College’s Employer Partnerships Praised in Ofsted Report
Date: 27th April 2017
A Yorkshire college's strong partnerships with employers and the subsequent benefits to its students are amongst several elements singled out for praise by Ofsted inspectors.
The report lists Askham Bryan College as “Good” and as well as its impressive industry links, the specific knowledge and expertise of staff in working alongside employers and the support given to students are also highlighted.
The college has learning centres across the North of England with its main campus at York, and specialises in land-based further and higher education. It offers courses from diploma level through to higher level qualifications including degrees, with student numbers across the college more than doubling since the last inspection in 2011. Askham Bryan College has a total of 5,264 students across its eight learning centres.
Catherine Dixon, Chief Executive said: “Given the significant growth in student numbers at the college over the last few years, we are delighted with Ofsted's finding and being rated as 'good' at a time when many colleges are identified as needing to improve. The result is a testament to the dedication, expertise and hard work of our staff and the enthusiasm and commitment of our students.”
Askham Bryan College works with a broad range of industry partners including organisations such as the Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust and Natural England, the York, North Yorkshire & East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership, the North York Moors National Park, local councils, vet practices and agricultural and engineering businesses such as Bauer Engineering, Trimble and Russells (Kirkbymoorside) Ltd.
Inspectors commented that: “As a result of the excellent industry partnerships, learners are able to explore their employment aspirations and gain real work experience in a variety of settings, thereby enhancing their social and communication skills.”
The proportion of learners successfully completing study programmes is above the national rate and the vast majority of learners who complete programmes progress into employment or further education, says the report.
Ms Dixon added: “The college's apprenticeship numbers have increased by a third since 2015, rising from 639 to the current figure of 855 across a total of 23 apprenticeship courses. We are therefore delighted with the inspectors' findings as they are particularly significant as Government changes aimed at creating three million apprentices by 2020 come into play.”
Picture shows Askham Bryan College student Luke Cowton (left) with tutor Martyn Smith in the college's Agri-Tech Centre. Luke is an apprentice studying on a Level 2 course in land-based engineering.