Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted
Managed independently by Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution
The Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted may investigate any alleged failure by Ofsted to follow proper procedures, discourtesy, behaviour of Ofsted staff or contractors, discrimination or injustice, delay and the failure to accept and apologise for mistakes made.
The Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted is independent of Ofsted and whilst the Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted cannot overturn inspection judgements or decisions made by Ofsted, it may offer an independent view on complaints and provide recommendations, advice and guidance to Ofsted to help it to achieve best practice in complaints handling procedures. Ofsted does not have to comply with the recommendations but, if it does not comply, must explain its reasons for not doing so.
The Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted is accountable to the Secretary of State for Education and is obliged to produce an annual report on its work.
Ofsted will write to a complainant when their complaints process is exhausted. The Complainant may then apply to ICASO.
Please note that Ofsted is not obliged to comply with the recommendations but if they do not do so they must inform the Adjudicator of their decision and explain their reasons for not complying.
The Independent Complaints Adjudication Service for Ofsted (ICASO) is entirely independent of Ofsted and can be accessed once a Complainant has exhausted the Ofsted internal complaints procedure and remains dissatisfied with Ofsted’s handling of that complaint.
An ICASO Adjudicator will be appointed upon receipt of an application to ICASO. The Adjudicator will investigate the manner in which Ofsted dealt with the complaint in question and provide advice and recommendations to improve Ofsted's systems and practices for dealing with complaints.
The Adjudicator's recommendations may include methods for addressing failings both particular to a complaint or generally to improve complaint handling procedures. Any recommendations made by the ICASO Adjudicator will not be binding upon Ofsted. However, if Ofsted declines to comply with the recommendations, they must state explicitly their reasons for doing so.
The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) is registered under the Data Protection Act 2018 and covered under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).When submitting any supporting evidence, please be mindful that you are not in breach of GDPR. This means that if you wish to provide evidence you would need to redact the section/s relating to any person or organisation that is not a party to this dispute (such as other members of staff/parents or external persons). Please also ensure you redact information such as names, dates of birth, or anything else which might identify individual children/pupils/learners. The Independent Adjudicator may disregard any information that breaches GDPR and this may impact the overall review of your case. For further information, you may wish to the Information Commissioner’s Office website, accessible at: https://ico.org.uk/.