Contracts for Excellence

Complaint Procedures

Complaint Procedures Provided for In The Contract For Excellence (Pursuant to Section 100.13 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education)

Parents of students (“Parent” as used in these procedures means the student’s parent or guardian or any person in a parental or custodial relationship to the student) who have complaints about programs or services funded by Contract for Excellence grant money are encouraged to speak to their school principal before filing a formal complaint.  If discussion with the building principal does not resolve the problem, parents may file a formal complaint using the following procedure.

Parents of students may file complaints concerning the DOE’s implementation of its Contract for Excellence by doing the following:

1. They should obtain a complaint form from the principal of their child’s school or at the District Office or by downloading it here (see below).

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2. They should submit their completed complaint form to the principal or district or high school Superintendent.

3. Or: They can submit a written complaint prepared without using the DOE form, provided it contains the information provided below.

The complaint must contain the following information:

a) A description of the program or service that was approved for implementation using Contract for Excellence funds, including: the students it was intended to serve and the date on which it was supposed to begin;
b) A description of the ways in which the program or service currently in effect at the school does not reflect the approved program or service;
c) The person(s) responsible for the program or service at the school; and
d) A description of the remedy or relief sought.

The information necessary to complete section (1) above may be obtained here.

Regarding section (3), if the parent does not know the name or title of the specific staff person at the school, it will be sufficient to list the school’s principal.  

Complaints must be filed with principal or the district or high school Superintendent; they may be filed at any time within the school year after the Contract has been approved by the State Education Department and becomes operational.

4. If the complaint is filed with the principal, the principal shall investigate the complaint and shall respond to the complainant with a written decision that contains the basis of the determination within thirty (30) calendar days of receiving the complaint.  The written notification must provide an explanation of the procedures for filing an appeal.  In the event that written notification of determination is not received by the complainant within 35 business days from the date the school district received the complaint, the complainant may file an appeal to the next level

5. If after reviewing the complaint, the principal denies the request for a remedy the complainant may appeal the principal’s decision by filing an appeal with the superintendent, within fifteen (15) calendar days of receiving the denial.  The superintendent may exercise discretion to accept an appeal filed after the specified time period for good cause shown.

6. If the complaint is filed with the superintendent, the superintendent shall investigate the complaint and shall respond to the complainant with a written decision that contains the basis of the determination within thirty (30) calendar days of receiving the complaint.  The written notification must provide an explanation of the procedures for filing an appeal.  In the event that written notification of determination is not received by the complainant within 35 business days from the date the school district received the complaint, the complainant may file an appeal to the next level.

7. If, after reviewing the complaint, the Superintendent denies the request for a remedy, the complainant may appeal the Superintendent’s decision by filing an appeal with the Chancellor, c/o The Office of Legal Services, Room 308, 52 Chambers Street, New York, New York 10007, within fifteen (15) calendar days of receiving the denial.  The Chancellor may exercise discretion to accept an appeal filed after the specified time period for good cause shown.

8. The Chancellor’s Office shall review the appeal and make a determination, issuing a written statement setting forth the basis for the decision, within thirty (30) calendar days of the filing of the appeal.

9.  If the Chancellor’s Office denies the appeal, the complainant has the right to appeal to the Commissioner of Education, pursuant to Education Law, Section 310, within twenty (20) calendar days of the date of the Chancellor’s decision.