Independent assurance for schools and academies

We offer a range of services to ensure you meet the responsibilities set out in the Academies Trust Handbook. You can rely on the expertise of our professionals who understand codes of ethics, standards and best practice.

Data protection officer (DPO)

We act as the DPO for over 500 schools across the country. Our service ensures you can manage your obligations under the Data Protection Act 2018 and the UK General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Find out more through our partners at North Yorkshire Education Services.


Data protection services for schools and academies – Veritau brochure
Internal audit

From 2020, government guidance changed, meaning that your school’s external auditor cannot undertake internal audit activities as well.

Veritau’s internal audit service will help you control your school’s finances, reducing the costs associated with hiring an in-house auditor. This is an important element of ensuring internal scrutiny.

Counter fraud

We offer our corporate fraud service to schools and academies focusing on prevention, detection and deterrence. If you have concerns about fraud, we can conduct one-off investigations, no matter how sensitive the topic.


Whistleblowing goes further than fraud, and can focus on many types of “wrongdoing”. It’s important that academies have a whistleblowing policy in place and that staff know how to raise a concern.

Veritau’s team offers a specialist annual whistleblowing support package for academies.

Risk management

Risk management is an essential component of good governance and contributes to your overall assurance framework.

We offer specialist risk management services for schools, including policy development, training, reviewing frameworks, running workshops, and providing advice and support.

Are schools and academies required to have an internal audit?

Yes, although the arrangements will vary between schools. Maintained schools will be covered by their local authority’s internal audit provision. Academy schools are required to arrange a programme of internal audit (otherwise called internal scrutiny). Academy schools can choose from a number of options:

  • Employ an in-house internal auditor
  • Buy-in an internal audit service from a suitable provider
  • Appoint a non-employed trustee
  • Arrange a peer review by a chief finance officer from another trust

Whichever option is chosen, the staff conducting the work should be suitably qualified and experienced.

Do schools and academies need a data protection officer?

GDPR requires that all public authorities, including schools, appoint a data protection officer (DPO).

They can be based in-house, shared with others or bought in as a service. Your DPO must act independently and with objectivity and is there to:

  • Inform and advise on data protection requirements
  • Support you to monitor internal compliance
  • Assist you with Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIAs)
  • Demonstrate accountability
  • Act as a single point of contact with the Information Commissioner’s Office

How does fraud occur in schools?

At Veritau, we help prevent fraud by training your staff on fraud awareness, cybercrime and emerging threats facing schools. Our independent whistleblowing service makes it easier for members of staff to report their concerns.

Regular alerts and reminders help staff to detect fraud if your organisation is targeted by fraudsters. We can also help deter fraud by assisting your school to put strong controls and processes in place.

Experts in delivering schools services

Speak to a member of our team to see how we can help. At Veritau we have specialists with experience delivering assurance services in the education sector.

Rosie Kelly - Information Governance Manager

Rosie Kelly

Information Governance Manager

Rosie is an experienced DPO with a background in the legal sector, who holds the CIPP/E certification from the IAPP. She specialises in UK GDPR compliance in the education sector, including expertise in Edtech and data protection governance in Multi-Academy Trusts. Rosie leads on training and resources, contract assurances, international data transfers and promoting awareness of regulatory changes.

Amy Stroud - Senior Internal Auditor

Amy Stroud

Internal Audit Manager

Amy joined Veritau in 2017 as a trainee on the graduate programme. Amy holds the Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) qualification. Amy now manages the delivery of internal audit services to our council’s schools and to over 20 academy trusts of all sizes and structures.

Kelly Holmes - Senior Corporate Fraud Investigator

Kelly Holmes

Senior Corporate Fraud Investigator

Kelly holds both Accredited Counter Fraud Specialist status and a qualification in investigative practice from CIPFA. She has many years of experience as a fraud investigator and leads on complex internal and whistleblowing investigations. Kelly also has experience working in a busy HR team and is ACAS trained on conducting internal investigations.

Connor Munro - Assistant Director – Audit Assurance

Connor Munro

Assistant Director – Audit Assurance

Connor is a Chartered Internal Auditor with experience of internal audit both in the public and private sectors, delivering complex and varied work. He is the audit manager for City of York Council and Birmingham Children’s Trust. Connor also leads on our risk management services.

Helen Swan - Assistant Director – Information Governance

Helen Swan

Assistant Director – Information Governance

Helen is a professionally qualified information governance practitioner with experience in delivering services across the public sector. She oversees Veritau’s schools, councils and access teams, focusing on business development and client relationship management.

Case study

Supporting schools with data protection during Covid-19

Our data protection officer team had to adapt the service quickly during Covid-19. Rapid response was essential and the team worked flexibly to support schools during lockdown.

Read this case study

Get in touch

We work with our partners at North Yorkshire Education Services in delivering services to schools and academies. Visit their website for more information and to get in touch. Alternatively, you can contact Veritau directly to speak to an assurance expert.