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Ofsted report - a remarkable transformation

Monday 17th of December 2012

The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) has told Kirklees College it has made a "remarkable transformation" in 18 months, as it published its report announcing an overall ‘Good’ grade for the college.


​Performing arts students celebrated their results this summer
​Performing arts students celebrated their results this summer

​College staff are celebrating the publication of the re-inspection report which moves the college from its overall Grade 4 ‘Inadequate’ in May 2011, to a Grade 2 ‘Good’ college with a number of ‘Outstanding’ features including college leadership and management.

Kirklees College understands that it is the only further education college to move from ‘Inadequate’ to ‘Good’ at re-inspection in the last ten years.

Ofsted inspectors spent a week at Kirklees College in November to carry out a re-inspection and the official report was published on Friday 14 December. The report’s main findings highlight the high levels of student success, the excellent support available to students and the benefits of teachers with relevant vocational expertise. The summary of key findings included the following statements:

  • Learners achieve high levels of success.
  • Teachers are vocational experts and learners benefit greatly from their first-hand industry knowledge.
  • Learners develop good skills, knowledge and understanding that make a big difference to their employment prospects, career success and chances of moving to university.
  • Learners who are disadvantaged or who have been less successful at school make great progress due to the excellent support they receive.
  • All ethnic groups succeed equally well.
  • The principal has spearheaded a remarkable change in the culture of the college; now only the best is good enough. Other leaders, managers and staff have risen to the challenge and they feel more accountable and valued.

All the curriculum areas of the college that were inspected were found to be ‘Good’ or above.

Peter McCann, who joined the college as principal in May 2011, said “We’re delighted that Ofsted have given us the endorsement the staff deserve. The college has some really great people with a passionate commitment to our community and our students.


“We believe that every student who stays the journey with us deserves success. We also know that the sooner you respond to a student who needs help, the more likely they are to stay and succeed and this Ofsted report is a ringing endorsement of the high level of support available to students at Kirklees College.


“The Ofsted inspectors agreed almost word for word with our own college self-assessment report; a sure sign that we have been sufficiently self-critical and are working professionally to continue improving.


“I’m optimistic that with the results we are seeing at the moment, our own self-assessment next year will demonstrate that we are operating as an ‘Outstanding’ further education college, something we can all be very proud of. When we move to our new centre at the Waterfront Quarter in 2013, I honestly believe we will be as good a college as you will find anywhere.”


In October 2012, Kirklees College reported record pass rates of 96 per cent for 2011-12, an increase of 11 per cent since 2009-10 (85 per cent). The college also reported that 93 per cent of students stay in college to complete their courses which is above the national average and an increase of 12 per cent since 2009-10. This moved the college up the national league table for further education and into the top ten performers.


Peter added, “I think it’s fair to say Kirklees College is very important to the community. We have shown that we are responsive to our employers, our local authority and our students both in further and higher education and we must remain this way to help Kirklees to flourish.


“We will continue to strive to be even better each day in every way, but this report is a wonderful endorsement of the progress we have made to date.”

To see the full report click here.

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