How to review your complaints procedures: checklist, model and examples

Use our checklist to review the procedure for your school or trust, and make sure it complies with the law and reflects best practice. Be clear on what questions you can ask, and take a look at our model procedure to see what good looks like.

Last reviewed on 18 January 2023See updates
Ref: 38473
Statutory/mandatory for:
Maintained schools
Academies
Free schools
Independent schools
Pupil referral units
Non-maintained special schools
Contents
  1. Key facts
  2. Key statutes, guidance and documents
  3. What this procedure needs to do 
  4. 2 key questions to challenge the procedure
  5. Use our checklist to scrutinise your procedure
  6. Model procedure from The Key 
  7. Academy examples
  8. MAT examples

Key statutes, guidance and documents

What this procedure needs to do 

Your complaints procedure must consist of at least 3 stages:

  1. Informal (usually a meeting with the complainant)
  2. Formal (the complaint is put in writing)
  3. A panel hearing

The procedure should also state that the panel won't be made up solely of trustees because they aren't independent of the management and running of the academy. 

Details of how you'll deal with complaints from people who aren't parents of current pupils. You may use the same procedure you use for complaints

The Key has taken great care in publishing this article. However, some of the article's content and information may come from or link to third party sources whose quality, relevance, accuracy, completeness, currency and reliability we do not guarantee. Accordingly, we will not be held liable for any use of or reliance placed on this article's content or the links or downloads it provides. This article may contain information sourced from public sector bodies and licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.