As a member of the Pre-school Learning Alliance we aim to provide the highest quality education and
care for all our children. We aim to welcome each individual child and family and to provide a warm and caring environment within which all children can learn and develop as they play.
We believe children and their families are entitled to expect courtesy and prompt, careful attention to their needs and wishes. Our intention is to work in partnership with parents and the community generally and we welcome suggestions on how to improve our group at any time. Many concerns can be quickly resolved by an informal approach to the appropriate member of staff. If this does not achieve the desired results, the following procedures should be used.
How to complain
A parent who is uneasy about any aspect of the group’s provision should first of all talk over any worries and anxieties with the Playgroup Manager or Committee Chair
If this does not have a satisfactory outcome within a couple of weeks or if the problem recurs, the parent should put the concerns or complaints in writing to the Playgroup Committee Chair or Playgroup Manager. If required, a complaint form can be obtained from staff or committee members.
The next stage is to request a meeting with the Playgroup Manager and the Playgroup Committee Chair. If required, both parent complainant and playgroup member should have a friend or partner present and an agreed written record of the discussion should be made.
Most complaints should be resolved informally or at this initial stage.
If the matter is still not sorted out to the parent’s satisfaction, the parent should again contact the Chair. At this point, if the parent and group cannot reach an agreement, it might be helpful to invite an external mediator, one who is acceptable to both parties, to listen to both sides and offer advice. A mediator has no legal power but can help to define the problem, review the action so far and suggest further ways in which it might be solved.
Staff or volunteers within the Pre-school Learning Alliance (Tel 01954 232327) will be available to act as a mediator if both parties wish it. The mediator will keep all discussions confidential. S/he will meet with the group if requested and will keep an agreed written record of any meetings that are held and of any advice given. The involvement of a mediator represents the final stage in the complaints procedure.
The role of the registering authority
In some circumstances, it will be necessary to bring in the registering body, which has a duty to ensure laid down requirements are adhered to and with whom the PLA works in partnership to encourage high standards. The registering authority would be involved if a child appeared to be at risk or where there seemed to be a possible breach of registration requirements. In these cases both parent and playgroup would be informed and the PLA fieldworker would work with the registering body to ensure a proper investigation of the complaint followed by appropriate action. Parents may approach Ofsted directly at any stage of this complaints procedure. In addition, where there seems to be a possible breach of the setting’s registration requirements, it is essential to involve Ofsted as the registering and inspection body with a duty to ensure the National Standards for Day Care are adhered to.
To contact our local Ofsted office:
These details are also displayed on our setting’s notice board.
We believe that most complaints are made constructively and can be sorted out at an early stage. We also believe that it is in the best interest of the playgroup and parents, that complaints should be taken seriously and dealt with fairly and in a way which respects confidentiality. Complaints and the outcomes of these complaints will be recorded in a record book. We will aim to resolve complaints within 28 days.