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Lancaster and Morecambe College celebrate latest Ofsted report

Posted: 15.05.2020

Staff, students and governors at Lancaster and Morecambe College are celebrating their latest Ofsted inspection which graded the College as GOOD and recognises the improvements which have been introduced since their previous visit in 2018.

A team of Inspectors spent 4 days on the campus in early March and undertook a comprehensive inspection of all aspects of College life, concluding that students were keen to learn, felt fully supported and were prepared to progress onto employment and higher education.

Inspectors applauded the College’s inclusive curriculum, which fully meets the needs of employers, learners and apprentices and incorporates sector-specific work placements and careers guidance. They noted the strong and sustainable relationships the College continues to develop with local community groups and businesses, highlighting LMC’s central role as a strategic partner with Eden Project North.

Staff were praised for helping to build confidence and motivate learners, fostering a calm, safe and respectful environment and providing effective and skilful support.

The inspection team met a wide range of students & apprentices during their 4-day visit, including a number of adult learners, and were impressed with their commitment and enthusiasm.

“Learners say that they have fallen in love with learning again and their programmes help them to achieve their full potential.”

Principal, Wes Johnson:

“I am thrilled that the inspection team from Ofsted recognise that the College is delivering on the commitments made in our strategic plan – to be shaped by our employers, to be rooted in our community and to deliver positive outcomes for all.

During my three years at the College I have really valued the fantastic commitment of our wonderful team in delivering the best outcomes for our College and community; great credit has to be paid to all staff, students and governors in achieving this outcome.”

The glowing Ofsted report isn’t the only recent success LMC have to shout about. Last month the latest national apprenticeship achievement data was released and it placed Lancaster & Morecambe College in the Top 20 FE Colleges in the country. Charlotte Rawes, Director or Apprentices and Employer Engagement, feels this success is down to the “strong and sustainable relationships” the college has built with local employers:

“Ofsted rightly recognised the excellent success and achievement of our apprenticeship provision and I am proud that we have increased our apprenticeships provision over the last 18 months by 22%, whilst continuing to improve the quality and achievement rates.

The Ofsted “Good” judgement fully endorses our apprenticeship and employer led provision, and these are fantastic results which we will continue to build on, working closely with local businesses across all sectors.”

Whilst the local and national landscape has very much shifted in the 9 weeks since the Ofsted inspection was carried out, the college’s commitment to its learners and the wider community remains as focused as ever. Courses are being taught on-line and managers are currently consulting with all staff to develop strategies to ensure that appropriate systems are in place for the new academic year. Applications for September 2020 are being processed daily and the College is introducing a range of on-line advice sessions and virtual open days, for prospective students and parents.

Wes Johnson feels that, despite the challenges the FE sector currently faces, the College is in a strong position to continue to build on the its current success;

“The strength and commitment of the Lancaster & Morecambe College community continues to shine through since our inspection. I am proud that, during the Covid-19 lockdown, the College has remained open every day to meet the needs of its most vulnerable students, manufactured masses of PPE for local health and social care providers and, in partnership with Eggcup, has produced over 400 ready meals per production day for the most vulnerable in our community.

We look forward to welcoming existing and new students back into college once the lockdown situation safely allows, as they continue progressing toward their chosen careers”

See Wes Johnson's full statement regarding the report here.