We welcome comments about how we run our service. Your views help us to improve our performance and recognise your particular needs. So if you think we could do better, we want to hear from you. Complaints are dealt with in confidence. We will act on what you tell us, but will not identify you or give details of what you say without your consent unless required to do so by legislation.
We run our service in line with policy decisions made by the Council. Sometimes staff may tell you that the issues you raise are to do with the policies of the County Council. If you want to suggest that a policy should be changed, you should contact your local county councillor. To find out who this is, and how to get in touch with them, please ask for a copy of the directory of councillors at one of Hampshire County Council's information centres (freefone 0800 028 0888) or visit http://www3.hants.gov.uk/yourcountycouncillors.htm
We also like to have your suggestions for improving our service as well as hearing from you when you think we did something well or something in particular impressed you. You can either telephone, write, send us an e-mail or use the electronic Suggestions, complaints or compliments form below. We acknowledge suggestions within 5 working days and respond in full within 20 working days and will deal with compliments within the same timescale unless you tell us that a response is unnecessary.
Our complaints procedure is aimed at making sure we properly look into your complaint and give you a considered response.
Talking with staff will usually resolve any problems you may have, so the first thing we ask you to do is to raise the matter with the staff concerned. You can telephone, write a letter, e-mail or call at their office. We hope they will be able to put things right straight away, or explain why they are unable to do so. If you do not want to contact individual members of staff you should contact the Head of Service, Hampshire Governor Services, Children's Services Department, The Castle, Winchester, SO23 8UG.
If you are unhappy with the response you have received at Service level, then you should contact the Children's Services Department, Hampshire County Council County Office, The Castle, Winchester, SO23 8UG. The chief officer for that department will make sure that the service investigates your complaint and responds to you in writing.
We hope that you will be satisfied with that response. If not, you can ask the County Council's Chief Executive (Hampshire County Council, County Office, The Castle, Winchester, SO23 8UJ) to consider your complaint. The Chief Executive will make sure that your complaint is investigated again and that you are given a written response setting out conclusions.
You should complete the electronic complaints form in the first instance, when it is completed it will be mailed automatically to your relevant local office. Complete the electronic form or you can also telephone, write a letter or send us an e-mail.
We will acknowledge your complaint within 5 working days and let you know the outcome of our investigations within 20 working days. If we need further time to make a full response to your complaint we will let you know within 20 working days with an estimate of when you can expect a reply.
If we get something wrong, we will do our best to put it right. We will review our policy and procedures to try to stop it happening again. We will admit our mistakes and offer a full apology. We may offer financial compensation if you suffered a loss as a result of our mistake.
We monitor complaints and compliments; a summary of the returns we have received for the previous financial year is on our website at: www.hants.gov.uk/education/governors/complaints.html
Where the report highlights service delivery problems we use this information to make changes.
If you are unhappy with the way we have dealt with your complaint, or feel we have treated you unfairly, you can write to the Local Government Ombudsman at The Oaks No 2, Westwood Way, Westwood Business Park, Coventry, CV4 8JB. The Ombudsman will expect you to have taken your complaint through our own procedures first. Our information centres can give you a leaflet about the Ombudsman service. You can also contact the Ombudsman's advice line on 0845 602 1983 or visit the website at www.lgo.org.uk
IF YOU REQUIRE A LARGE PRINT VERSION OF THIS DOCUMENT PLEASE CONTACT CLAIRE BAILEY ON 01962 845846. If there is anything which makes it difficult for you to pursue your complaint, for example if English is not your first language please use the same number to contact us and we will discuss how we might help you.