ISKL is committed to promoting and maintaining high standards of integrity, transparency, and accountability, as well as good corporate governance in the workplace. We have a zero-tolerance policy towards fraud, corruption, crime, misconduct and/or any form of actual or potential wrongdoing.
The purpose of this Procedure is to enable employees and other stakeholders conducting business with ISKL to, in good faith, disclose information relating to any unethical behavior and activities within the school.
Any alleged wrongdoing will be investigated and where applicable, ISKL will protect any party who makes a good faith report of wrongdoing, from any Detrimental Action.
ISKL reserves the right, at its discretion, to depart from this Procedure as and when it deems necessary depending on the specific circumstances of the situation.
WHAT IS WHISTLEBLOWING?
Whistleblowing can be defined as raising a concern in relation to wrongdoing occurring within an organization. It is usually performed on grounds of ethics or conscience, or genuine concern over unethical behavior observed within the organization. A whistleblower is a person who makes a report of Improper Conduct under this Procedure.
The objectives of this Procedure include the following:
- To enhance corporate governance by fostering an environment where integrity and ethical behavior are upheld and maintained and any Improper Conduct is exposed.
- To prevent, detect or correct any inappropriate activities.
- To provide a formal and confidential channel for stakeholders to file a report that they believe is a material violation of the law or constitutes an Improper Conduct, as defined in this Procedure, in a transparent, responsible, and ethical manner.
- To protect whistleblowers who submit reports in good faith, from Detrimental Action.
This Procedure applies to:
- All employees of ISKL (including academic, administrative, contract, and part-time staff).
- Students, parents, and alumni.
- Interns and independent contractors.
- Vendors (including suppliers, service providers, contractors, consultants, and agencies).
- Official visitors.
- Any other stakeholder as deemed applicable and appropriate by ISKL.
This Procedure covers all reports of Improper Conduct by a Whistleblower in accordance with the procedures set out herein. Reports may be made by any stakeholder who has knowledge of an Improper Conduct committed by another stakeholder.
This Procedure is not the appropriate avenue to channel private grievances, including personal complaints about individuals, the school, or employment matters. These types of concerns are governed under separate ISKL policies or procedures.
Confidential Information means any information that is sensitive and confidential by nature, and not generally available to the public. This includes, but is not limited to the following:
- Information about the identity, position, or other personal details of a Whistleblower.
- A person against whom a Whistleblower has made a report or disclosure under this Procedure.
- Information reported or disclosed by a Whistleblower under this Procedure.
- Information that, if disclosed, may cause detriment or harm to others.
Detrimental Action means any retaliatory action against a Whistleblower as a result of a report made by the Whistleblower. This could include, as applicable, unfair dismissal, demotion, suspension, victimization, intimidation, discrimination, harassment, any action causing injury, loss, or damage, or any other retaliatory actions.
Employee refers to faculty or staff who are hired by ISKL and (solely for purposes of this Procedure) includes, contract staff, individual consultants, temporary employees, and interns.
Improper Conduct means any conduct, which if proven, constitutes a criminal offense or any conduct that constitutes a wrongdoing or malpractice and may include, without limitation:
- Breaches of any law, regulation, guidelines, or rule that is applicable to ISKL.
- Commission of fraud, bribery, corruption, theft, unauthorized disclosure of confidential information of ISKL.
- Any actions that would cause significant harm and/or pose safety risks to ISKL or to its stakeholders.
- Abuse of power and position which causes detriment to ISKL.
- Unauthorised use of funds detrimental to the interest of ISKL.
- Intentional misrepresentation of ISKL’s financial statements.
- Any action taken against a person in retaliation for whistleblowing.
- Any other violation of ethical conduct or integrity that breaches ISKL’s Code of Conduct, Administrative Regulations and/or policies.
Stakeholder means the individuals referred to in the Scope.
Whistleblower means a person that makes a report of Improper Conduct in good faith under this Procedure.
