complaint POLICY

Guidance

The complaints procedure at ACE Learning has two stages, to be covered in a period of 15 days excluding school holidays and weekends between the complaint being made and the final resolution. The DfE does not distinguish between a ‘concern’ and a ‘complaint’. Any matter about which a parent of a child is unhappy and seeks action by the centre is considered as a complaint and will be addressed in accordance with this policy. In this respect, it is anticipated that the large majority of complaints will be resolved at the informal stage.

ACE Learning will keep records of complaints, which are resolved at the informal stage for management purposes, for example to enable patterns or trends to be monitored. A formal written and/or electronic record is kept of complaints made to ACE Learning, which reach the formal stage. Details will be recorded of:

  • Whether the complaint was resolved following the formal stage.
  • Action taken by ACE Learning as a result of the complaint, (regardless of whether the complaint was upheld).

Records are kept for at least three years. ACE Learning will provide Ofsted, on request, with a written record of all complaints made during any specified period, and the action, which was taken as a result of each complaint.

Stage 1 - Informal complaint (Resolution within 5 working days)

All complaints may be made on an informal basis initially; verbally or in writing. Sections A-F deal with any informal complaints. In many instances issues will be dealt with straight away. Where further information is required every effort will be made to make an initial response within 24 hours of the issue being raised.

A) Complaints by parents about a member of staff:

  1. Direct discussion with parents and ACE Learning management
  2. Direct discussion with member of staff followed by conversation between member of staff and parents and aggrieved parties
  3. Action on points raised agreed
  4. Review situation

B) Complaints by parents about another child:

  1. Relevant tutor/staff involved immediately.
  2. All relevant tutors/staff are informed at staff meetings for classroom awareness.
  3. "Complaining" parents telephoned; procedures explained; offered opportunity to talk further and asked to telephone immediately with any further/future concerns.
  4. In instances of bullying the procedure is outlined in our anti-bullying policy
  5. Where necessary steps will be taken in accordance with the relevant policy and could result in expulsion.

C) Complaints by a child about a child:

  1. All parties are separately seen by staff, as a fact collecting exercise.
  2. Tutor/staff is informed in staff meetings.
  3. Parents are informed
  4. In instances of bullying the procedure is outlined in our anti-bullying policy
  5. Where necessary, steps will be taken in accordance with the relevant policy and could result in expulsion. 

D) Complaint by a member of staff about a colleague:

This is usually made to the ACE Learning managment either informally or formally

  1. Informally: the managment then discusses matter with member of staff and offers to intervene tactfully. Usually the member of staff chooses to speak to the other staff member him/herself. Senior Management Team (SMT) ensure that situations likely to cause friction/aggravation between staff concerned are avoided.

E) Complaints by former pupils

  1. This policy does not apply to complaints made by former pupils unless the complaint was first raised whilst the pupil was still registered at ACE Learning.

Stage 2 - Formal Complaint (Resolution within 10 working days)

Where the complainant(s) are not satisfied with the response of ACE Learning, through the procedures outlined above they may register a formal complaint. This should be done in writing to the SMT, including:

  1. The nature of the complaint
  2. The reasons for their dissatisfaction with the centre's response.

The SMT will meet with the complainant as soon as is practical, to discuss the matter and, if possible, to reach a resolution at this stage. Where a complaint is received during a holiday period, it will be deemed to have reached the school on the first full school day following its arrival. It may be necessary to carry out further investigations. The SMT will keep written records of all complaints, and of meetings held in relation to them.

Once the head is satisfied that all the relevant facts have been established, a response to the complaint will be made and the complainant will be informed in writing, within ten working days: the nature of the response will depend on the nature of the complaint but it will always give a judgement whether and to what extent, if at all, the complaint is justified, and reasons; the response may include actions which ACE Learning intends to take or a decision. A complainant who is not satisfied should proceed to the next stage.

safeguarding complaints

In the event of allegations of abuse or neglect by any staff member, the staff implicated shall be suspended whilst the complaint is investigated. Any complaints of this nature shall be reported to Social Services at the first instance and advice sought by them thereof. Ofsted will also be informed of any allegations of neglect/abuse made against any member of staff. 

All parents are advised to contact Ofsted in the event of any serious cause for concern. 

Key contacts:

  1. ACE Learning SMT: complaints@acelearning.org.uk
  2. Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub:
    1st Floor, Sutton Police Station
    6 Carshalton Road
    Sutton, Surrey
    SM1 4RF
    020 8649 0418/0419/0420
    Out of Hours (020 8770 5000)
    mash@sutton.gov.uk
  3. Ofsted: 0300 123 4234  or enquiries@ofsted.gov.uk