Making a Complaint (10.12)

At Reepham Nursery School, we believe that children and parents are entitled to expect courtesy and prompt, careful attention to their needs and wishes. We welcome suggestions on how to improve our setting and will give prompt and serious attention to any concerns about the running of the setting. We anticipate that most concerns will be resolved quickly, by an informal approach to the appropriate member of staff. If this does not achieve the desired result, we have a set of procedures for dealing with concerns. We aim to bring all concerns about the running of our setting to a satisfactory conclusion for all of the parties involved.

Our Complaints Policy is issued to all families as part of the registration process.  It is also available via our website: a copy of this policy is also displayed on our notice board.

Where parents/carers are not satisfied that their child is receiving the free entitlement in the correct way (as set out in this funding agreement and in Early Education and Childcare Statutory guidance for local authorities), a complaint can be submitted directly to Christine Long (Nursery Manager)


All settings are required to keep a ‘summary log’ of all complaints that reach stage two or beyond. This is to be made available to parents as well as to Ofsted inspectors. A full procedure is set out in the Pre-school Learning Alliance publication Summary Complaints Record which acts as the ‘summary log’ for this purpose.

Making a Complaint – Stage 1

  • Any parent who has a concern about an aspect of the setting’s provision talks over, first of all, his/her concerns with a Nursery Lead Practitioner, Christine Long.
  • Most complaints should be resolved amicably and informally at this stage.

Making a Complaint – Stage 2

  • If this does not have a satisfactory outcome, or if the problem recurs, the parent moves to this stage of the procedure by putting the concerns or complaint in writing to the Nursery School Lead Practitioner and/or the Chair of the Nursery Schools Management Committee.
  • For parents who are not comfortable with making written complaints, there is a template form for recording complaints in the above-mentioned publication; the form may be completed with the person in charge and signed by the parent.
  • The Nursery school stores written complaints from Parents/Carers, in the child’s personal file. However, if the complaint involves a detailed investigation, then all information relating to the investigation will be kept in a separate file designated for this complaint.
  • When the investigation into the complaint is completed, a Nursery Lead Practitioner/s will meet with the parent/carer to discuss the outcome.
  • Parents must be informed of the outcome of the investigation within 28 days of making the complaint.
  • When the complaint is resolved at this stage, the summative points are logged in the Complaints Summary Record.

Making a Complaint – Stage 3

  • If the parent is not satisfied with the outcome of the investigation, he or she will be offered a meeting with a Nursery Lead Practitioners and the Chair of the Management Committee. The parent should have a friend or partner present if required and the Nursery Lead Practitioner should have the support of the other Nursery Lead Practitioner.
  • An agreed written record of the discussion is made as well as any decision or action to take as a result. All of the parties present at the meeting sign the record and receive a copy of it.
  • This signed record signifies that the procedure has concluded. When the complaint is resolved at this stage, the summative points are logged in the Complaints Summary Record.

Making a Complaint – Stage 4

  • If at the stage three meeting the Parent and Nursery School cannot reach agreement, an external professional is invited to help to settle the complaint. This person should be acceptable to both parties, listen to both sides and offer advice. A mediator has no legal powers but can help to define the problem, review the action so far and suggest further ways in which the situation might be resolved.
  • Staff or volunteers within the Pre-school Learning Alliance are appropriate persons to be invited to act as mediators.
  • The mediator keeps all discussions confidential. S/he can hold separate meetings with the setting personnel (Nursery Lead Practitioner and Chair of the Management Committee) and the parent, if this is decided to be helpful. The mediator keeps an agreed written record of any meetings that are held and of any advice s/he gives.

Making a Complaint – Stage 5

  • When the mediator has concluded her/his investigations, a final meeting between the parent, the Nursery School Lead Practitioner and Chair of the Management Committee is held. The purpose of this meeting is to reach a decision on the action to be taken to deal with the complaint. The mediator’s advice is used to reach this conclusion. The mediator is present at the meeting if all parties think this will help a decision to be reached.
  • A record of this meeting, including the decision on the action to be taken, is made. Everyone present at the meeting signs the record and receives a copy of it.  This signed record signifies that the procedure has concluded.

The role of the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) and the Local Safeguarding Children Board

  • Parents may approach Ofsted directly at any stage of this complaints procedure. In addition, where there seems to be a possible breach of the Nursery Schools registration requirements, it is essential to involve Ofsted as the registering and inspection body with a duty to ensure the Welfare Requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage are adhered to.
  • The number to call Ofsted with regard to a complaint is: 0300 123 4666
  • These details are displayed on our setting’s notice board.
  • If a child appears to be at risk, our setting follows the procedures of the Local Safeguarding Children Board in our local authority.
  • In these cases, both the parent and the Nursery School are informed and the Nursery Lead Practitioner works with Ofsted or the Local Safeguarding Children Board to ensure a proper investigation of the complaint, followed by appropriate action


  • A record of complaints against our setting and/or the children and/or the adults working in our setting is kept, including the date, the circumstances of the complaint and how the complaint was managed.

The outcome of all complaints is recorded in the Summary Complaints Record which is available for parents and Ofsted inspectors on request.

Our procedure for dealing with a concern about how personal information is handled, if it is wrong, lost or shared without consent.

If you have a concern about the way our organisation is handling your information – of you are concerned that it :

  • is not keeping your information secure
  • holds inaccurate information about you
  • has disclosed information about you
  • is keeping information about you for longer than is necessary or
  • has collected information for one reason and is using it for something else,

As with any complaint, Reepham Nursery School will take your concerns seriously and for with you to try and resolve the issue.

Please out your concerns in writing to the nursery manager. A template for submitting your concern can be downloaded from

This Policy was adopted at a meeting of:  Reepham Nursery School
Held in:  November 2016
Amended:  June 2019
Date to be reviewed:   June 2020
Signed on behalf of the management committee:  Rachael Jones – Chairperson.