RTO Complaints & Appeals
This policy and procedure provides clear and practical guidelines to ensure that complaints and appeals lodged with the RSP can be resolved, equitably and efficiently, in accordance with the principles of Natural Justice. The Complaints and Appeals Policy is in place to manage and respond to allegations involving the conduct of the RSP, its trainers, assessors or other staff, a third party providing services on the RSP behalf, its trainers, assessors or other staff or students of the RSP.
All Complaints and Appeals will be managed and treated as an opportunity for improvement, and will contribute to internal policies and procedures.
Complaints and Appeals include, but are not restricted to; matters of concern to a student relating to training delivery and assessment, the quality of the training, student support, learning materials, discrimination, and sexual harassment.
- Natural Justice is concerned with ensuring procedural fairness:
- Decisions and processes should be free from bias
- All parties have the right to be heard
- The respondent has a right to know of what s/he is accused
- All parties are told the decision and the reasons for the decision.
- The RSP acknowledges that a student who has a Complaint or Appeal, has the right to raise the Complaint or Appeal and expects that every effort will be made to resolve it in accordance with this policy. Resolution will be made without prejudice or fear of reprisal or victimization. The student has the right to present the Complaint or Appeal formally, as well as in writing (TRF/CH/00015; TRF/CH/00016).
- The RSP will manage all Complaints and Appeals fairly, equitably and efficiently as possible.
- The RSP will encourage the parties to approach the Complaint or Appeal with an open mind and to resolve problems through discussion and conciliation. Where a Complaint or
Appeal cannot be resolved through these means, the RSP acknowledges the need for an appropriate external and independent person to mediate between the parties. The parties will be given the opportunity to formally present their case to the independent person.
- Confidentiality will be maintained throughout the process of making and resolving complaints. The RSP seeks to protect the rights and privacy of all involved and to facilitate the return to a comfortable and productive learning environment.
- A copy of this Policy is available to all students and staff via the RSP and is available in the Student Handbook. The Information will also contain details of external authorities that they may approach.
- Where Complaints or Appeals have been received, RSP’s must keep evidence of how the matter was dealt with and the outcome (including the time frames). The RSP will use this information received via any complaint to review the RTO’s processes and practices to ensure the issue doesn’t happen again.
The Complaint Process
Should a student have a Complaint or Appeal, it should be brought to the attention of the trainer within seven (7) days of the issue taking place. The following steps are to be followed:
- The student is encouraged in the first instance to discuss the issue with the person involved; this might be the Trainer/assessor, member of staff, or another student to try and resolve it verbally.
- If no resolution can be reached, the student should discuss the issue with another member of staff who is not involved, to see if it can be resolved.
- If the problem continues or is not easy to resolve informally, the student should put the following information relating to the Complaint or Appeal in writing, using the Complaints and Appeals Form; A description of the Complaint or Appeal, state whether they wish to formally present their case, steps taken thus far to resolve the issue, and what outcomes they would like to fix the problem, and any preventative measures.
- If the complaint or appeal is not dealt with to the student’s satisfaction within seven (7) day period, they may bring it to the attention of the CEO. The CEO will either deal with the issue personally or arrange for it to be dealt with by a management representative. This process must commence within 48 hours from the time the CEO, or their delegate, receives written notification from the student about their dissatisfaction to the response received from their trainer and a response / resolution must be presented within 7 days.
- Should the issue still not be resolved to the student’s satisfaction, the RSP will make arrangements for an independent external person to resolve the issue. The student will be given the opportunity to formally present his or her case. The time frame for this process may vary but should take no longer than 14 days.
- All parties involved will receive a written statement of the outcomes, including reasons for the decision within the 14 day period.
- If the student is still not happy with external mediation, they may take their complaint to the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA):
- Where the RSP considers more than 60 calendar days are required to process and finalise the complaint or appeal, the RSP will inform the complainant or appellant in writing, including reasons why more than 60 calendar days are required, and regularly updates the complainant or appellant on the progress of the matter.
- All documentation relating to complaints or appeals should be archived for audit purposes.
- The RSP, CEO or Franchisee will be the person responsible for the implementation and maintenance of the policy.