Following its tabling in Federal Parliament, the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) has published a Performance Audit Report into the effectiveness of the governance board of the Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS).
The report has been published as part of ANAO’s ongoing audit of the effectiveness of public sector boards which are covered by the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act). Around 59 corporate Commonwealth entities subject to the PGPA Act have governing boards, comprising a total of approximately 600 board positions. The performance audits of board governance provide independent assurance to the Parliament on whether the selected boards have established effective arrangements to comply with the audited legislative and policy requirements and adopted practices that support effective governance. The audits also focus on any examples of better practice which may be worth highlighting as a learning for other boards.
AFTRS is a corporate Commonwealth entity established under the Australian Film, Television and Radio School Act 1973 (AFTRS Act). It received AUD$25 million in government departmental appropriations in 2020-21 and generated some $8.4 million in “own-source” revenue.
The Australian National Audit Office found that the governance board of AFTRS is “largely effective”, and made three recommendations:
- The AFTRS council review internal processes to ensure that convocation appointments are made in accordance with all requirements of the Australian Film, Television and Radio School Act 1973 and that a roll of all members of convocation is maintained.
- The AFTRS council review internal processes to ensure that staff and student elections are carried out in accordance with all requirements of the Australian Film, Television and Radio School (Council Elections) Regulations 2017.
- The AFTRS council implement systematic monitoring and review of the achievement of performance measures included in the corporate plan and Portfolio Budget Statements.
AFTRS agreed to all three recommendations.
February 2022 saw AFTRS CEO Nell Greenwood introduce a new five-year plan for the national screen and broadcast school with a commitment to the principles of National Reach, Excellence and Sustainability. It is available here.