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Making a complaint

We’re sorry that we have done something that has made you dissatisfied with our products or services. When something has gone wrong, we want to know so we can put it right as quickly as we can for you.

You may find the answer to your complaint below:-


What is a complaint?

We consider a complaint as an expression(s) of dissatisfaction regarding our actions and/or products and services offered by NCFE group, either verbally or written which requires a response. Your complaint needs to be made within 12 months of the incident you’re complaining about.

Whilst we treat every complaint fairly, we will not engage with frivolous, meritless or vexatious complaints. We will not accept repeated contacts from complainants, without being presented with new information or evidence. In such cases we will advise you of our decision, such as no longer corresponding with you on this matter.

If at any point you, your staff or learners wish to be legally represented in relation to any aspect of a complaint, this must be discussed with us. We reserve the right to be legally represented and to act upon legal advice.


How do I make a complaint about my school, college or training provider?

We recommend that you contact your provider in the first instance and follow their complaints procedure. If you have exhausted their policy and are still not satisfied with the outcome of your complaint, you can escalate your complaint to us and we’ll do everything we can to help. We will ask for evidence of how your complaint has been managed so please keep hold of any communications between yourself and your provider.

My provider has gone into liquidation what are my options?

We encourage you to attempt to maintain contact with your provider, as our communications will be with them as our customer. Where possible we will work with your provider to complete any learners that are registered with NCFE. Where this is not possible, we will work with any learners registered with NCFE, to source an alternative provider. The alternative provider will work with you with the aim of completing your qualification. Any fees to complete your qualification would need to be discussed and agreed between you and your new provider.

If you have not been registered by your training provider with NCFE, you can still utilise our find nearest centre facility, on the qualification pages of our website. Upon entering your postcode, our website will bring back results of the closest providers, which are approved to deliver the qualification that you are studying. Any fees to complete your qualification will need to be discussed and agreed between yourself and your new provider.


I’ve lost my DCS, can you tell me why?

If you don’t meet the DCS criteria during your external quality assurance DCS will be removed. Your External Quality Assurer will discuss this with you and give you an action plan so it’s clear what you need to do to improve. In exceptional circumstance where information from a range of external sources raises concerns regarding your centre, e.g. complaints, suspensions or investigations this may lead us to review your DCS approval. If this happens, a member of the Quality Assurance team will contact you to highlight the issues and discuss the concerns. Once DCS has been lost you will need 2 consecutive External Quality Assurance visits that meet our quality criteria to gain it back. This involves being graded as excellent or above average in all categories and to have completed all of the outstanding actions set by the External Quality Assurer.

I’m unable to contact my External Quality Assurer (EQA) to book in a visit?

You can check your External Quality Assurers contact details on the portal under the My Products section, to ensure you have the most up to date contact details. Our EQAs will look to respond to your query within 48 hours. If you have had no response within the timescale provided, please contact our Customer Support team who will assist with arranging contact.  

I haven’t received my certificate(s)

We will process your certificate claims within 24 hours (claims received after 3pm will be processed along with the next day’s claims). Certificates are printed up to 48 hours after being processed, at this stage E Certs will be available under the certification tab on the portal for you to view and download. Your certificate(s) will be posted within 24 hours of being printed, delivery timescales will depend on the postage service and will vary for centres outside of the UK.

For any learners requesting replacement certificates we will process your request within 10 working days of receiving a successful payment from you.

When will my learner’s results be released?

You will find most of our results release dates on our external assessment timetable.

Legacy Functional skills results are released after 6 working days, providing we have received all the relevant information regarding your learner’s assessment on time. Any papers returned late or online assessments not uploaded may result in delays to us issuing their results.

*For reformed Functional Skills, results will be issued on a 6 working day turnaround for online assessments from February 2020, subject to awarding*

For more information about our complaints procedure please read on our complaints leaflet found here.

Contact Us

If you’re unable to find an answer on our website and still wish to make a complaint please get in touch with us using the details below:

By phone

  • NCFE - 0191 239 8000
  • EPA Plus - 0191 240 8950
  • Skills Forward - 0300 102 1023

by email - [email protected]

in writing

Customer Recovery team
Quorum Business Park
Benton Lane
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE12 8BT

Face to face with any of our representatives

or by completing the form below

Web Chat is also available on all our websites.