Complaints and Comments
Your school would like to hear from you if you:
are happy with the service it provides and would like to compliment the staff and its pupils
have any suggestions about how the school can improve the quality of its provision
have a complaint or concern. All complaints will be taken seriously and given full and proper consideration.
When things go well, it is very helpful if parents express their approval. Maintenance of high levels of staff commitment, morale and motivation are essential to the provision of the best education for your child. Positive feedback really helps.
To express your approval you can write, telephone, e-mail or speak personally to staff concerned or the headteacher. Your words will be appreciated.
Your child's school is committed to providing a high quality service for your child. Sometimes things may seem to go wrong which may lead you to express concerns.
Any concerns should be raised with the member of staff concerned or the headteacher in the first instance. If the headteacher considers it appropriate another member of staff may be asked to respond because they have a particular responsibility or are familiar with the circumstances that have caused you concern. We hope that this would be sufficient to resolve the difficulty.
Making a Formal Complaint
If it has not been possible to resolve a concern informally then you can ask to use the formal complaints procedure. Every school is required to have a policy for dealing with complaints.
Step 1 - the Headteacher
Having discussed your concerns with the headteacher the matter will, hopefully, be resolved to the satisfaction of all concerned. If this has not proved possible then each school will have a procedure for accepting formal complaints. This will, in the first instance, be made to the chair of governors either verbally or in writing. If necessary the school will provide you with a form you can choose to fill in for this purpose.
Step 2 - the Governing Body
The chair of governors will ensure that your complaint is dealt with in accordance with the school's agreed policy. The chair of governors may feel it appropriate for him/herself to investigate the complaint or decide to ask the complaints committee of the governing body to undertake a review. This should include you being given the opportunity to meet with the chair of governors, or the committee, to present your complaint in person.
You will receive a written response from the governing body.
When considering your complaint the chair of governors may seek technical or procedural advice from officers of the County Council's Directorate for Children, Young People and Families. However, you should not contact the Directorate or the Secretary of State direct until Step 2 is complete.
Step 3 - the County Council
If you think that the governors have failed to consider your complaint properly and reasonably, you can raise the matter with the Director of Children's Services, Staffordshire County Council or the Secretary of State. However, it is important to understand that this is not a general right of appeal for any parent who disagrees with the governors' decision. If the governors have followed their published procedures and considered the complaint reasonably, neither the Director nor the Secretary of State can reverse their decision.
If you wish to raise the matter with Staffordshire County Council please write to:
Director of Children's Services
Stafford ST16 2DH
In your letter please explain:
what your complaint to the governors was,
what response they have made to it,
why you think that the governors have not followed a proper procedure in considering your complaint, and/or
why you think that their consideration of it was unreasonable.
You will receive a response to inform you of the further enquiries into your complaint.
If you remain dissatisfied with how the complaint has been dealt with you may wish to refer your complaint to the Secretary of State for Education. Please write to:
The Secretary of State
Department for Education
Great Smith Street
London SW1P 3BT
Note: This procedure does not apply where the complaint may lead to disciplinary proceedings against a teacher or child protection procedures. These matters have separate procedures.