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Making a complaint

At Valentine Primary School, we aim to ensure that all parental issues are dealt with in a timely, courteous manner. 

As per the complaints policy (accessible below) we have a complaints 'command chain' which we expect parents and carers to follow, in order to quickly resolve your concern.


A Concern or 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. Schools take concerns seriously and will make every effort to resolve the matter as quickly as possible.


Escalation of Concerns/Complaint

Parent expresses dissatisfaction and want to talk to the school

Speaks to Class Teacher

Class Teacher records concerns on the proforma – issue is hopefully resolved.

Parent is still unhappy having spoken to the classteacher.

Escalates to Year Leader

Year Leader records the conversation on the proforma including next steps – issue is hopefully resolved.

Parent makes a formal complaint to the school

Escalated to Deputy Headteacher of phase.

DHT investigates and responds with a letter to the parent outlining the steps taken to move forward.

Parent is still unhappy with the outcome from the Deputy Headteacher

Escalates to Head Teacher

HT invites the parent in – recorded on the proforma - responds with a letter to the parent outlining the steps taken to move forward.

Parent unhappy with outcome from Headteacher - escalates to Executive Headteacher

Executive Headteacher meets with the parent and those involved to seek resolution. A written outcome to the parent follows.

Escalates to Co-Chairs of Governing Body

In extreme circumstances, the CoG or a representative will meet with the parent. A hearing will take place with a written outcome.


Submitting a complaint to the Headteacher

If after following the complaints guidance, and having met with the relevant personnel, you are still unhappy - you should submit a letter in writing to the Headteacher.

You will receive notification of Mr Summerton receiving your complaint and a timescale for ensuring that this is responded to. Typically, parents should receive notification of receiving the complaint within 48 hours of this being handed in.


Making a complaint to Ofsted

A reminder to parents that complaints to Ofsted are usually only received by the CAS (Complaints Against Schools) team if the complainant shows that they have utilised the school's published complaints procedure. 

If Ofsted do look into the complaint, they will ask for your permission to share details with the school related to the complaint and for the school or local authority to investigate.  A reminder that Ofsted do not investigate complaints.

HMI (Her Majesty's Inspectors) will then review the complaint and decide whether or not this warrants further investigation.