Stanfort Academy has a system for managing feedback and complaints from students, customers and staff. The College believes strongly that feedback is an important part in its continual efforts to improve the quality of products, delivery, administration and quality of service. Stanfort Academy has a process in place to assist their valued customers/ students and staff in providing resolution for a grievance in the following areas:
• Academic Standards, Curriculum and Courseware
• Behaviour and Discipline
• Delivery of course and Student Support Services
• Facilities and Infrastructure
Stanfort Academy treats any student’s grievance as important and valuable feedback to them. For any complaint or grievance – whether it is verbally lodged or by letter or by fax or email, Stanfort Academy will document the nature of grievance, complaint and given an interim acknowledgement that the matter is being investigated.
1. Informal Resolution of Complaint/ Feedback
Informal management of feedback, which is normally the verbal complaint to the administrative staff of the respective department and can be taken as minor problem, will be attempted / resolved on the same day as it is received before escalation to Complaint/ Grievance or Written Complaint/ Grievance (major problem).
Time taken for resolution: 1 day
2. Formal Resolution of Complaint/ Feedback
If unresolved on the same day (i.e. complainant is not satisfied with the resolution by the respective staff and student/ complainant submits the Complaint/ Feedback Form formally), the College gives an acknowledgement or initial response to the feedback / complaint within 3 days from the day the feedback/grievance is received.
Upon receipt of the feedback or complaints in hard copy (e.g. letter or fax) or soft copy (e.g. email) from the public or students, the management will direct the relevant staff to look into the matter and to report back to him.
Student or customer can use the relevant forms to lodge complaint to the management. The following forms are readily available to students or customers:
• Student Evaluation Form (request from the school and mail);
• Customer Service Feedback Form (downloadable at the bottom of the page);
• Student Feedback Form (downloadable at the bottom of the page);
• Online Enquiries & Feedback (at www.stanfort.edu.sg Home page or contact page);
The respective staff is supposed to conduct the necessary investigation to establish the circumstance and facts of the case and submit report not later than three (3) days to the management.
The management will verify the report and ascertain that there are basis to accept or dismiss the complaint or grievance. Within 7 days the management will offer a solution based on the findings of the investigation conducted to the student for acceptance.
If the solution is accepted no further action will be pursued except filing the proceeding for record. Where necessary, Principal will discuss the feedback / complaint with the management team to draw learning points. The respective staff, then, follows up with appropriate actions to improve the College’s operations.
If student refuses to accept the solution offered by the management and requests to review again the decisions, the management will review the case and take into account any new finding to offer alternative solution. Within maximum of 21 days upon the receipt of student’s grievance, the College will offer the final solution. This is final.
If the Student still refuses to accept the final solution offered by the management, student can refer the complaint/grievance to CPE Mediation Centre for a resolution prior to instituting any legal action /proceedings.
Stanfort Academy’s targets to resolve feedback / complaints = Within 21 working days
All feedback / complaints (including disputes) and the actions taken to resolve them are filed in the Complaint/ Feedback File that also provides information on nature of complaint / grievance and the time taken to resolve. Stanfort Academy uses the feedback/complaints received as one of the inputs for the internal review process.
– Time taken for acknowledgement/ initial response of the receipt of complaint/ feedback: 3 days
– Time taken for investigation of matters and reporting back to management: 3 days
– Management/ Administrative staff notification of resolution to complainant: 7 days
– Final decision to the complainant if the complainant request for review of the resolution: 7 days
– Total time taken for the whole process of resolving complaint/ feedback: 21 days
Information on CPE’S Mediation and Arbitration (www.cpe.gov.sg)
Students can refer to the Committee for Private Education website https://www.ssg.gov.sg/cpe/student-services/
for more detailed information about mediation and arbitration or mediation website http://www.mediation.com.sg/
Students are encouraged to approach the private education institution (PEI) directly to resolve their complaints at the earliest opportunity. If the matter remains unresolved or the student is unsatisfied with the outcome, students may approach the CPE Student Services Centre for assistance.
Types of disputes which can be referred to the CPE Mediation-Arbitration Scheme
Disputes which can be referred to the CPE Mediation-Arbitration Scheme include unsatisfactory services provided by PEIs, fee refunds, disciplinary issues and quality of courses and teachers. If students are unsure their complaint is suitable for dispute resolution, the Centre’s officers will be able to advise them.
At the Student Services Centre, the officers will review the complaints and provide the appropriate advice. Depending on the type of complaints, the following resolution procedures are recommended:
|Complaint||Recommended Course of Action|
|Private education institutions which have violated conditions of registration (e.g. misrepresentation or failure to honour contract terms)||Official investigation of the private education institution by an inspectorate team from the Committee for Private Education |
|(e.g. poor teaching quality, changes to the curriculum, and delays in awarding certificates)||Stage 1: Mediation |
Stage 2: Arbitration
|Fee refunds||Small Claims Tribunal |
(For amounts less than SGD$10, 000)
CPE Dispute Resolution Mechanism
For clear-cut fee refund issues of less than $10,000, students can lodge their case with the Small Claims Tribunal.
For complaints of other nature, students can choose to participate in the Committee for Private Education’s (CPE’s) appointed Dispute Resolution Scheme.
Dispute Resolution Scheme
Private education institutions’ participation in the dispute resolution process is compulsory as stipulated by the Private Education Act.
There are two stages in the process – mediation and arbitration.
Stage 1: Mediation
The complaint may be referred to the Singapore Mediation Centre for mediation.
If a settlement between the student and the private education institution could be reached at the mediation stage, a settlement agreement would be drawn up and endorsed by the respective parties, and the dispute resolved.
Stage 2: Arbitration
If the parties fail to reach a settlement through mediation, the student can progress on to arbitration for a resolution to his dispute.
The Singapore Institute of Arbitrators is the appointed provider of arbitration services.
Procedure for Dispute Resolution
If student wish to initiate the dispute resolution process, they will be required to fill up an application form at the CPE Student Services Centre and in it the nature of the dispute must be clearly stated. The application form will then be sent to SMC (Singapore Mediation Centre) which will contact student and the PEI within seven working days for an appropriate date to hold the mediation session.
Stage 1 (Mediation): Prior to the mediation, the PEI and the complainant involved will exchange through the SMC a concise summary of the case, as well as copies of relevant documents referred to in the summary that the parties wish to rely on during mediation. At the end of the first day of mediation, if the parties are able to arrive at an agreement, the mediator will draw up a settlement agreement and close the case.
Stage 2 (Arbitration): However, if a settlement is not reached, the complainant can decide whether they wish to proceed to the arbitration stage, which is a paper-based review of the dispute. The arbitrator may call for a hearing if it is deemed to be necessary. The complainant will be required to submit a request to SIArb to commence arbitration, and within 14 working days of receiving the request, the PEI will submit to SIArb their defence. The complainant has another 14 working days to submit their reply to SIArb upon receiving the PEI’s defence. For a documents-only arbitration, the arbitrator will publish his arbitral award within 60 days from the commencement of the arbitration, while if a hearing was held, the arbitrator will publish his award within 90 days from the commencement of the arbitration.