Concerns and complaints about childcare

Concerns where children are at risk of harm

All reports or enquiries concerning the welfare or safety of a child must go straight to the Bridge Partnership team on 0161 603 4500 as the first port of call. This applies to reports from council staff, the public, partners and outside agencies. The email address is

If a child is in immediate danger of being harmed, or if a child is home alone, the police should be called on 999.

Funded childcare place - request to change childcare provider

Every funded childcare place has a three week settling in period where you can move your child to another childcare provider. Please ask your current or new childcare provider to let us know your child has moved.

After the three week settling in period has ended, children should only move at the end of a free entitlement period which are 31 March, 31 August, 31 December and you will need to ensure you have given your current childcare provider the required notice which is usually four weeks and that you have a confirmed place with a new childcare provider. As long as all parties are in agreement then you just need to ensure that one of the childcare providers lets us know your child is moving.

Important - if you wish to move your child outside of the periods above and/or before a four week notice has been given to your current childcare provider, then you will need to get approval from us to transfer your child to a new provider, please complete our funded childcare transfer request form.

General concerns about childcare

If you have any concerns about your childcare provider, for example, staffing ratios, contracts, childcare cost queries, you should raise them with your childcare provider in the first instance. It is important to raise any issues with them, as there may be a reasonable explanation, or if there is a problem or something you are not happy with, you may be able to come to a solution.

If you are unable to speak with the childcare provider directly or are unsure about what to do or you want to know more about the complaints process please contact Salford's Starting Life Well information service for advice, email

Complaints to Ofsted

If you have already approached your childcare provider, but still feel concerned that they are not providing an adequate level of care, please contact Ofsted, who will then investigate your complaint.

Ofsted helpline: 0300 123 4234

Ofsted will look into any matter related to the requirements and conditions of registration, as well as concerns about people providing childcare who are not registered with Ofsted. Ofsted, however, don't handle complaints about contracts or fees. For further information please visit the Ofsted website or download their guidance leaflet 'Concerns and complaints about childminders and childcare providers' below.

Complaints to Salford Children's Services

Complaints about Sure Start Children's Centres or nursery schools/classes attached to a primary school should be directed to Salford City Council.

Most problems can be sorted out quickly by talking to your child's early learning or childcare provider. However, if after speaking to the Local Authority (LA) run provision you are still not satisfied the council has a formal complaints procedures that must be followed.

You can make a complaint online using the complaints, compliments and comments online form.

If you have a problem or complaint about your child's school please look at the guidance on the making a complaint page. Ofsted can only consider complaints that affect the school as whole rather than cases regarding individual children, eg a school is not providing a good enough education, pupils are not achieving, the school is not well led or managed. For further details please read Ofsted's guidance for parents - 'Complaints to Ofsted about schools', which can be downloaded below.

Downloadable documents

If you are unable to view documents of these types, our downloads page provides links to viewing software.

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