Accounting Procedures in Post Primary Institutions


The term accounting as a discipline has been defined by different scholars and groups as a profession which involves devising and operation on information system for collecting measuring, recording, summarizing, transmitting and interception the result of economic transactions past or prospective in resources and in claims on resources.  It is also the art of recording classifying and summarizing in a significant manner and in terms of money and monetary value transactions and event which are part at leant of a financial character and interpreting the result thereof.

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Accounting in Nigeria dates back to the history and development of Accounting in the United Kingdom, it has many branches via financial accounting, Cost Accounting and Management Accounting e.t.c.

“Accounting procedures in post primary institutions involves the use of school accounting systems.  This entails the collection recording and accounting for revenue in post primary institutions.  Revenue can be generally defined as those income receipted or returns from various sources of founds to the government in the school system, receipts such as Boarding Equipment’s, Tuition Caution, P.T.A, Library and Guidance and Counseling Fees represent revenue to the government as provided in financial instruction, p1 (03001) in post primary institutions, the collection, officers called the revenue collections also called the Bursars takes charge of the collection and custody of funds.

In Udenu Local Government Area of where we have majority of the schools with thickly populated students in made up of (16) sixteen schools located in different pats of under municipalities that make up the local government area with administrative head quarter at community secondary Obollo Afor.  The schools in Udenu local government area accountable to sub-treasury of post primary school Management Board Headquarters headed by a Director, finance and supplies.

The schools with their population capacity are:

1.     C.S.S Obollo Afor                             952

2.     S.P.M.C.S.S Obollo Eke                    1349

3.     C.S.S. Obollo Ettiti                           442

4.     A.C.S.S Obollo Ettiti                         809

5.     G.S.S Obollo Afor                             813

6.     B.H.S Orba                                       1115

7.     G.S.S Owere Eze Orba                       1141

8.     C.G.S.S Imilize Uno                          1420

9.     C.S.S Imilize Agu                              549

10.   B.H.S Ezimo Agu                              374

11.   C.S.S Ezimo Uno                              502

12.   C.S.S Umudu                                    833

13.   C.S.S Umitodo                                  420

14.   C.S.S Amalla                                    620

15.   C.S.S Ogbodu Aba                            577

16.   N.W.E.C Obollo Etitti                       58


Many writers seem to agree that accounting “entails the process of identifying monetary measure, and communicating economic information to permit informed judgement and decisions by users of the information”.  As the definition shows, accounting has two main functions:

Firstly, measuring and analysis economic data, secondly communicating the result of this process to interested parties.

The second function is performed means of financial reports, portraying the finical aspects of the activities of an organisation over a certain period, including the employment of its assets for maximization of profit, such reports are required to show the manner in which the organizations fund have been utilized during the period and with what result and also how the funds stand at a particular point in time.

Birglams, R.D Hawkings E.N and Herbert F.T, said that Revenue and Accounting are policy making instruments which require a confirmed process, while there is no requirement that revenue decisions be considered regularly, as most in any spending decisions.  There is still amply opportunity to shape and re-shape the revenue system.  Thus there is need to increase school share of equipment fee to meet the increase in spending.

Mcculers L.D and P.G stated (1978), that “Revenue is recognized as cash is received” so to achieve this the revenue collector should be properly cared for delivering the goods.

Accounting for government and non-profit entities (sixth edition) Harry L.E, stated that one of the functions of revenue which should have been received has, in fact been received and this posses a big challenge on both the principals and the bursars,

Financial management in Nigeria public sector 1985 revenue generation Oshaiami K & Dean D.N, said that the state faces a problem of severe fiscal imbalance because their revenue are very small in relation to their expenditure.  This is why I also recommend an increase in the school share of equipment fees, because the schools expenditure is more in relation to the budgeted revenue.

