American Wine School Policies

The following outlines policies set by the American Wine School (AWS):

  • Reasonable adjustments
  • Special consideration
  • Malpractice & Maladministration
  • Conflict of interest
  • Diversity & equality
  • Complaints & appeals
  • Data protection
  • Cancellations & refunds

Policy for Candidates Requiring Reasonable Adjustments

A reasonable adjustment is a change to remove or reduce the effect of a student’s disability so as to remove disadvantage in the assessment situation. Examples of reasonable adjustments may involve:

  • Allowing candidates extra time to complete the assessment
  • Providing materials in large text format
  • Providing access facilitators during assessment, such as a sign language interpreter or reader
  • Re-organizing the assessment room, such as removal of visual stimuli for an autistic candidate.

– Please know that it is not appropriate to make requests for special arrangements if your particular difficulty directly affects performance in the actual attributes that are the focus of the assessment. Further, please know that reasonable adjustments cannot give unfair advantage over students for whom reasonable adjustments are not being made, or alter the assessment demands of the qualification or award.

Reasonable adjustments must be processed and approved before the assessment takes place. Students requesting a reasonable adjustment should do so at the time of course registration. Upon receiving the registration, AWS will send a confirmation letter along with an application for reasonable adjustments that includes a request for evidence of the individual circumstances. This data will be protected as outlined in our data protection policy. Please submit any Requests for reasonable adjustments at least 6 weeks before the date of the examination.

Policy for Candidates Requiring Special Consideration

Special consideration is post-examination adjustment that compensates disadvantage candidates who were suffering from temporary illness, injury, or condition at the time of the exam.

A candidate may be eligible for special considerations if:

  • Performance during an examination is affected by circumstances beyond the control of the candidate such as recent personal illness, accident, or bereavement
  • alternative assessment arrangements which were agreed in advance of the assessment proved inappropriate or inadequate

Requests for Special Consideration must be made in writing by the student within 5 days of the exam and must include supporting documentation such as written confirmation from the exam officer or proctor. If a student is unable to attend an examination due to personal illness, accident or bereavement, the AWS will work to transfer the student to an alternative examination date at no extra cost. If a candidate is unable to attend an examination due to circumstances outside their direct control, they should notify AWS as soon as possible, and complete a request for Special Consideration form along with written 3rd party evidence to support their application. This data will be protected as outlined in our data protection policy.

Malpractice, Maladministration and Sanctions Policy


Conflicts of Interest Policy


A conflict of interest is a situation in which a person is in a position to derive personal benefit from actions or decisions made in their official capacity.

These can arise in many different aspects of awarding organization activity, such as:

  • An individual whose personal interests or loyalties conflict with their awarding organization involvement
  • An individual who receives remuneration for services that conflict with their awarding organization involvement
  • An individual whose acts put WSET Awards in a position of non-compliance with its regulatory responsibilities.

Specific examples of conflict of interest include the following:

  • The undertaking of any assessment of candidates by an individual who has a personal interest in the result of the assessment for any or all individuals concerned.
  • The tutoring of candidates by any individual involved in the assessment process

Non-Discrimination Policy

American Wine School does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender expression, age, national origin, disability, marital status, sexual orientation or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all students, staff, clients, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors.

American Wine School is an equal opportunity employer. We will not discriminate and will take affirmative action measures to ensure against discrimination in employment, recruitment, advertisements for employment, compensation, termination, promotions, and other conditions of employment against any employee or job applicant on the bases of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.


American Wine School will comply with all current and relevant legislation and this policy will be monitored and reviewed annually. At the time of writing relevant legislation includes, but is not limited to:

  • The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974;
  • The Sex Discrimination Act 1975;
  • The NHS Community Care Act 1990;
  • The Disability Discrimination Act 1995;
  • The Asylum and Immigration Act 1996;
  • The Human Rights Act 1998;
  • The Sex Discrimination (Gender Realignment) Regulations 1999;
  • The Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulation 2003;
  • The Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulation 2003;
  • The Equal Pay Act 1970 (Amendment) Regulations 2003;
  • The Race Relations Act 1976, The Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000, and Amendment Regulations 2003;
  • The Gender Recognition Act 2004;
  • The Employment Equality (Sex Discrimination) Regulations 2005;
  • The Employment Equality (Age) Regulation 2006;
  • The Equality Act 2006; and
  • The Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulation 2007.


