Need some HELP please with regard to this official complaint and what to do next.

(37 Posts)
forcryinoutloud Mon 05-Sep-16 19:59:48

Hi, I am planning to ring the Head tomorrow but just wanted some advice/support on this one, I feel this has been blown out of proportion and the school could have sorted this for me months ago...will try and condense.

The school basically put out incorrect information on their website which caused me to spend around £25 unnecessarily back in July. I rang the school a few weeks before end of term to tell them and their attitude was 'you sort it out'. I told them I could not sort it out without spending further money or significant time and was hoping for some sort of suggestion of an apology and compensation. The Head's secretary just said she would get back to me but she never did.

As this was by no means the first time this had happened to me, as in they had not communicated when they said they would I wrote an official complaint to the Head and Governors, this was about 4 days to the end of term. I know someone must have read the letter as I had a missed call from one of the admin staff the day before end of term but didn't hear anything else, no email, text or letter of reply. When I ring tomorrow I am so fed up now with having to sort this thing that should not have gone this far I am in a mind to stay on the phone until I get to speak to the Head. Usually I get the 'he'll ring you back' and then nothing happens. Their attitude seems really poor if they think they can cause me to lose this money and the not bother to reply to my queries. What do you think?

Longlost10 Mon 05-Sep-16 20:02:28

There is no point in saying you'll stay on the phone until you speak to the head, what if the head is in meetings for the next 6 hours, or off site, or just unavailable?

As to the actual complaint, impossible to say, without a lot more information.

EvilTwins Mon 05-Sep-16 20:05:20

What are the details of the original complaint? Difficult to help/advise without knowing.

Stickerrocks Mon 05-Sep-16 20:09:49

Please tell us what you spent £25 on. What did you get in exchange for your £25? Have you suffered distress, trouble or upset and was the school negligent in making you spend the money? We need more details.

Haffdonga Mon 05-Sep-16 20:16:29

What do you want from the school? It's unrealisitc to expect the school to give you cash, but is there a compromise that could be reached. E.g. if they told you to buy the wrong piece of uniform, could they allow your ds to waer it instead of the correct one?

Did the incorrect information on the website cause other parents to spend money unnecessarily too? If so there may be other rparents complaining but I doubt very much that the school will accept responsibility or they could lose hundreds/thousands of pounds.

Is the money you spent possible to reclaim (at least in part)? e.g. If you bought a piece of kit that they said was compulsory but it's actually not needed, could you sell it second hand?

TeenAndTween Mon 05-Sep-16 20:24:19

You wrote a letter 4 days before the end of term.
School don't operate in the holidays really.
So broadly they have only had 4 working days to deal with it.

It appears to be money, not something urgent such as safeguarding.

I would wait until the 3rd working day of term. Then, if you haven't yet had a reply, ring up the school and ask to speak to the HT secretary.
Ask for confirmation that the letter has been received.
Ask when you will receive an official confirmation of receipt by letter.
Ask when you will get a formal response.

If secretary can't answer, then ask for a copy of the school's complaints procedure to be emailed to you so you can see the timescales in there.

(My guess is buying school shoes that the website implied were OK but actually aren't acceptable. probably way off).

forcryinoutloud Mon 05-Sep-16 20:47:24

They said new black uniform was needed, it wasn't, I therefore wasted the money. It would taken me 2 hours to return the uniform to the shop and I could not afford the time, as I work and have other commitments. I guess it would have taken £4 to return it by post but the school did not even offer this as a solution which I would have been willing to accept. As I said it was the initial attitude of 'you sort it' no apology and then no communication that I am annoyed about. The school has a Head, deputy Head and a Business Manager, how long does it take to make this sort of decision?? By the reaction that I got on the phone I doubt that any other parent had had this experience, perhaps I was the first to order the uniform and then point out their website error, which they then corrected.

swingofthings Mon 05-Sep-16 20:53:08

So what did other parents do or are you the only one who ordered the wrong uniform? Is it a case that it wasn't required but he can still use what you bought or is the clothing useless? If it's the former maybe you are blowing this or of proportion?

TeenAndTween Mon 05-Sep-16 20:55:12

OK. Sorry, but tbh I think you are making a bit of a mountain out of a molehill. You bought some uniform unnecessarily, you could have returned it for £4 (but chose not to), and you are now wanting to tie up time and energy of the HT etc.

