The Limes is committed to providing a safe, stimulating, consistent and accessible service to children and young people. We always aim to provide high quality services for everyone, but accept that sometimes things do not always go to plan. In such circumstances, we want to know so that we can put them right and learn from our mistakes.

This policy constitutes the Limes’ formal Complaints procedure. It will be displayed on the Notice Board at the entrance at all times.

Under normal circumstances, the Chief Executive will be responsible for managing complaints. There may be incidences when a trustee or subcommittee is made the responsible person for managing a complaint. If a complaint is made against the Chief Executive, the Chair of the Board of Trustees will conduct the investigation. All complaints made to staff will be recorded in detail in the Incident Report Book which is kept in reception & Complaints log which is held on the server within the management folder.  To ensure access for all staff, complaints should be recorded on the paper version kept in reception.

Stage One

If a parent/carer or customer has a complaint about some aspect of the Limes’ activity, or about the conduct of an individual member of staff, it will often be possible to resolve the problem by simply speaking to the Lead worker.  All complaints (informal or formal) must be reported to The Chief Executive. The Limes is committed to open and regular dialogue with parents/carers and the Limes welcome all comments on its services, regardless of whether they are positive or negative.

In the first instance, parents/carers are encouraged to speak directly to the lead worker on services. If a satisfactory resolution cannot be found, then Stage two of the procedure will formally come into operation.

Stage Two

If informal discussion of a complaint or problem has not produced a satisfactory resolution to the situation, parents/carers should put their complaint in detail and in writing to the Chief Executive or appointed person or subcommittee. Relevant names, dates, evidence and any other important information on the nature of the complaint should be included.

The Limes will acknowledge receipt of the complaint as soon as possible – within three working days

– and fully investigate the matter within 15 working days. 

If there is any delay, the Chief Executive or appointed person/subcommittee will advise the parent/carers of this and offer an explanation. The Chief Executive or appointed person/subcommittee will be responsible for sending them a full and formal response to the complaint.

If the Chief Executive has good reason to believe that the situation has child/adult protection implications, they should inform the Designated Safeguarding Officer and ensure that the local social services department is contacted, according to the procedure set out in The Limes Safeguarding policy. If any party involved in the complaint has good reason to believe that a criminal offence has been committed, then they will contact the police.

The formal response to the complaint from the Limes will be sent to the parent/carer concerned and copied to all relevant members of staff if appropriate. The response will include recommendations for dealing with the complaint and for any amendments to the Limes’ policies and procedures emerging from the investigation.

The Chief Executive or appointed person /subcommittee will arrange a time to meet the parent/carer concerned and any other relevant individuals, such as members of staff, to discuss the complaint and the Limes’ response to it. The Chief Executive or appointed person or subcommittee will judge if it is best for all parties to meet together or if individual meetings are more appropriate.

If at the conclusion of this process, parents/carers remain dissatisfied with the response they have received, the original complaint along with the Limes’ response will be passed to the Chair Person who will adjudicate the case.

The Chair Person will communicate a detailed response, including any actions to be taken, to both the Chief Executive and the parents/carers concerned within 15 working days.

The Limes will keep a written record of the complaint, any action taken and the outcome of the investigation for a period of 10 years and a summary of each complaint will be made available to parents at their request.

Making a Complaint to Ofsted

Any parent/carer can. At any time, submit a complaint to Ofsted about any aspect ofregisteredchildcare provision. Ofsted will consider and investigate all complaints received.

The National Business Unit
Piccadilly Gate
Store Street
Manchester M1 2WD

Tel: 0300 123 1231