Identify and report school and education fraud

Any funds defrauded from our schools (and taxpayers), takes money away from the education of our children and young people.

That’s why we want to make it easy to identify and report suspected fraud.

Examples of school and education fraud

The following are examples of fraudulent activities:

  • Application fraud - An applicant applying for a position in a school and failing to declare something that they are legally required to declare
  • Inappropriate pay awards - Falsifying information in order to obtain an excessive pay award which may include: income increments, honorariums, bonuses, and allowances
  • Off payroll payments - Payments to staff made through petty cash or by other means in order to avoid the individual’s and the school’s duty to pay tax or national insurance
  • Long term sickness abuse – Falsely claiming sick pay, and gaining employment elsewhere, whilst continuing to receive payment from the school
  • Collusion / corruption in supplier selection - Inflated payments to suppliers, contractors, consultants or fraudulent misuse of school cheques, falsification of timesheets, overtime claims and expenses
  • Theft of assets: including tablets and ICT kit, purchasing from fictitious suppliers
  • Manipulation of school bank accounts - Fraudulent transfers or to run unauthorised and hidden bank accounts, into which fundraising monies were hidden and later stolen
  • Undeclared conflicts of interest: In the supply of goods and/or works, e.g. over-specified and/or under delivered

Report suspected school and education fraud

You can report your suspicions directly to us:

Complete our online form to report fraud    


  • Call the fraud hotline on 01432 260698
  • Write to us at: Counter Fraud Department, Corporate Services, Plough Lane Offices, Hereford, HR4 0LE

Your referral will be taken in complete confidence and any personal information provided will be treated as strictly confidential.

Please provide us with as much detail as possible so that we can investigate the matter effectively. Where a referral does not provide us with enough detailed information about the matter, it may not be possible to investigate.

You can report fraud anonymously. However, in most cases it would help us if you leave your contact details, so that we can contact you for further information should we need it.

How we deal with fraud reports

All reports of alleged schools and education fraud are treated very seriously and are investigated by the Counter Fraud Service.

Any individual that intentionally and dishonestly provides false information, may be investigated in line with the Fraud Act 2006 and other relevant legislation. We may also pursue prosecution, under Section 222 of the Local Government Act 1972, or work alongside the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).