This policy is for the benefit of pupils and complainants’ of pupils at the school as well as members of the public. The policy will be relied upon in respect of all concerns or complaints by complainants and pupils made against the school except in respect of;
Admissions to schools; Statutory assessments of Special Educational Needs (SEN); School re-organisation proposals; Matters likely to require Child Protection Investigation - Concerns should be raised direct with local authorities (LA). For school admissions, it will depend on who is the admission authority (either the school or the LA). Complaints about admission appeals for maintained schools are dealt with by the Local Government Ombudsman.
Exclusion of children from school - Further information about raising concerns about exclusion can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/school-discipline-exclusions
Whistleblowing – The school has an internal whistleblowing procedure for employees and voluntary staff.
Staff grievances and disciplinary procedures - These matters will invoke the school’s internal grievance procedures. Complainants will not be informed of the outcome of any investigation.
Complaints about services provided by other providers who may use school premises or facilities - Providers should have their own complaints procedure to deal with complaints about service. They should be contacted direct.
Matters likely to require a Child Protection Investigation - Complaints about child protection matters are handled under our child protection and safeguarding policy and in accordance with relevant statutory guidance. If you have serious concerns, you may wish to contact the local authority designated officer (LADO) who has local responsibility for safeguarding.
The Governing Body expects that most concerns can be resolved informally and recognises that the majority of issues raised by complainants or pupils are concerns rather than complaints. The school will use its best endeavours to resolve any concerns that are made on this basis.
The school is committed to taking concerns seriously at the earliest stage, in the hope of keeping the number of formal complaints to a minimum and without the need for formal procedures. It is recognised however that, depending on the circumstances and the nature of the complaint, complainants or pupils may, in appropriate circumstances, wish to or may be asked to follow the formal stages of this policy from the outset.
If the informal procedures fail to resolve the issue, a formal complaint about any matter (except for those listed in (a) to (e) above), may be made to the Headteacher in the first instance.
Every complaint will receive fair and proper consideration and a timely response but in order for the school to investigate a complaint, it needs to be made within 3 months of the incident/issue occurring. If a complaint is older than 3 months it will not normally be investigated.
The school will do all it can to resolve concerns or complaints and to ensure complainants are happy with the education their child receives at the school. Complainants’ and pupils can be assured that all complaints and expressions of concern, whether raised informally or formally, will be treated seriously and will be dealt with in a sensitive, impartial and confidential manner. The school will seek to resolve complaints in an open and transparent manner and acknowledge that complaints can foster opportunities for development and improvement. It should also be noted that serial or malicious complaints may incur appropriate action by the school.
We will not normally investigate anonymous complaints. However, the Headteacher or Chair of Governors, if appropriate, will determine whether the complaint warrants an investigation.
Correspondence, statements and records will remain confidential except in so far as is required by Part 7 paragraph 33 (k) of the Education (Independent Schools Standards) Regulations 2014; where disclosure is required in the course of the school’s inspection; or where any other legal obligation prevails.
It is reasonable and legal for personal information relating to the child/parent to be shared with the One Education Advisor supporting the school in responding to a parental complaint. Normal protocols in ensuring the security of that information should be observed.
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