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Complaints (Parents)

Good, positive relationships between pupils, parents, staff and Governors at Trinity Christian School are vital if we are to achieve the school’s aims. If disputes occur they will be taken seriously, dealt with promptly, and resolved in a biblical manner.

Established procedures should be followed so that disputes can be settled quickly and fairly.  Let all things be done decently and in order” (1 Corinthians 14:40)

This policy has been written with reference to guidance from the SIEF, Staff Handbook and Government Statutory Guidance (Independent Schools Standard, England, 2014). Examples of a complaint could include:

  1. Any complaint that could result in the expulsion of a pupil.
  2. Any complaint that could lead to serious disciplinary action being taken against a member of staff.

The complaints procedure is made available to parents in a number of ways:

  1. A copy of this Complaints Policy is made available to all new parents along with the Contract
  2. A copy of this Complaints Policy is made available on the school web page
  3. A copy of this Complaints Policy is made available to parents on request.
  4. The number of Stage Three complaints is recorded annually on the school’ webpage

 

Philosophy

Trinity Christian School operates as a partnership between home and the school and we value working with parents and seek to resolve all issues at an early stage. Indeed we believe that the majority of all complaints can be successfully resolved at Stage One. Nonetheless it is still recognised that there may be times when parents have concerns that need further attention.

Resolution of Complaints and Disputes 

Any person who has a complaint should follow the appropriate procedure. When problems first occur, our personality and temperament can be affected by anger. It would be appropriate to take time to “put off all these: anger, wrath, malice and put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, long-suffering: bearing with one another…” (Colossians 3:1-17)

Parental concerns:

Trinity Christian School recognises that a parent might have a concern about something that occurred in school. In this instance we encourage parents to contact the School Office to arrange a meeting with the staff member related to that concern. Alternatively, a parent might arrange to meet with the staff member by writing directly to them.

Stage One Complaint

In the event of a parent/person wishing to make a complaint, the complainant should contact the School Office to arrange a meeting with the staff member they have a complaint against. For example, a parent might want to discuss a complaint with the class/subject teacher regarding an incident that happened in class. The primary purpose of this meeting is to clarify the situation/establish the facts and give the staff member an opportunity to resolve the complaint promptly. As stated above, we value working with parents and seek to resolve all complaints at an early stage. As such, the staff member will arrange to meet with the complainant within five working days of Stage One being initiated.

Trinity Christian School is required to keep a written copy of all Stage One Complaints “ whether the complaint was upheld or not and any action that was taken to resolve the complaint.

We ask that a parent should desist from discussing their complaint with any other persons – including pupils as this can send a message of disunity.

Stage Two Complaint

If, after the Stage One meeting, a resolution is not reached, the complainant has the right to request a Stage Two meeting with the Headteacher. In this instance the complainant should make a factual written record of the complaint and send it to the Headteacher.

The Headteacher will then arrange to meet both parties (within 5 working days of the letter being received) and will aim to:

  • establish the facts leading to the complaint being upheld or not upheld
  • suggest a way forward or make a decision as to what each party should do

If an investigation is required to establish the facts of the complaint, the Headteacher will inform both parties of the outcome of that investigation and will do so within five working days of the completion of the investigation.

Trinity Christian School is required to keep a written copy of all Stage Two Complaints – whether the complaint was upheld or not and any action that was taken to resolve the complaint.

Stage Three

In the event of the complainant being dissatisfied with the outcome of the Headteacher’s decision at Stage Two, the complainant should write formally to the Chair of Governors outlining their complaint. The Chair of Governors will then form a panel to investigate the complaint and the way in which the school has handled it (and will do so within 5 working days of the letter being received). This panel must consist of at least three people, none of which should have been directly involved in the matters detailed in the complaint. Furthermore, one panel member should be someone independent of the management and running of the school. Having gathered the appropriate evidence, the panel will meet and make their conclusions and will do so within twenty working days of first being contacted by the complainant.

The decision by the panel appointed by the Chair of Governors will be the School’ final decision.

The panels findings and recommendations must be recorded in writing and sent to the complainant by electronic mail or formal letter

In the event of a complaint being made against the Headteacher the complainant should carry out Stage One and then continue to Stage Three if the issue is unresolved.

This complaints policy should also be carried out in the event of a dispute or complaint between staff at Trinity Christian School

Written records

Trinity Christian School is required to keep a written record of all complaints (whether they are upheld or not) and we record every change to school practice/policy that occurs as a result of a complaint being upheld.

All complaints are kept in a secure location and are kept available for inspection purposes

Child Protection issues.

ANY COMPLAINT PERTAINING TO CHILD PROTECTION ISSUES WILL IMMEDIATELY BE BROUGHT TO THE ATTENTION OF THE DSL.

EYFS.

This procedures in this policy are relevant for the EYFS

Confidentiality 

The reader should understand that we take confidentiality very seriously and ask that staff and parents do not discuss any complaint outside of the perimeters set by this policy.

However, it should be noted that some outside agencies (including Ofsted and other inspection agencies) do need to have access to the complaints made in school.

Child Protection issues. 

ANY COMPLAINT PERTAINING TO CHILD PROTECTION ISSUES WILL IMMEDIATELY BE BROUGHT TO THE ATTENTION OF THE CHILD PROTECTION DESIGNATED SAFEGUARDING OFFICER AND CHILD PROTECTION PROCEDURES WILL IMMEDIATELY BE APPLIED.  (See policy.)

EYFS.

Any written complaints about the fulfilment of the EYFS requirements must be investigated and the complainant notified of the outcome of the investigation within 28 days. The record of complaints will be made available to Ofsted and ISI on request.

Confidentiality 

The reader should understand that we take confidentiality very seriously and ask that staff and parents do not discuss any complaint outside of the perimeters set by this policy.

However, it should be noted that some outside agencies (including Ofsted and other inspection agencies) do need to have access to the complaints made in school.

Review Spring 2019

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Complaints:

Number of complaints that went to panel in 2013/14 – NONE

Number of complaints that went to panel in 2014/15 – NONE

Number of complaints that went to panel in 2015/16 – ONE

Number of complaints that went to panel in 2016/17 – NONE