Service which teaches hundreds of people in Sheffield has been praised by education watchdog

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A council-run service that teaches hundreds of people facing the greatest challenges in Sheffield has been praised by an education watchdog.

Sheffield Council's lifelong and community learning service has been rated as good following a recent visit by Ofsted inspectors.

The service oversees learning in more than 100 venues across the city and includes community and family learning, 16 to 19 study programmes, courses for learners with high needs and apprenticeships.

Inspectors rated it as good in six out of seven key areas. Its 16 to 19 study programme provision was judged as requiring improvement.

They said the council provides a wide range of programmes which successfully engages learners facing the greatest challenges to participating in learning, including those from areas of the city with high levels of disadvantage.

The inspection report added that support to ensure learners succeed is very effective Tutors and assessors use a good range of activities which ensure that learners remain enthusiastic about their learning and make good progress.

But they highlighted several areas which need to be improved upon, including increasing attendance on study programmes and giving more helpful feedback to learners and apprentices so that they have a clear understanding of what they need to do to improve their work

Coun Jackie Drayton, Sheffield Council’s cabinet member for children, young people and families, said: “It’s wonderful that we’ve retained the good rating following a tough and rigorous Ofsted inspection.

"Our lifelong and community learning service provides a vast range of opportunities to thousands of people across the city including courses in adult skills, family and community learning, apprenticeships and courses for people with complex needs.

"This fantastic result is testament to the hard work of all our staff and providers across the city who ensure all our learners achieve their full potential.”