Special Education Needs

School complaints

From time to time you may be concerned about their child's education. If you're worried about your child, contact their school as soon as possible to avoid both you and your child becoming more worried about the problem.

All schools have a procedure for dealing with complaints from parents and although there are slight differences in procedure from one school to another, most schools deal with complaints in a similar way.

Parents should ask to speak to the child's class teacher (primary school) or head of year/house (secondary school) to discuss their concerns. In most cases, problems can be resolved at this stage. If the problem isn't resolved to a parent's satisfaction, they may request a meeting with the head teacher to discuss their complaint.

It may not be possible for a teacher or the head teacher to meet with a parent without notice. Parents are therefore advised to make an appointment in advance, which will allow everyone involved to devote sufficient time to discussing the problem.

After giving a head teacher reasonable time to deal with the complaint, if parents are still concerned, they may write to the school's chair of governors, who may consider the complaint themselves or refer it to the governing body's complaints committee. In most cases, parents will be given the opportunity to attend a committee meeting to talk about their concerns. The committee decides whether or not to uphold a complaint, or to uphold part of a complaint. This is the final stage in the school complaints process.

If a complaint is unresolved after the final stage and a parent feels that the school has behaved unreasonably about their concern, they can write to the Secretary of State for Education:

The Secretary of State
Department for Education
Sanctuary Buildings
Great Smith Street
London
SW1P 3BT

For further advice about the process of making a complaint about a school, please contact:

Zoe Reed
Phone: 01642 201831