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Customer compliments and complaints

​​​​​​We aim to deliver high quality services for our customers. Compliments and complaints from you can help us continually improve our services.


How do I give a compliment?

You can make a compliment or provide other feedback by:


The department is committed to managing customer complaints in an accountable, transparent, timely and fair manner. We manage complaints in accordance with our Customer Complaints Management Framework (PDF, 174KB), policy (PDF, 113KB) and procedure (PDF, 188KB).

What is a complaint?

A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction about the service or action of the department, or its staff, made by someone directly affected by the service or action.


​​What is a complaint​​What is not a complaint
  • ​a decision made, or a failure to make a decision, by an employee of the department
  • an act, or failure to act, by the department
  • the formulation of a proposal or intention by the department
  • the making of  recommendation by the department
  • the customer service provided by an employee of the department.
  • ​requests for more information
  • requests for a change in services or a request for a new service
  • expressing a concern about a situation
  • providing feedback on the department's performance
  • a decision or action by the department that does not directly affect the person
  • providing information (e.g. reporting an incident).


Please be aware that some complaints need to be handled by specialist areas within the department, and will not be managed using the Customer Complaints Management Framework (PDF, 174KB), policy (PDF, 113KB) and procedure (PDF, 188KB). These include:

  • a risk of harm to a child
  • allegations of a child protection nature against an employee
  • allegations of corrupt conduct, misconduct or possible criminal conduct
  • public interest disclosures
  • privacy complaints
  • employee complaints about their employment
  • legal proceedings
  • early childhood complaints linked to the National Quality Framework.

Before making a complaint

Before you lodge a complaint with the department, you are encouraged to contact the relevant school or education provider to try and resolve your issue. This is often a quick and easy way to have your concern addressed. School contact details are available on the schools directory.

What is the process for making a complaint?

Lodge complaint
Assessment and resolution

Lodge the​​ customer complaint

You can make a complaint by:

Make sure you give clear, complete and factual information about what happened, when and where it happened and any other supporting information.  Also tell us the outcome you are seeking or the action you want the department to take.

Reasonable assistance is provided to anyone wishing to make a customer complaint. Language assistance is provided through the Translating and Interpreting Service. For deaf and hearing impaired customers, please contact us using the National Relay Service.

Assessment and resolution

We aim to respond and resolve your complaint as quickly as possible, taking into consideration the complexity and timing of your complaint. As a general guide:

  • simple complaints may take up to 20 working days*
  • complaints requiring some inquiry may take up to 45 working days
  • complaints that require investigation and escalation may take up to 90 working days or longer in some cases.

*For complaints involving a school or education provider, working days refers to schools days in a school term.


If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of your complaint, you can ask for your complaint to be reviewed by the department. This is called an internal review. Your request for an internal review should:

  • be in writing
  • be lodged with the area that responded to your complaint within 28 days of receiving your complaint outcome
  • explain why a review is appropriate and provide any new information relevant to the review of your matter
  • detail the action you would like taken to resolve the complaint.

If after an internal review you remain unhappy or dissatisfied with the outcome, you can seek an external review, which will consider whether the department's management of your complaint was fair, reasonable and proper. If you would like to seek an external review, contact the Queensland Ombudsman or other relevant authority.

What are your responsibilities as a complainant?

As a complainant, it is your responsibility to:

  • understand that complex complaints can take time to review
  • give us a clear idea of the problem and your desired solution
  • give us all the relevant information at the time you make your complaint 
  • let us know of any changes affecting your complaint including letting us know if you no longer need our help
  • cooperate with us in a respectful and reasonable way
  • understand that abusive, aggressive or disrespectful conduct will not be tolerated.

The department may not proceed with your complaint if your conduct is unreasonable.​

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia (CC BY 3.0) ( )
Last updated
24 January 2018