TCAT is setting the tone for ‘high aspirations’

Published: September 14, 2016

Education watchdog Ofsted has recognised a series of improvements at Telford College of Arts and Technology.
The inspectors said teamwork was developing well across the campus, and staff were setting the tone for ‘high aspirations’ by challenging learners to improve their grades.
The monitoring report, which has just been published, looked at cross-college teaching standards, as well as governance, performance management, and apprenticeships programmes.
It says the restructured senior TCAT leadership team, and the governors, have taken ‘decisive action to improve performance across all areas of the college’ in recent months.
“The revised senior leadership team works much better as a group. Teamwork is developing well across college,” it says.
TCAT principal Jo Lomax welcomed the report, and said: “I’m delighted at the way the college is moving forward.
“We have made some significant changes since the turn of the year, and I’m pleased to see that Ofsted recognises the impact they are already starting to make in a relatively short space of time.”
The Ofsted report says information provided by the TCAT executive team to managers and governors is ‘much improved’, and feels the culture of the college has become ‘more supportive’.
It adds: “Communication channels across the college are much improved.”
Attendance levels among learners aged 16 to 19 rose noticeably during the last few weeks of the 2015-16 term – which Ofsted feels is partially thanks to changes in the college’s course planning.
The report says: “Managers have carefully planned timetables for English and mathematics to ensure that classes sit alongside vocational lessons to improve attendance.”
It also welcomes the fact that TCAT managers were challenging most learners to achieve higher grades. “This sets the tone for high aspirations,” he says.
Jo Lomax added: “Our governors and dedicated staff are fully committed to our learners, and this monitoring report proves that their efforts are making a real difference.
“We are turning TCAT into a much stronger, financially sustainable, and more dynamic organisation. This is a college which is most definitely on the up.”