Rights, responsibilities, refunds, complaint handling
When you become a student at St Mark’s, here is the way we will regard our obligations to you, your obligations to us, the way to ask for a refund or to pursue a complaint.
1. Rights, responsibilities and refunds
a) Our obligations to you:
St Mark’s RTO seeks to uphold our obligations to you. We will:
- accurately represent the training we provide;
- help you to decide if our training is appropriate to your needs, given your existing skills and competencies;
- make clear whether your training is ‘nationally recognised’ and toward certification under the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF), or is unaccredited;
- clearly inform you of what you need to pay and provide in order to complete the training, and as far as is within our power, never alter these requirements after the commencement of your course;
- provide you with quality training and assessment
- inform you if and when someone not employed by St Mark’s is training you on our behalf
- on attainment of competencies and after settlement of all fees, issue you with a testamur, record of achievement or statement of attainment within thirty days of course completion;
- provide a refund for services not provided by us if the arrangement between us is terminated early (e.g. if you withdraw before the census date of the semester of study), or if we fail to provide the service (noting that we may not provide a refund for training and assessment provided in good faith and/or unattended by you and/or where our assessor deems you not yet to be competent);
- cooperate with you to resolve any difficulties or complaints you have within sixty (60) days, where possible (see below); and
- in the unlikely event of our closure or cessation, refer you to a provider who may help you complete your training.
b) Your obligations to us:
By enrolling in your course of training, you undertake to:
- meet the requirements your trainer/assessor sets for successful completion of your training;
- quickly bring to the attention of your trainer any difficulties, challenges or hardships you are facing;
- pay our invoices by their due dates, or agree to a payment plan and pay us when you have undertaken to do so;
- meet the cost of ancillary requirements we have described at the start of the course; and
- notify us, should you withdraw, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, giving the date of and reasons for withdrawal.
2. Feedback and complaints
If you think we have not met or are not meeting our obligations to you, we very much want to resolve that quickly and amicably. We seek to ensure that disagreement and conflict is handled in a way that is fair, safe and respectful.
Because we’re a theological centre, a comment from Jesus seems appropriate. He is really onto something when he says that when someone ‘sins against you, go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone’. If they listen to you, ‘you have regained’ that person, he says (Matt. 18:15). He means that in the normal course of events, this is the best way to return to a good relationship. While there are clear exceptions, the wisdom of this instruction is that it avoids triangulation—that natural human tendency to first drag in a third-party in as an ally to fix some other person.
We’ll go on to state how and when to involve others; but if you have a complaint about an assessment, or about anything else relating to your time with St Mark’s, please raise it first with your trainer/assessor or with the person concerned.
- The clearest exception concerns abuse. If your complaint relates to sexual or other harassment or abuse by anyone employed by, studying at or representing St Mark’s, or if you suspect the sexual abuse of a child in any way connected to St Mark’s, please call the Abuse Hotline of the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn on 1800 070 511. (See further https://anglicancg.org.au/safe-ministries/safe-ministry-unit.) Also report the matter to the Director of St Mark’s, if you feel safe to do so.
- Other issues should be dealt with in the first instance through St Mark’s personnel. If your issue is a minor frustration, we welcome feedback about what we can improve. Concise, clear descriptions of the problem are the most helpful to us. Please bring them to the attention of your trainer, the Registrar, the Academic Dean or our Library Staff at any time during or after your course. We will log these in our quality management system for attention. While an immediate fix may not be possible, we do aim to act on student feedback as we are able.
- Any issues concerning billing, payment plans or refunds should be raised directly with the Business Manager, not with your trainer/assessor.
- For other complaints about your training, oral complaints will be dealt with informally and written complaints will receive a written response. It is most helpful if you can firstly describe the specific issue, incident or problem, and then relate your feelings about it. We’ll definitely respect your feelings but it can sometimes be hard to know what exactly is the problem when a person’s feelings are heightened.
- We will do our best to resolve complaints within sixty (60) days, and if that becomes impossible, we will let you know accordingly.If your complaint is about a trainer assessing you as not yet competent in some skill, be aware that the primary responsibility of St Mark’s trainers and assessors is to give a clear and unbiased evaluation of your competence, as based on assessment. This is their main task according to nation VET regulation. You may always ask for further feedback, and give any grounds for objecting to the trainer’s assessment. Even so, try hard to hear and engage with their reasons for judging you not yet competent, as these reasons are intended to give opportunity for growth. You may also ask your assessor, orally or in writing, to provide an alternative means by which to assess your competency if you feel that the assessment method unfairly disadvantaged you.
- If you are unsatisfied with the outcome of this discussion, or if you feel unsafe to take up the matter directly with the person concerned, you may discuss it with St Mark’s RTO Academic Dean. St Mark’s officers will respect your privacy and confidentially to the maximum possible extent (so e.g. not including any issue requiring mandatory reporting to a government authority).
- In matters related to assessment, the RTO Academic Dean’s response to your complaint will take into account (i) the requirements of the unit of competency, as reflected in the assessment tool; (ii) the evidence you have provided in response to the assessment tool; and (iii) the trainer’s feedback on the reasons for their evaluation.
- The RTO Academic Dean may determine (i) that the trainer’s assessment of your competency stands; (ii) invite the trainer to reassess your performance; (iii) invite another qualified assessor to examine your work, or (iv) propose to you some other path.
- If the matters remains unresolved, the RTO Academic Dean may refer the matter to St Mark’s Director, or you may request a discussion with him or her. The Director will make time to hear you concerns, and to propose a solution. However, if the matter is related to assessment, the Director will not reverse the judgment of an assessor or of the RTO Academic Dean.
- If you remain unsatisfied after discussion with the Director, he or she will offer you the opportunity for external dispute resolution offered in the first instance through Anglican Diocesan Services, the administrative arm of St Mark’s parent entity; or through an independent arbitrator.
- At any time, you have the right to lodge a complaint with the Australian Skills Quality Authority (AQSA), the regulatory body overseeing St Mark’s RTO (#88072). For further details, go to https://www.asqa.gov.au/complaints. (ASQA imposes some conditions on the complaints it will receive.)
We want your time at St Mark’s to be enriching, and look forward to resolving any difficulties amicably and helpfully.