ACTING IN GOOD FAITH
- Any person making an allegation of Improper Conduct must have reasonable and probable grounds for reporting such Improper Conduct, and must be acting in good faith, with the best interest of ISKL in mind.
- Making a report in good faith means that a person must have reasonable and probable grounds before reporting any Improper Conduct, and must make such a report with the best interest of ISKL in mind, and not for personal gain.
- Whether or not a report of Improper Conduct is made in good faith is subject entirely to the determination of ISKL. Non-exhaustive factors which may be considered include the following:
- Whether there is personal knowledge or any basis for the report of Improper Conduct.
- Whether the report is made with malice, is false, frivolous, for personal gain and/or with ulterior motives.
- Any person that has not acted in good faith shall not be entitled to any protection under this Procedure.
- Employees who have made reports in the absence of good faith will be subject to disciplinary action which may result in the termination of employment. Furthermore, ISKL fully reserves its right to pursue legal action against any individuals who have made reports in the absence of good faith, where applicable.
PROTECTION AGAINST DETRIMENTAL ACTION
- If applicable, an Employee or any individual who makes a report of Improper Conduct in good faith shall not be subject to any Detrimental Action.
- An individual who makes a report of Improper Conduct in good faith and who is thereafter subject to Detrimental Action may lodge a complaint to the Audit Committee.
- If substantiated, any Employee found to have taken Detrimental Action against a Whistleblower shall be subject to disciplinary or any other corrective action as deemed appropriate in the circumstances.
- Protection against any Detrimental Action will only be applicable to the extent it is within the control of ISKL.
PROTECTION OF CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION
- A person with knowledge of an Improper Conduct within the course of the investigation will use its best efforts to maintain the confidentiality of the same, including the Whistleblower’s identity.
- There may be instances whereby it is necessary to disclose the identity of the Whistleblower during the investigation. ISKL will endeavor to obtain the consent of the Whistleblower prior to doing so. Please understand that any restriction to the disclosure of certain information may inhibit or limit the investigation.
- ISKL shall implement all reasonable steps as is practicable to safeguard and maintain the confidentiality of Confidential Information. Confidential Information shall only be disclosed to those who are authorized to carry out or are part of the investigation into the allegations made in the report.
- The Whistleblower must also make all reasonable effort to maintain the confidentiality of the Confidential Information, so as not to jeopardize the investigation.
WHEN PROTECTION MAY NOT BE APPLICABLE / AVAILABLE
- Protection against Detrimental Action under this Procedure may not be applicable to the Whistleblower in the following circumstances:
- If the report of Improper Conduct is not made in good faith.
- If the Whistleblower has been found to have participated in the Improper Conduct reported.
- The report of Improper Conduct is made solely or substantially with the motive of avoiding dismissal or other disciplinary action.
- The Whistleblower breaches their obligations of confidentiality under this Procedure.
- ISKL has no power to provide any immunity from criminal prosecution. There are also instances whereby ISKL would not have any power to grant protection against Detrimental Action to a Whistleblower who is not an Employee or a student.
- Anonymous reports are generally discouraged as any follow-up to ascertain further information or to verify facts would be extremely challenging.
- Although ISKL is not expected to address any anonymous allegations, it may, however, consider investigating an anonymous allegation after having considered the circumstances of the situation, including:
- The seriousness of the report/allegation.
- The credibility of the report.
- The likelihood of confirming the report or facts from credible sources.
- Disclosure or report of Improper Conduct can be submitted to The International School of Kuala Lumpur by fully completing the ‘Form for the Report of Improper Conduct’ (“Report”), and then emailing a copy of the same to [email protected]
- If the Report is in relation to the Head of School, it will immediately be brought to the attention of the Board’s Executive Committee who is then under an obligation to bring it to the Board’s attention for investigation and deliberation.
- If the Report is in relation to any of the Audit Committee members, the said member will be excluded from the Audit Committee for purposes of the investigation.
- The reporting procedure is outlined as follows: