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The Administration for Children and Families Region II Did Not Always Resolve Head Start Grantees' Single Audit Findings in Accordance With Federal Requirements

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) had a process in place to ensure that Head Start grantees took corrective action on A-133 audit findings. Head Start grantees are required to have Single Audits conducted in accordance with Office of Management and Budget Circular A 133 (also known as A-133 audits) for fiscal years beginning before December 26, 2014. However, for Region II Head Start grantees that submitted audit reports to the Federal Audit Clearinghouse, ACF did not always resolve recurring audit findings in accordance with Federal requirements and ACF policies and procedures. Specifically, ACF did not issue letters transmitting management decisions for six of the eight audit reports we reviewed within 6 months after receiving the reports. In addition, although ACF provided the grantees with letters stating that the corrective actions planned or taken should prevent recurrence of the findings, ACF did not establish specific dates for grantees to correct deficiencies noted in the audit reports. Finally, ACF did not always follow up with grantees to ensure that they actually took corrective actions to resolve audit findings. The prompt resolution of audit findings helps ensure that Federal funds are effectively and efficiently used to carry out the activities for which they were authorized.

We recommended that ACF (1) review its staffing levels to ensure that the audit resolution process is conducted in accordance with Federal requirements, including the requirement to issue management decisions to grantees within 6 months; (2) provide training to Head Start grantees on implementing corrective action plans; (3) include in the letters sent to Head Start grantees specific dates for correcting deficiencies; and (4) monitor Head Start grantees to ensure that grantees actually implement corrective actions. ACF concurred with our first and second recommendations. ACF did not concur with our third or fourth recommendations.

Filed under: Administration for Children and Families