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  • Writer's pictureCrisis Shield

Practice what you preach: Corruption rocks Dep. of Education

As Victoria’s Independant Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) investigates allegations of millions of dollars of Department of Education funds being fraudulently spent on parties, wine and holidays by senior officials (see also this article in The Age, April 28), people are asking how could a trusted government agency fall into such crisis? What went wrong?

It is highly shocking and disappointing that people in such senior and trusted positions could abuse their power, and a system that describes itself as being based around supporting lifelong learning and healthy development, strengthening families and helping to equip people with the skills and knowledge for a twenty-first–century economy and society. These values need to be more than just words on paper, and should be articulated in everything an organisation does.

As the IBAC investigation continues, over 50 witnesses are expected to be examined and the education department will be scrutinized on whether they practice what they preach in regards to their mission and values. With $2.25million being diverted away from education and children how can there have been such a fundamental betrayal of the departments stated mission to provide high-quality education, training, development, wellbeing and child health services? Are these an act of a few rogue individuals or an accepted culture?

This follows on from the highly publicised investigation by NSW’s ICAC into illegal gifts and money from property developers to politicians. Now with the ABC’s Four Corners exposure of corruption in Australia’s universities unfortunately corruption is seen to be becoming a common occurrence for governments and the private sector. This reinforces why the board or an organisation's leaders need to emphasise their vision and values, and work on creating a culture that sticks to them.

Continued emphasis on the role of the values within an organisation is highly important to maintaining a strong culture of excellence. Call Briggs Communications today to discus your preparation and response strategy should your organisation befall an internal failure or to discuss strategy that will mitigate the risk of it happening in the first place.

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