Complaints and Grievances
DCE’s aim is to strive for excellence and to provide a high standard of teaching and services to all students. If you feel that we have failed in this, we would like to hear from you. We commit to responding to any complaints quickly and fairly. When you make a complaint:
- We will answer you within one week of receiving your complaint.
- If you are not happy, you may request a more detailed response, and you will receive this within one more week.
- If necessary and appropriate, we will arrange a meeting between you and the staff member you are complaining about. If you prefer, you may also meet with the Director of Studies or the Director (if you are complaining about the Director of Studies).
- If you are not satisfied with the outcome of the complaint, you may appeal to the board of management. They will discuss the issue, and you will receive a response within one week of appeal. We will also provide information on how to take the complaint further if you are still unhappy.
What constitutes a complaint/grievance?
Examples of things that could go wrong that you may need to complain about include, but are not limited to:
- Unprofessional behaviour by a member of staff
- Bullying or victimisation
- Unfair treatment in class or when marking class tests
- Failure to uphold school rules
- Issues with school equipment or resources
The following are NOT good reasons to complain, and will NOT be taken seriously:
- Not allowing you to enter or sign the attendance list when you are late
- Requiring you to speak English at all times, or asking you to leave if you don’t
- Requiring you to have your school textbook with you in class
- The teacher’s gender, orientation, disability, race, nationality, family status, civil status, religious beliefs, age, or membership of the Traveller community
How do I make a complaint?
- First, you should talk to the person concerned. For example, if you’re not happy with something your teacher does in class, you should speak to the teacher.
- They will be happy to change things, or will be able to explain to you why the activity is necessary to do.
- You can meet the Director of Studies to talk about your complaint.
- You can email your complaint to firstname.lastname@example.org
- You can fill in the Complaint Form, which is available from Reception
How will DCE deal with my complaint?
- First, we will talk to the person involved in the complaint. We will do this within 3 days of receiving your complaint.
- The Director of Studies may meet with you to discuss your complaint further.
- We will make every possible effort to resolve your complaint as soon as possible.
- We will arrange any necessary meetings in order to reach a resolution.
- We will then make a decision, and do one of these things:
- Decide that your complaint is unfounded, and explain why
- Propose a solution
- Uphold your complaint, offer an apology or other recompense, and create a plan of action to prevent any further problems
- You will receive a response to your complaint by email or in writing.
All complaints are recorded and will be kept in the school for at least 3 years.Please note that if we find out that a false complaint has been made maliciously, where your intention was to cause trouble for a member of staff, we may begin disciplinary procedures. The level of discipline will depend on the following:
- The severity of your complaint and the amount of trouble the staff member could have been in
- The evidence we have that your complaint was not true
- Your record of behaviour prior to the complaint
- Whether there are any mitigating circumstances
In serious cases, malicious complaints could lead to legal action being taken against you for defamation. This is especially true if you take your complaint onto social media before or while it is investigated by DCE.