Complaints Procedure

Complaints Procedure

South Lanarkshire College’s complaints handling procedure (CHP) has been developed with reference to the model procedure published by the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO).  The definitions, principles, timescales and information contained in this complaints handling procedure (CHP) have been based on and/or adapted from the SPSO guidance.  Our complaints handling procedure seeks to conduct thorough, impartial and fair investigations of complaints so that we can make evidence-based decisions on the facts of a case.

South Lanarkshire College’s aim is get things right first time and therefore we value student comments and suggestions.  We have devised an extensive range of student consultation and feedback mechanisms to help us improve our levels of service. However, we do recognise that, on occasion, our service may fall short of expectations and we also value any complaints we receive.

We recognise that the fewer people who are involved in responding to a complaint and the quicker a response is given, the lower the cost of that complaint in terms of resources and redress and the higher the level of satisfaction for the student.

This CHP is available via the College website, staff Web Portal, student VLE, and in hard copy and alternative formats on request.  The College CHP informs students of their right to appeal to the SPSO.

South Lanarkshire College’s leaflet How to Complain explains the College’s CHP procedures to students and informs them of their right of appeal to the SPSO.  This leaflet is also available on the College website, at Reception, in the Advice Centre and in alternative formats on request.

This complaints handling procedure will help us do our job better, improve relationships with our students and enhance the College’s reputation.  It will also help us keep students and other students at the heart of what we do.


The following principles underpin South Lanarkshire College’s complaints handling procedure to ensure that it is effective:

User focused

It puts the student at the heart of the procedure whilst managing occasional difficult behaviour.


It is clearly communicated, easily understood and available to all.

Quick and simple

It has as few steps as necessary within an agreed and transparent timeframe.

Objective and transparent

It is evidence-based and driven by facts, not assumptions.

Impartial, independent and accountable

Fair, proportionate and consistent

It treats complainants equally, striking a balance between the need for consistency and the individual circumstances of each complaint.

Seeks early resolution

It aims to resolve complaints at the earliest opportunity, to the student’s satisfaction wherever possible and appropriate.

Delivers improvement

It is driven by the search for continuous improvement of our services to students


Important information:

Full details of our complaints process can be found here: Complaints Leaflet

You can read our Complaints Handling Procedure here: Complaints Handling Procedure

Here’s a chart detailing complaints from 2013-14

Chart Representation for 2013 to 2014

Here’s our Complaints Annual Report from 2014-15

Annual Complaint Handling Report 2014-15