September 8, 2021 – Despite the challenges brought about by the pandemic, the Department of Education (DepEd) was able to satisfactorily comply with the accounting standards set by the Commission of Audit (COA) for CY 2020 and performed significantly bettercompared to the previous year.
“Based on this year’s audit report, the Department has delivered an increase in the implementation of the compliance report through the substantial decrease in the misstatements noted by the Commission,” Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones noted.
Undersecretary for Finance Annalyn Sevilla explainedthat some misstatements cited by COA in the CY 2020 Consolidated Annual Audit Report were identified as recording errors, which are now being rectified by DepEd following the recommendations of the auditing agency.
According to Usec. Sevilla, DepEd found ways to accomplish improvements on accounting standards and budget utilization in 2020 despite the limitations of the COVID pandemic, including having limited staff and mobility due to work-from-home and skeletal work arrangements.
She also cited that the Department managed to overcome challenges in procurement and logistics as well as timeline constraints.
“DepEd’s budget for 2020 was intended for traditional face-to-face instruction, and adjustments had to be made, and funds quickly realigned,” Usec. Sevilla shared.
In addition, Usec. Sevilla said that the Bayanihan 1 Act fund is currently at 93% utilization rate after Congress extended its validity.
The Department has recently distributed laptops and sim cards with connectivity load to personnel as part of the Bayanihan 2 implementation.
“DepEd, as always, remains committed to serving its mandate, and as such is working diligently to address concerns and gather feedback on its program implementation. We have been coordinating closely with COA and as a result of this, we are thankful to them to have our explanations included under Annex D in the CAAR 2020 report,” Sec. Briones said.
“Being the largest bureaucracy in the country, we are eager to sustain our momentum of upholding the principles of transparency and good governance for the benefit of our Filipino learners,” Briones emphasized.