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Support for making a complaint

This is part of a mandated policy under the operational policy framework. Any edits to this policy must follow the process outlined on the creating, updating and deleting operational policies page (staff login required).

The Department for Education is committed to ensuring its complaint management system is easily understood and accessible to everyone. This page outlines services available if you need extra support to make a complaint about the department.

Service providers

Service providers may be able to give support for customers:

  • from a culturally diverse background
  • who have special needs
  • requiring additional assistance to make a complaint.

Department support

  • Aboriginal support staff are accessible at local education offices and schools. Search for your local partnership for contact details. If you need more support, you can contact the Aboriginal Education Directorate education.aboriginalservices [at] sa.gov.au or phone 8226 1214. Read more about our Aboriginal education strategy.
  • Students (under 18) can make a complaint to the Customer Feedback Team. We encourage you to make the complaint with the school or Student Support Services at the local education office first. Help is available from Customer Feedback to support making contact if needed.

External support

  • For people who do not speak English, contact the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) on 1800 280 203 (toll free).
  • For Aboriginal interpreter services, phone 8999 2062 or email ais [at] nt.gov.au.
  • If customers are deaf, or hard of hearing and/or have a speech impairment to make and receive phone calls, the National Relay Service is available and can be contacted on 133 677 (TTY/voice calls) or 1300 555 727 (Speak and Listen) at no extra charge.
  • Child protection issues will be directed to the Department for Child Protection where appropriate.

Other links to external support services are:

Additional support requests to service providers may include help with the preparation to describe or submit a complaint, find information to support the issue, or to identify which part of the complaint is the main concern and the resolution sought.

Support persons and advocates

Anyone aged 18 or older can be a support person or advocate for a parent, carer, family member or student making a complaint.

The role of a support person or advocate is to help make the complaint process easier for the person making the complaint. Roles must be made clear and agreed by all parties at the start.

A support person can:

  • attend meetings
  • suggest a pause during meetings to support the person making the complaint and provide advice or assistance
  • take notes and help with implementing outcomes.

An advocate is authorised to lodge a complaint or speak for the person making the complaint. Generally, this will be when the person does not have capacity to communicate effectively or fully understand the actions arising. 

Where personal information is involved, the complainant must give written confirmation (by email) that the advocate has permission to act for the complainant.

If the Complaint Officer determines a possible health and safety risk to any of the parties, or where a request for information is precluded by law, the Complaint Officer will notify all parties of this and the reasons why (by email). 

Policy information

This information is part of the complaint management policy v2.4.