Inspectors praise high quality education.

Staff, students, governors and parents at Barrow Sixth Form College are celebrating after Ofsted rated the college as ‘good’ across the board and awarded a sought-after ‘outstanding’ for law in Spring 2015.

The government inspectors praised the ‘enthusiastic and passionate teachers’, ‘high quality provision’ and ‘effective support’ for students which was successfully helping them to progress to university and employment.

Principal David Batten paid tribute to everyone involved and said it was a positive for the whole community. “We are delighted that inspectors have graded us good or outstanding in every single area of the college and particularly pleased that around a third of our teaching was classed as outstanding,” he said. “The inspectors recognise that we have high expectations of our students and work hard to raise aspirations and support them to achieve their goals. They also commented that ‘a culture of respect and positive relationships pervades the college’ which perfectly reflects our unique specialist sixth-form environment.”

ofsted - barrow sixth form college

Overall Effectiveness: Good 2
Outcomes for learners: Good 2
Quality of teaching, learning and assessment: Good 2
Effectiveness of leadership and management: Good 2

  • Enthusiastic and passionate teachers are committed to delivering high-quality provision
  • Staff provide highly effective support, advice and guidance which result in a high proportion of students progressing to the next stage of education or employment
  • Good and well-considered actions by senior leaders and managers have secured improvements to teaching, learning, assessment and outcomes for students
  • Students make good progress
  • Teachers carry out good monitoring and assessment of students’ learning; planning for further improvement is particularly effective in raising students’ achievement
  • Increasingly effective governors successfully challenge senior leaders and hold them to account for improving the provision
  • The majority of students develop good attitudes to work and produce good quality coursework. They develop a good range of personal, social and work-related skills.
  • Many students come to the college with low prior attainment and quickly improve their confidence and study skills.
  • Students participate in a good variety of enrichment activities, including work experience, which prepare them well for their next steps in education or employment.
  • A high proportion of students, many the first in their family to do so, enter higher education. Increasing proportions apply to and take up places at prestigious universities.
  • Developments to the curriculum enable students to follow more varied programmes, which have helped a good proportion to move directly into employment or apprenticeships.
  • The quality of teaching, learning and assessment is good reflecting the good outcomes for students.
  • Students make good progress, an improvement on previous years, because of much improved teaching and rigorous assessment and monitoring of their achievements.
  • Teachers have high expectations of students. They set students challenging targets, motivating them well to aspire to achieve high grades.
  • The college provides good additional study sessions and one-to-one coaching for all students. These are particularly effective for students who aspire to achieve the highest academic grades.
  • The college has developed good partnerships with local employers and use these well to provide students with relevant work experience. Teachers support students well to use this experience when writing statements for university applications or to apply for jobs.
  • Access to appropriate work experience has helped students to progress into professional roles such as in medicine and veterinary practice and into higher apprenticeships in the pharmaceutical, chemical and engineering industries.
  • Students receive regular and good individual tutorials
  • A specialist teacher and personal performance mentors ensure students receive good impartial careers advice and guidance.
  • A culture of respect and positive relationships pervades the college.
  • As a result of outstanding teaching and assessment, students develop excellent knowledge and understanding of legislation and case law; the very large majority of students, many with low prior attainment, complete their qualification and achieve high grades
  • Experienced, enthusiastic and highly knowledgeable teachers have very high expectations of all students and plan lessons to ensure that all students take part in fast paced lively activities
  • Teachers support students particularly well to help them achieve high grades
  • Teachers give students excellent detailed and thorough written feedback on their work helping them identify what they have done well and how they can improve
  • Teachers help students to develop good English reading and summarising skills; for example when reading letters from clients then can identify points of law accurately
  • Teachers and personal progress mentors give students outstanding career advice and guidance helping them make informed choices about their progression
B6FC OFSTED - law outstanding