Performance and Compliance Audits in Progress
COVID-19 – Responding to social impacts (Tasmanian Government’s processes to identify and agree the high priority social impacts to address resulting from the pandemic)
Department of Communities Tasmania, Department of Police, Fire and Emergency Management, Department of Health, Department of Premier and Cabinet
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all parts of the population but has been particularly detrimental to members of those social groups who are most vulnerable, for example, children and young people, older people, people with disabilities and people who were already living in poverty.
The Australian and Tasmanian Governments recognised early on a response was required to address the most severe immediate impacts of the pandemic, caused not only by the impact on people’s health, but the wider social impacts resulting both from the virus and the suppression measures.
The audit will assess the effectiveness of the arrangements put in place by the Tasmanian Government to identify and address the high priority social impacts of the pandemic. The audit will be undertaken as three separate components.
This stage of the audit will assess how robust were the Tasmanian Government’s processes to identify and agree high priority social impacts to address resulting from the pandemic.
Tabling: November 2021
Accessing services for the safety and wellbeing of children and young people – the Strong Families, Safe Kids Advice and Referral Line
Department of Communities Tasmania
The Department of Communities Tasmania has altered the focus of Child Protection from a ‘remove child once assessed as at risk’ scenario to preserve family unit using a number of early interventions and only remove a child when all other options have been exhausted. A key platform to the reforms was the introduction of the ‘single front door’, the Strong Families, Safe Kids Advice and Referral Line (ARL), as the entry point for all types of reporting (including mandatory reporting), requests for support and advice.
This audit will assess:
- whether the ARL, as the primary point of access, has been effective in providing access to appropriate services to support the safety and wellbeing of children
- whether the plans for the introduction of the ARL have been efficiently and effectively implemented
- whether the ARL is operating effectively to achieve better access to services for the safety and welfare of children
- whether the Department of Communities Tasmania knows whether it is achieving the objectives of the ARL.
Improving outcomes for senior secondary students in Tasmania
Department of Education
In 2015, the Government began extending all high schools to Years 11 and 12. The last high school to be extended will commence offering Years 11 and 12 in 2022. In addition, the Education Act 2016, passed by Parliament in November 2016, increased minimum school leaving requirements to: completion of Year 12; completion of a Certificate III in vocational training; or attaining the age of 18 years. The increased minimum school leaving requirements were in place from 2020. Together, these reforms aim to improve access to and participation and engagement in senior secondary education.
This audit will assess the Department of Education’s progress towards implementing education reforms, including whether the Department:
- effectively planned to implement the reforms
- effectively and efficiently implemented the reforms
- sufficiently and appropriately reports on progress and impact of reform implementation.
Please see the Office’s Annual Plan of Work for 2021-22 for other future audits here.
If you have any information that you believe could be useful to us, please write to us at:
Tasmanian Audit Office GPO Box 851 Hobart TAS 7001