Public accountability : the perceived usefulness of school annual reports
Tooley, Stuart & Hooks, Jillian (2010) Public accountability : the perceived usefulness of school annual reports. Australasian Accounting Business & Finance Journal, 4(2), pp. 39-59.
Annual reports are an important component of New Zealand schools’ public accountability. Through the annual report the governance body informs stakeholders about school aims, objectives, achievements, use of resources, and financial performance. This paper identifies the perceived usefulness of the school annual report to recipients and the extent to which it serves as an instrument of accountability and/or decision-usefulness. The study finds that the annual report is used for a variety of purposes, including: to determine if the school has conducted its activities effectively and achieved stated objectives and goals; to examine student achievements; to assess financial accountability and performance; and to make decisions about the school as a suitable environment for their child/children. Nevertheless, the study also finds that other forms of communication are more important sources of information about the school than the annual report which is seen to fall short of users’ required qualities of understandability, reliability and readability. It would appear imperative that policy makers review the functional role of the school annual report which is a costly document to prepare. Further, school managers need to engage in alternative means to communicate sufficient and meaningful information in the discharge of public accountability.
Impact and interest:
Citation counts are sourced monthly from and citation databases.
These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.
Citations counts from theindexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.
Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.
|Item Type:||Journal Article|
|Keywords:||School annual reporting, Public accountability, New Zealand|
|Subjects:||Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > ACCOUNTING AUDITING AND ACCOUNTABILITY (150100) > Auditing and Accountability (150102)|
|Divisions:||Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Accountancy
|Copyright Owner:||Copyright 2010 Australasian Accounting Business and Finance Journal and the authors.|
|Deposited On:||16 Sep 2010 00:24|
|Last Modified:||29 Feb 2012 14:29|
Repository Staff Only: item control page