According to Trueblood D.S. study group report, “The basic objective of accounting is to provide information useful for making economic decision”.  This view would seen to be supported by more recent U.K corporate report of 1975 which stated.  The fundamental objective of accounting is to communicate economic measurement of event and information about the resources and performances of an organization or entity useful to those having reasonable rights to such information.

Akpan and Radebogh had it that accounting system ought to involves or reflect the environments they serve, accounting policies and methods adopted in preparing them by user groups are always useful and basic and relevant to their various needs.

According tot he Hand Book on School Administration, section 7 accounting code for post primary institutions is designed to define as concisely as possible, the duties and responsibilities of principals of post primary schools and the bursars and their respective roles in the operation of the new treasury accounting system in the various accounting procedures, which will be applied in the collection of school revenue and in the disbursement of funds provided for the budgets programs and activities of the board in the current and recurrent estimates.

Furthermore, the hand book states in section 7 93) that for finance and accounting purposes, the duties and responsibilities of the principals may be as follows.

Ensuring that safe custody of cash on stores held in the school or by regular periodic check of relevant records and reporting of any irregularity or loss promptly to the executive secretary, post primary schools management board, Enugu for necessary recommendation or remedial action.

Approval for payment of all bill debited to the institution which must be support by relevant local purchase orders, job orders and copies of contracts e.t.c.

Checking and instilling of cash book at least once in a week to ensure that all movies collected have been properly accounted for and paid into the treasury and that the corresponding treasury receipts have been firmly posted on the relevant pages of the cash book.

Signing of salary sub-receipts payment vouchers after they have been checked as to the correctness of the details and the accuracy of the arithmetical computations.

Regular examination of the departmental vote expenditure account book, which must be submitted to him for the initialing of the entries made there in every time a voucher is presented for his signature.

Ensuring that the weekly returns to financial management branch ministry of finance and the monthly returns to post primary schools management board headquarters are rendered signing  of cheques jointly with the bursars in maximized by taking every possible step to collect fees promptly from the students.

The principals as the vote controller and councilor of exchequer controls the accounting department in the school system while the bursar is a sublimate officer of the board.

The accounting function of the bursar in the school system is as follows:

According to section 7 (4)

Advance the principal on the correct procedure on the use of funds with the provision of the financial instructions.  Teachers service manual or circulars from headquarters, ministry of finance of finance and accounts.

Preparing of salary vouchers sub-receipts which must be supported whenever necessary with letters of appointment promotions, terminations of appointments or dismissals, last pay certificate (LPC) for newly transferred offices.

Maintenance of cash book, department vote expenditure account, D.V.E, A, Book Advance Ledger ensuring that they are checked and initiated regularly by the principal at such regular intervals as he may decide.

Collection of fees from students and issuing of school fees receipts to the tax payers, lodging of the bank and payment of collections into the sub-treasury receipts will be issued school fees collected must be banked daily and should on no account remain in the bursar custody in the safe longer than forty-eight hours after collection of the money.  Furthermore, the financial matters especially as regards the provisions of the financial instructions, finance circulars from the ministry of finance and post primary schools management board.  The hand book also states that relationship between the principal and the bursar in the school system intervals.

The principal as the head of the institutions is directly responsible tot he post primary school management board for the security of cash, stores and other property received by or issued tot he institution.

He is required to check and initial relevant accounting records.  The bursar is a subordinate officer and should take instructions from the principals.  This shows that the principal is the accounting authority to vote controller.  He is in charge of accounting the overseas the collection and disbursements of fees. You can see that he is the sole authority and the bursar the accounting officer becomes only a subordinate officer and have no say over what he collect, the handbook went further to say that, the principal is a revenue collector and his responsibility in this respect is prescribed in chapter (6) six of the financial instruction.

It is his duty to collect and account promptly the school fees revenue in accordance with financial instruction 0606.  He will be held responsible for any short fall in the revenue expectation on budget in respect of the institution”.  This goes to show extent of the power given to the school principals.

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