the student's authorizations. In addition, resident student activity is reconciled to the bank balances on a regular basis. However, a lack of separation of duties exists over the resident student accounts.