The Complaints Procedure 2019/2020
Purpose of the Procedure
The Learning Enterprise (TLE) has a staged complaints procedure which aims to resolve concerns swiftly and fairly. The purpose of the procedure is to investigate complaints in a way that:
- encourages informal resolution of issues and concerns if possible
- is fair and equitable
- treats complaints with appropriate seriousness
- use outcomes to improve the learner journey for our apprentices
Scope & Responsibility
This procedure covers complaints relating to:
• any TLE policy, procedure or process
• academic and support services or facilities
• the conduct or actions of a TLE member of staff
• misleading or inaccurate information regarding academic programmes, fees, services or facilities
This procedure is not used for:
• complaints about academic judgements, examination decisions, academic appeals or assessment outcomes
• appeals against disciplinary actions
• whistle blowing
TLE uses the following definitions specific to this procedure:
• a complaint is the expression of a specific concern
• ‘days’ refers to Monday – Friday
• timescales specified will be adhered to wherever possible but may be extended during seasonal holiday periods. On these occasions the complainant will be notified
Complaints should be made as soon as possible after the events or actions (or omission of actions) which have prompted the complaint. TLE will not normally consider complaints that are made more than 30 working days after the incident or event complained about. In exceptional circumstances, a complaint may be considered outside this timeline.
A complainant may be invited for a meeting as part of any investigation relating to the complaint and may be accompanied by a parent/carer, employer or other representative. Details of any support needs to be declared prior to any meeting by the complainant.
TLE will make reasonable adjustments, where necessary, to ensure that the complaints procedure is fair, equitable and accessible to all.
Where it is inappropriate or not possible for an Apprentice or other stakeholder to make a complaint, this may be done on their behalf by another person, who has a legitimate interest in the complaint and has the complainant’s knowledge and written consent. That interest must be made clear to the investigating officer.
Records will securely be held on TLE’s system.
The complaints procedure is required to allow apprentices, assessor, internal and external quality assurers and relevant stakeholders to challenge an appropriate aspect of the centres operation.
If a person wishes to complain, the complaint is lodged with the Head of Apprenticeships within 30 days of the issue arising.
In the first instance the Head of Apprenticeships will
- investigate complaint or appoint investigating officer
- notify Quality Lead (TLE)of complaint and resolution and learning shared
- keep detail records of all parts of investigation
If a complaint remains unresolved then Head of Apprenticeship must instigate next steps to appeal procedure
The Appeals Procedure
The Appeals Procedure is to allow apprentices who are registered with TLE to challenge the outcome of the compliant this must be lodged with the Head of Apprenticeships within 20 days of notification of investigation and decision
The outcomes of the appeal may be:
• Confirmation of the original decision
• Instructions that the competence be re-assessed by the same or a different assessor
• A judgement that the evidence presented is an adequate demonstration of competence and a recommendation that the assessment decision be reconsidered
The appeals panel (Quality Assurance Subcommittee) will be small and constituted so as to be objective and independent
The Head of Apprenticeship will:
- Inform the Quality Assurance Subcommittee (the appeals panel) of complaint within 20 days of start of formal stage
- The subcommittee will ensure that it has full account from all parties involved in the assessment
- No one involved in the original investigation will be on the subcommittee
- Notify the outcome of the subcommittee decision to the apprentice and or appropriate representative.
TLE provides a system to support those making the complaint and the complaint documentation should be as simple as possible and should preferably a pre-printed form.
If the complaint remains unresolved after appeal, TLE can provide the appropriate external contact, including awarding organisation or funding body details, in order for an external appeal to be made.
Contact should be made to apprenticeships@VirginCare.co.uk for relevant details. Before this is done, all stages of the Complaints Procedure must have been exhausted.
Apprentices can take advice and support from TLE either prior to making a complaint or during the complaints process at:
Jacqueline Smart, Director of Learning Operations, The Learning Enterprise, Virgin Care, Farnham Hospital, Hele Road, Surrey, GU9 9QL