Rotherham college’s delight at inspectors’ praise

Rotherham College staff and students celebrate their Ofsted inspection rating.
Rotherham College staff and students celebrate their Ofsted inspection rating.
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A South Yorkshire college has been awarded a ‘good’ grade from an education watchdog – for the first time in 21 years.

Rotherham College of Arts and Technology was given the overall rating – with two departments achieving the top mark of outstanding – in its latest Ofsted report.

Rotherham College staff and students celebrate their Ofsted inspection rating.

Rotherham College staff and students celebrate their Ofsted inspection rating.

Managers were praised for ‘reinvigorating’ teaching and learning, while inspectors said the proportion of students achieving their qualification had risen significantly in four years.

It is the first time the college has had a good rating since it left local authority control in 1992.

Gill Alton, college principal and chief executive, said: “This brilliant outcome is not just great for the college, but a massive boost for education in Rotherham and efforts to take the town forward.

“In awarding these grades, Ofsted is confirming that, not only are Rotherham students performing above the national average, but that our tutors and staff are delivering excellent learning and support that helps our students move on in their careers, into jobs or on higher education courses .”

Construction, and visual and performing arts, were the departments to be classes as outstanding.

Ofsted also recognised the impact of £15 million of investment the college has made, resulting in ‘improved facilities and learning resources to benefit students’.

Ms Alton said the college hoped to become outstanding in future.

Attendance, retention rates and success on some courses were highlighted as areas of further improvement.

n Visit http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/inspection-reports/find-inspection-report/provider/ELS/130527 for the full Ofsted report.