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Darlington College

2022 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Ensure that staff set high expectations of attendance in GCSE mathematics and ESOL sessions so that more students attend frequently.
  • Ensure that apprentices’ prior knowledge in English and mathematics is identified at the start of their programmes so that staff can develop apprentices’ skills and understanding in these areas.
  • Ensure that across all parts of the curriculum, including provision for students with high needs, employers are sufficiently involved in curriculum planning and design.
  •  Provide all students with high-quality careers information, advice and guidance early in their programme, to support them to identify potential career and training routes for their chosen next steps.

2016 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Increase the number of apprentices who achieve their qualification in the planned time on subcontracted provision. Managers should monitor the progress that apprentices make on their qualifications and where progress is slow, support subcontractors to improve their provision.
  • Improve attendance in mathematics subjects for adults and for young people.
  • Improve learners’ understanding of mathematics and English in relation to the skills they need for study and work by:
    • ensuring that tutors plan learning to meet all learners’ needs so that they have a good understanding of concepts before moving on to new topics in mathematics lessons
    • helping apprentices extend their English and mathematics skills beyond that of the minimum requirements for their apprenticeship framework, so that they can develop the skills they need in their current role and for promotion at work.

2015 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Develop the variety of teaching methods to engage, motivate and challenge all learners, especially the more able and improve planning to ensure lower ability learners get sufficient support in lessons.
  • Improve preparation for work and increase external work experience opportunities to ensure learners develop good employability skills.
  • Improve assessment in lessons to ensure that all learners participate in discussions and learning activities, receive feedback on their progress and understand what they need to do to improve further; raise expectations of staff and learners, and hold teachers accountable for their learners’ outcomes.
  • Improve the leadership and management of 16 to 18 study programmes, English and mathematics, and apprenticeships, so that outcomes on study programmes for 16- to 18-year olds improve significantly, low apprenticeship success rates increase and the quality of English teaching improves.
  • Strengthen governance so that effective action is taken to address poor performance at all levels; develop rigorous monitoring and evaluation of current improvement strategies to ensure that they have sufficient impact.
  • Ensure that recently introduced performance management measures accurately identify weaker teaching and learning and take swift improvement actions.

2009 Full Inspection Report
Areas for improvement

The college should address:

  • the lack of rigour in some aspects of self-assessment.

2005 Inspection Report
What should be improved
  • retention rates for students aged 16 to 18 on level 3 programmes
  • attendance on some courses
  • level 1 provision in some curriculum areas
  • some unsuitable accommodation o some poor assessment and review practices in work-based learning
  • leadership and management in sports leisure and tourism
  • insufficient literacy, and language support in public services national vocational qualification (NVQ).

Report Recommendations