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Staff and learners at Lancashire Adult Learning are celebrating after receiving an ‘outstanding’ rating in a new Ofsted inspection.

The college is part of the Nelson and Colne College Group, which is the first in Lancashire to receive the highest possible Ofsted accolades under the new inspection framework.

The Ofsted inspection team visit a wide range of the community venues in March 2022 that Lancashire Adult Learning uses to deliver its invaluable teaching and learning sessions.

Whilst at these venues the inspectors spoke to staff, students, apprentices, governors and employers.

The team of 10 inspectors confirmed that ‘learners and apprentices love being learners at the college’ and leaders and management across the group ‘provide a high-quality education through which learners and most apprentices achieve their full potential. Learners and apprentices who study at the college do exceptionally well’.

Lancashire Adult Learning, alongside Nelson and Colne College and Accrington and Rossendale College as part of the Nelson and Colne College Group, is now the only college in Lancashire to be graded as ‘Outstanding’.

Inspectors identified that ‘adult learners benefit enormously from an ambitious curriculum’. They also identified that these learners ‘develop their subject knowledge and build resilience and motivation’ alongside being ‘passionate and highly motivated about their education and futures’.

The inspectors also noted that ‘teachers and trainers create highly supportive, calm learning environments in which learners and most apprentices thrive. Learners rapidly build their confidence and produce work of a very high standard. They describe their teachers and trainers as inspirational and knowledgeable’.

Speaking following the publication of the report, Assistant Principal for Adult Learning Andy Parkin said:

“I am beyond proud to be a part of this extraordinary college. The work the teachers, trainers and support teams do on a daily basis is all focussed on our learners and their successes and I am just delighted that Ofsted recognised that in their recent visit.”

Commenting on her pride in the report, Principal and CEO of Nelson and Colne College Group Amanda Melton CBE said:

“Our focus has always been to provide the very best education and training to learners and apprentices across Lancashire and now, after two mergers and a pandemic, Ofsted has recognised us as an ‘Outstanding’ group of colleges.

“This is a phenomenal achievement for Lancashire Adult Learning, given the commitment we have shown to supporting the College since the merger. All of the colleges within Nelson and Colne College Group are now outstanding and this is a true testament to the hard work, dedication and talent of all of our staff and students.”

“We hope everyone connected with Lancashire Adult Learning, and the Nelson and Colne College Group will join us in celebrating this success. The college has an exciting future ahead and we remain committed to this level of excellence for all our current and future learners, across all of our colleges.”

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