Who can make a complaint?
This complaints procedure is not limited to parents or carers of children that are registered at the
school. Any person, including members of the public, may make a complaint to Barlow, Burton
Salmon & Chapel Haddlesey Primary Schools Federation about any provision of facilities or
services that we provide. Unless complaints are dealt with under separate statutory procedures
(such as appeals relating to exclusions or admissions), we will use this complaints procedure.
The difference between a concern and a complaint
A concern may be defined as ‘an expression of worry or doubt over an issue considered to be
important for which reassurances are sought’.
A complaint may be defined as ‘an expression of dissatisfaction however made, about actions taken
or a lack of action’.
It is in everyone’s interest that concerns and complaints are resolved at the earliest possible stage.
Many issues can be resolved informally, without the need to use the formal stages of the complaints
procedure. Barlow, Burton Salmon & Chapel Haddlesey Primary Schools Federation takes concerns
seriously and will make every effort to resolve the matter as quickly as possible.
If you have difficulty discussing a concern with a particular member of staff, we will respect your
views. In these cases, Mrs MacDonald, Executive Headteacher, will refer you to another staff
member. Similarly, if the member of staff directly involved feels unable to deal with a concern, Mrs
MacDonald will refer you to another staff member. The member of staff may be more senior but
does not have to be. The ability to consider the concern objectively and impartially is more
We understand however, that there are occasions when people would like to raise their concerns
formally. In this case, Barlow, Burton Salmon & Chapel Haddlesey Primary Schools Federation will
attempt to resolve the issue internally, through the stages outlined within this complaints procedure.
How to raise a concern or make a complaint
A concern or complaint can be made in person, in writing or by telephone. They may also be made
by a third party acting on behalf on a complainant, as long as they have appropriate consent to do
Concerns should be raised with either the class teacher or headteacher. If the issue remains
unresolved, the next step is to make a formal complaint.
Complainants should not approach individual governors to raise concerns or complaints. They have
no power to act on an individual basis and it may also prevent them from considering complaints at
Stage 2 of the procedure.
Complaints against school staff (except the headteacher) should be made in the first instance, to
Mrs MacDonald, Executive Headteacher, via the school office. Please mark them as Private and
Complaints that involve or are about the headteacher should be addressed to Mrs Jenny Brown or
Mr Chris Taperell (Co-Chair of Governors), via the school office. Please mark them as Private and
Complaints about the Chair of Governors, any individual governor or the whole governing body
should be addressed to Miss Edwards (the Clerk to the Governing Body) via the school office.
Please mark them as Private and Confidential.
For ease of use, a template complaint form is included at the end of this procedure. If you require
help in completing the form, please contact the school office. You can also ask third party
organisations like the Citizens Advice to help you.
In accordance with equality law, we will consider making reasonable adjustments if required, to
enable complainants to access and complete this complaints procedure. For instance, providing
information in alternative formats, assisting complainants in raising a formal complaint or holding
meetings in accessible locations.
We will not normally investigate anonymous complaints. However, the headteacher or Chair of
Governors, if appropriate, will determine whether the complaint warrants an investigation.
You must raise the complaint within three months of the incident or, where a series of associated
incidents have occurred, within three months of the last of these incidents. We will consider
complaints made outside of this time frame if exceptional circumstances apply.
Complaints received outside of term time
We will consider complaints made outside of term time to have been received on the first school day
after the holiday period.