Page 3 of 8
Making a complaint to the Department should only happen once other routes have been followed. The exception to this may be where there is a child protection concern, or where a child is missing education.
For the Secretary of State to intervene in a maintained school following a complaint, he needs to be sure either that:
The Secretary of State will consider complaints similar to those made about maintained schools and may include where:
The Secretary of State is not required to intervene in every case that is brought to his attention but he must always consider whether, in light of the information provided to him by a complainant, he should exercise his powers.
The Secretary of State cannot intervene just because he would have made a different decision to that of the school and will only do so where he is of the view that there is some practical value or worth or purpose to be served in doing so.
The Secretary of State may consider other options to intervention to help you to resolve a complaint if appropriate, for example it may be possible to resolve the issue by agreement.
When making a complaint you should provide copies of any documentation you have about the complaint. This will help to investigate your case.
You can send your complaint through our online form, or by post, or by email. The complaints form can be used to make a complaint about a maintained school, academy, Free School, university technical school or studio school. If you don’t know what type of school you are complaining about, then please provide the full name and address of the school to help us identify its type.
If we believe that your complaint should be dealt with by another organisation or department, we will ask your permission to send your complaint to the relevant body. Complaints relating to academies will be handled by the Education Funding Agency (EFA) as part of the Department. Complaints that concern a child with special educational needs (SEN) will be handled by the specialist SEN team.
The process of making a complaint is summarised in a flow chart which you can download from the associated resources section below.
Page 3 of 8