Submitting a grievance letter at school: what should I include?

Overview

You might be thinking about submitting a grievance letter at your school but might not know what to include. As an employee you have the right to raise a grievance in a legitimate way.

We have written another support article which outlines the process of how to raise a grievance and what constitutes as a grievance.

In this article, we outline information from Citizens Advice on how you can structure your grievance letter.

If you are an Edapt subscriber, you will just need to contact us for support in writing your own grievance statement.

What do I need to include in my grievance letter?

Citizens Advice explains to keep your letter concise and to the point. You will need to stay on point and not deviate from the subject at hand. Try to keep objective from the situation and don’t use emotive language. 

Think about how you would react if you are on the receiving end of the letter and how you could practically put in place the suggested changes. Here are some tips about what to consider:

  • Make sure your letter is sent to the right person. Your school’s grievance procedure should set out the person who deals with grievances. If the complaint is about your headteacher, you will need to find out whether it is the chair of governors or another person that the letter is sent to. If your school has an HR department, it may be a good idea to send them a copy of your letter
  • Clearly set out the key facts of your complaint. Say what happened and try to include the following details: the date and time of incidents, where they took place, the names of the people involved, the names of any witnesses
  • If your grievance is about a series of events, try to set them out in the order in which they took place
  • If you can’t remember an exact date, but know that it happened before a certain event, just say that. For example, you could say ‘A few days before I went on leave on 14 February …’ or ‘Just before the Christmas party …’
  • Try to give job titles where possible, for example assistant headteacher, head of department etc
  • Set out any evidence you have to support your complaint. If you have any information to support your complaint, include it in your letter or say that you have it and can provide it if needed. For example, you may have a statement from someone who was in the same situation as you but was treated differently
  • If you have a reasonable solution to your complaint, include this in your letter for your employer to consider. For example, you may want your school to provide certain equipment to accommodate a disability. Be reasonable, though, your employer may not have the resources to agree to what you are asking for. Remember that you are trying to work together with your employer to resolve the issue
  • If you have already tried to resolve the matter informally first, for example, by talking to your manager, set out what happened. If anything was agreed then, but has not resolved the situation, say why it didn’t work

We have published another support article on the topic of effectively solving issues with your line manager.

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The information contained within this article is not a complete or final statement of the law.
While Edapt has sought to ensure that the information is accurate and up-to-date, it is not responsible and will not be held liable for any inaccuracies and their consequences, including any loss arising from relying on this information. This article may contain information sourced from public sector bodies and licensed under the Open Government Licence. If you are an Edapt subscriber with an employment-related issue, please contact us and we will be able to refer you to one of our caseworkers.