New Charity Inquiry: Avicenna Global
Charity regulator opens inquiry into educational charity
On 3 June 2019 the Charity Commission opened a statutory inquiry into Avicenna Global (1152587) due to concerns over potential misconduct and/or mismanagement at the charity.
The Commission had previously opened a regulatory compliance case after serious allegations were made regarding the financial conduct of one of the charity’s trustees. As part of this case, the Commission inspected the charity’s records and found a number of serious regulatory concerns.
The charity’s relationship with Avicenna Academy School, a Sheffield-based school, is unclear. The Commission is concerned that the school may have previously been operated by the charity before it was transferred to a trustee.
The Commission is also concerned about the charity’s current board and its ability to manage conflicts of interest and make independent decisions, particularly given that two of the four trustees are siblings and a third is their brother-in-law. A relative of a trustee has also been the independent examiner on the charity’s accounts.
The inquiry will:
- determine whether the Avicenna Academy School was ever owned and operated by the charity
- if Avicenna Academy School was but is no longer part of the charity, determine whether the decision to transfer the school to a third party was made lawfully, in accordance with the charity’s governing document and in the best interests of the charity
- establish whether there has been any unauthorised trustee benefit
- establish whether the trustees have exercised their duties as trustees in the governance of the charity, and in particular their duty to account for the charity’s funds and the management of conflicts of interest.
It is the Commission’s policy, after it has concluded an inquiry, to publish a report detailing what issues the inquiry looked at, what actions were undertaken as part of the inquiry and what the outcomes were. Reports of previous inquiries by the Commission are available on GOV.UK.
Notes to Editors
The Charity Commission is the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales; our role is to regulate charity trustees’ compliance with the charity law framework.
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