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Complaints about schools

Procedure for complaining about educational concerns

All schools are required to have a procedure to deal with any complaints relating to the school or any community facilities or services that the school provides.  You are entitled to request a copy of this procedure.

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Local Resolution (Stage 1)

If you have a complaint about your child’s learning or welfare in school your child’s class teacher or head of year is the best person to talk to first.

Complaining to the Head (Stage 2)

If you are not satisfied with their response, you can talk to the Head or you may wish to make a formal written complaint to the Head.

Complaining to the Chair of Governors (Stage 3) 

If you are not satisfied with the response of the headteacher or the complaint is about the headteacher, you should write to the Chair of Governors to request that your complaint is considered further.

Complaining to the Governing Board (Stage 4)

If your complaint is not resolved the next stage is to approach the governing board of your child’s school.  All complaints to the governing board must be in writing.  The governing board may need to have a special governors’ complaints panel to discuss your complaint.  The school complaint policy will set out the process and procedures the school has agreed to follow.

If you believe that your school’s governing board has acted unreasonably you can complain to the Secretary of State in the Department for Education.

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

Telephone: 0370 000 2288

Website: Department for Education

Note:  The Department for Education do not usually investigate concerns if your child no longer attends the school where the incident took place.

If your child attends a Church School, please also refer to the following websites:

Please note that some educational matters have a separate procedure or appeal process and are not dealt with by the school.

For advice and guidance on how to complain about the following services please see the Together for Families complaints page.

  • School admissions
  • School transport
  • Special educational needs
  • Children’s social work
  • Complaints about the curriculum; collective worship or religious education
  • Disapplication of the National Curriculum (does not apply to academies)