Procedures for Resolution of Complaints and Appeals – All Students

Should there be any occasion when an issue, complaint or problem arises, please confront the issue as quickly as possible, rather than continue unhappily. The following steps are available:

  1. Discuss or resolve the difficulty with the student or staff member(s) in question, for example:
    1. If the issue concerns class work or a course the problem should be discussed with your teacher
    2. If the issue concerns accommodation it should be discussed with the Homestay Co-ordinator
    3. If the issue concerns fees it should be discussed with administration
    4. If the issue concerns changes to some aspect of CLC life it should be discussed with a teacher
    5. If the issue concerns a financial dispute see the Cairns Language Centre refund policy which is determined in accordance with the National Code of Practice for Registration Authorities and Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students (the “National Code”), the Education for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS ACT 2000), and Education Services for Overseas Student Regulations 2001 (ESOS Regulations 2001).
    6. Either person may nominate a support person to accompany them at any stage of the process.
  2. Either person may nominate a support person to accompany them at any stage of the process.
  3. If a resolution cannot be reached, discuss the difficulty with the Director of Studies, a senior member of staff nominated by the Director of Studies, or in the absence of the Director of Studies, a person nominated by the Principal. An interpreter may be used to help resolve the issue. A mediator with knowledge of the student’s culture or a mediator or support person may be brought in to help with the resolution process. The mediator will be brought in at the student’s expense. Independent mediators are available upon request or ring Dispute Resolution Branch, Department of Justice and Attorney General on 1800 017 288.
  4. If the difficulty has still not been resolved either person from step 2 may make a written request for resolution of the matter to the Director of Studies or a senior member of staff nominated by the Director of Studies. The matter is now considered a grievance. Written requests will only be accepted if steps 1 and 2 have been completed.
  5. The Director of Studies may then attempt to resolve the grievance through further negotiation or mediation, or may advise the complainant in writing that the grievance is considered to be frivolous and/or vexatious, and that no enquiry is to be made.
  6. If the grievance has not been resolved nor the complaint dismissed the Director of Studies will convene a College Grievance Committee, which would be established on an ad hoc basis and would usually consist of 2-3 people for each case.
  7. The outcome of the College Grievance Committee’s deliberations will be communicated in writing to both parties involved in the grievance. This communication should normally include an offer from the Director of Studies or a senior member of staff nominated by the Director of Studies to debrief or otherwise provide further assistance to either party. All written communications should be signed by the parties and photocopies will be kept in order to provide evidence of the receipt of the document.
  8. The Director of Studies or a senior member of staff nominated by the Director of Studies may monitor, or be directed by the College Grievance Committee to monitor, the resolution of the dispute for a maximum period of one month, and may wish to make further recommendations (in writing) should the settlement not resolve the dispute to the satisfaction of both parties.
  9. A grievance case would be considered closed upon receipt by the Director of Studies of a written withdrawal of the grievance by the complainant or of a written agreement between both parties.
  10. Decisions by the College Grievance Committee, the Director of Studies or the senior member of staff nominated by the Director of Studies may be appealed in writing to the Principal.
  11. The Principal shall then investigate the matter, and may establish a Grievance Appeal Panel to consider the matter, which would be established on an ad hoc basis and would usually consist of 2-3 people for each case. If a student visa student is concerned about the actions of this School/College they may approach the State Authority for CRICOS Registration. In Queensland this is the Department of Education. The Director-General of the Department of Education has the power to suspend or cancel the school’s/College’s registration if a breach of the requirements of registration provision is proved.
  12. The decision shall be communicated in writing to both parties.
  13. The decision of the Principal or the Grievance Appeal Panel shall be considered final. These procedures do not limit a student’s rights to follow other legal remedies. After the process has been completed if a Student Visa student is concerned about the action of the College please contact in writing Qld Department of Education, Senior Education Officer, Office of Non-State Education, PO Box 15033, BRISBANE CITY EAST, QLD, 4002 or the Overseas Student Ombudsman on ombudsman@ombudsman.gov.au or call 1300 362 072.