Candidates who believe they have been discriminated against should contact us in the first instance for advice.

Complaint & Appeals Policy 

This policy is intended to provide fair and prompt consideration to all student complaints. The American Wine School encourages all students to use the complaint procedure without fear of prejudice or retaliation within the limits of the preview process and with the assurance that his/her confidences will be respected. It is the policy of the American Wine School to provide an effective and timely method for students to bring forth issues and concerns. These issues and concerns may include classroom conditions, performance, policies, procedures, or problems with educators, other students, or school coordinators.

Complaint: An issue brought forth by a student which may include, but is not limited to, classroom conditions, performance, policies, procedures, or problems with educators, other students, or school coordinators.

The school director will keep all expressions of concern, the results of fact-finding and the terms of the resolution confidential. In the course of fact finding and resolving the matter, some dissemination of information to others may be necessary or appropriate.

Step One: Student must submit all formal complaints in writing. The document should describe the incident or complaint and the evidence upon which it is based. The document should describe the issue with specific facts, including: personnel involved, events, dates and other information relating to the complaint including what they have done, if anything, to resolve it to date. The complaint should be marked “Personal and Confidential” and addressed to the school director, Marianne Frantz

Step two: Marianne Frantz will handle all complaints by conferring with the student and others who either are named in the complaint or who may have knowledge of the facts set forth in the complaint. Within ten (10) working days after conclusion of the investigation, Marianne Frantz will contact the complainant.

Academic Complaints & Exam Feedback

Students asking for appeals for feedback or re-grading of any certifying exam such as WSET must contact the examination authority. The American Wine School will provide the proper forms and instructions for submitting such appeals and will follow the certifying body’s complaints and appeals process. Appeals must be made within 10 days of the student receiving the exam result.

Examples of complaints would be

  • Dis-satisfaction with teaching, facilities or administration of courses
  • Allegations of discrimination or unfair treatment
  • Falsifying results, assisting candidates with answers
  • Allowing unauthorized material into the exam room e.g. phones, notes etc.
  • Disruptive behaviors e.g. talking during the exam

Complaints against the awarding body,

Complaints against the Wine and Spirit Education Trust should, in the first instance, be discussed with the center contact as above and documented evidence will then be forwarded to The Wine and Spirit Education Trust who have their own complaints policy.

Data Privacy Policy

American Wine School takes the security of your personal information very seriously. Our privacy policy contains types of information that is collected and recorded by American Wine School and how we us it.

Information we collect

The personal information that you are asked to provide, and the reasons why you are asked to provide it, will be made clear to you at the point we ask you to provide your personal information. If you contact us directly, we may receive additional information about you such as your name, email address, phone number, the contents of the message and/or attachments you may send us, and any other personal information you may choose to provide such as reasons for deferment or reasonable adjustment.

When you create an account on the American Wine School website, purchase a course or gift certificate using the American Wine School website, or contact us or participate in classes, tastings, and events, we may collect a variety of information including your name, mailing address, phone number, email address, credit card information, date of birth, student name, and request for reasonable adjustments to provide our services. Personal data is not sold or shared, certification courses excepted.

How we use your information

  • We use the information we collect in various ways, including to:
  • Provide respective certifying bodies such as French Wine Scholar (FWS) or the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) with student data to facilitate access to online learning platforms and remote exams.
  • Send you emails about your course
  • Gain access to online classes, Voice Thread, and remote exam access
  • Send you newsletter announcements. If you don’t want to be on our mailing list, you can opt out anytime.
  • Communicate with you, either directly or through one of our partners to provide you with updates and other information relating to American Wine School, and for marketing and promotional purposes
  • Share documentation and special requests to certifying bodies (FWS & WSET) as required by their policies.


If you have any questions about this Privacy Policy, please contact us at

Cancellations & Refunds

While courses may be deferred as outlined above in our Course Deferment Policy, American Wine School does not offer course cancellations or refunds once the study materials have been shipped to the student. Should a written request for a refund occur before the materials (and exams) are ordered, a refund may be granted but it it not guaranteed. All sales are final.