Yes they shouldn't have had incorrect info on website.
So not unreasonable to point it out to them that it cost you time to purchase plus £4 to return.
But I think secondary schools have loads of things (almost anything in fact) that are far more important that they should be spending their time on.

In the words of Frozen, Let it Go.

LIZS Mon 05-Sep-16 20:59:03

You could have got your money back but haven't had the opportunity to do so in over 6 weeks?! Are you sure they aren't just phasing it in or you misunderstood. Why would you buy new in July anyway? I suspect the school may have more pressing issues to deal with.

fastdaytears Mon 05-Sep-16 21:07:08

when you say about the £4 return "solution" do you mean that the school should have reimbursed you the £4?

SideEye Mon 05-Sep-16 21:12:39

And we wonder why headteachers are leaving in droves.

forcryinoutloud Mon 05-Sep-16 21:27:08

So teenare you saying I should let my wasted money go because the Head, deputy Head , Business manager have to deal with a bullying issue or something more important? So let's forget about all 'small' crap life deals us because there's always more important things to deal with? Right?
Ok don't bother to tell the police if you've been mugged or your bike's been stolen, I mean they've got murders to deal with haven't they?

Give. Me .Strength.

Thanks for listening.

Scrumptiousbears Mon 05-Sep-16 21:29:41

Maybe you cut your nose of to spite your face by not paying £4 postage and "possibly" trying to claim that?

mummytime Mon 05-Sep-16 21:30:21

What do you think the police would do if a bike had been stolen? You would be lucky to get more than a crime number.

fastdaytears Mon 05-Sep-16 21:30:21

Right but it's nothing like having your bike nicked is it? You could have returned it for £4. Or gone to the shop.

This is a massive non-event.

HorridHenrietta2 Mon 05-Sep-16 21:35:22

But Forcryingoutloud you haven't been mugged or had something stolen. You bought an unnecessary piece of uniform which you are able to return but haven't because to do so would be a hassle or require £4 postage??
I get it, it's a bit irritating but really turning it into an official complaint is really over the top. Just return it and forget about it, life's too short.

OutDamnedWind Mon 05-Sep-16 21:47:13

You clearly know you're being a bit daft, going by your OP, else why be coy about what the money was for?

And of course the police will deal with things in order of severity.

But anyway, yes, why on earth didn't you return it? Which part of the school budget do you expect them to compensate you from? Presumably if the mistake was in the part of the school, other parents will be in this position?

SideEye Mon 05-Sep-16 22:01:52

I think you must have a lot of time on your hands, or you're very lucky if this minor irritation is what you consider to be major enough to want to make a formal complaint. if this is the kind of complaint that you constantly make to the school then I understand why they don't prioritise you.

Haffdonga Mon 05-Sep-16 22:16:27

So, you could have got your money back from the shop but you didn't have time.

And so you expect the school to pay for the item instead?! Hahahahahahah! Oh my fucking god. Talk about entitlement!

Incredible.

AgentProvocateur Mon 05-Sep-16 22:31:23

FFS - shit like this is why my DF gave up teaching. hmm

PatriciaHolm Mon 05-Sep-16 22:34:44

So you couldn't find 2 hours at any point to return it. And you genuinely think the school need to compensate you for the return costs?

An "oops, sorry, thanks for pointing the error out" from the school would have been nice.
Anything else- massive overkill on your part.

Let it go.

Ditsyprint40 Mon 05-Sep-16 22:42:51

So teenare you saying I should let my wasted money go because the Head, deputy Head , Business manager have to deal with a bullying issue or something more important? So let's forget about all 'small' crap life deals us because there's always more important things to deal with? Right?
OP, I think you lately underestimate the kind of shit that senior school leaders deal with on a daily basis. 'Bullying issues' are far from it. Serious child protection issues for a start...

I would have just paid to return it, and written a complaint letter if it bothered me that much.

There is no way I would be demanding to speak to the head. No parent really gets to speak to the head unless the head decides the situation warrants a meeting. (There's usually other staff better placed to solve different issues..)

noblegiraffe Mon 05-Sep-16 22:51:12

It's the start of a new school year. Teachers, SLT, the business manager and the school staff have way more important things going on right now than you and your £4.

If you really do need it back, please, give the school a fortnight to get started, then bring up your query again.

AleHouseWench Mon 05-Sep-16 22:52:44

What to do next?

Drop it, life is too short and you already appear to have over invested massively in this!!

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