The complaints policy is intended to set out how Releasing Potential deals with its complaints about administration or education. All members of the Releasing Potential community should feel able to express their views in the full knowledge that they are dealt with fairly.
We welcome suggestions for improving our work. All concerns or complaints are important to us and are investigated with due urgency and thoroughness. Our primary concern is the education and welfare of children and young people.
Whenever a complaint is upheld, every effort is made to rectify the issue and if necessary action is taken to try to prevent a recurrence of the problem. Releasing Potential does not investigate anonymous complaints or allegations.
– To provide an accessible and easily understood procedure for complaints
– To encourage parents and social workers from the placing authority and members of the Releasing Potential community to express their views at the earliest opportunity, through the appropriate channels
– To increase mutual understanding between all parties
– To create an ethos where all are committed to working together for the benefit of each child or young person.
Whether a complaint is made informally or formally all parties involved should ensure that every effort is made to respect confidentially and ensure that all documentation remains confidential to those parties directly involved in the complaint being investigated. Parents/Support Workers/Carers/Social Workers should be assured that making a complaint does not adversely affect the young person.
4 How we manage our Concerns and Complaints
4.1 Stage 1: Informal complaint
The vast majority of concerns and complaints can be resolved informally. There are many occasions where concerns are resolved straight away through direct contact with the tutor. We aim to resolve any informal complaint within one working day. If the person first contacted cannot deal with the matter immediately they refer to the person with responsibility for the particular issue raised. This person will continue to follow the issue through until it has been fully addressed and the matter is resolved either at a face-to-face meeting or by telephone.
On certain issues the tutor may decide to deal with the concerns directly at this stage. If the concern relates to the tutor, the complainant is advised to contact the Senior Executive Officer. Where no satisfactory solution has been found, complainants are asked whether they wish their concern to be considered further. If so they are given clear information about how to make a formal complaint as outlined in the complaints policy.
A written record is made by the person dealing with the informal complaint and kept in a file in the office. A copy may be kept in file of young person if relevant.
4.2 Stage 2: Appeal to the CEO
The complainant makes a written appeal to the CEO detailing the original complaint and reasons why they remain unsatisfied after SEO’s investigation. The CEO writes to the complainant to acknowledge receipt within 5 working days.
The CEO investigates the complaint by speaking with relevant parties and reviewing documents. The CEO will confer with two or more other Trustees if necessary, and will make a decision.
The CEO will write to the complainant to advise them of the outcome and any actions arising. In the case of a complaint against the SEO or CEO, the final recourse will be to the Chair of Trustees.
A record will be kept of all complaints.
Regardless of whether the complaint is upheld or not, a review of working practices will be held to determine what action needs to be taken to reduce the risk of this happening in future.
4.3 Stage 3: Appeal to Independent Panel
The complainant makes a written appeal via the Chair of Trustees to the Independent Complaints Panel, detailing the original complaint and reasons why they remain unsatisfied after the CEO’s investigation. The Chair of Trustees writes to the complainant to acknowledge receipt within 10 working days.
The Chair of Trustees contacts the Chair of the Independent Panel who will then convene a Panel consisting of at least 3 members of the local education community. The Chair of the Panel will contact the complainant and formally invite them to attend the Panel meeting.
The Panel investigates the complaint by speaking with relevant parties and reviewing documents, and will make a decision.
The Chair of the Panel will write to the complainant to advise them of the outcome and any actions arising. This letter will also advise that there is no further recourse to appeal the decision of the Independent Panel.
The complainant has the right to be accompanied by a friend or family member at all meetings arising from their complaint.
Confidential records of all complaints, their investigations and outcomes will be kept at Releasing Potential Head Office, 7 Kingscroft Court, Ridgway, Havant, PO9 1LS.
*Chair of Independent Complaints Panel is Josie Payne, Deputy Head Teacher, Prospect School, Havant
If you would like to see a copy of our complaints flowchart, click here.
Havant School Site:
Releasing Potential School
7 Kingcroft Court
Charity No: 1097440
DfE number: 850-6093
Chichester School Site:
Releasing Potential School
4 St James' Works
© Releasing Potential 2017