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Northampton College

2018 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Train teachers to design and implement teaching and learning activities, particularly in theory lessons, that inspire and motivate students.
  • Ensure that teachers use the information they have about students’ prior achievements and progress to teach lessons that enable students to fulfil their potential and excel.
  • Help teachers understand fully the potential dangers, relevant to the local area and the subject they teach, that students and apprentices face from those who hold extremist views. Ensure that they use this information to develop students’ and apprentices’ understanding, so that they can keep themselves safe.
  • Increase the proportion of apprentices who achieve their qualification within the planned timescale by:
    • making sure that assessors plan learning programmes for apprentices that consider their prior knowledge and potential
    • planning sufficiently frequent assessor visits so that apprentices receive training, assessment, feedback and targets to help them make rapid progress, and ensure that employers know what it is that apprentices need to improve so that they can support them at work
    • checking that managers and assessors monitor apprentices’ progress frequently and that they intervene rapidly when apprentices’ progress slows
    • helping apprentices to improve their written English by correcting spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors and giving apprentices strategies to help them improve these skills.

2017 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Consider carefully the key performance indicators for each different provision type when completing the 2016/17 self-assessment report. In particular, leaders and managers should review measures of learner progress to inform improvement actions.
  • Help teachers and assessors to understand better their learners’ potential so that their expectations of what learners can achieve are increased. Support teachers to plan and deliver lessons that enable all learners, including the most able, to develop quickly their knowledge and understanding.
  • Apply clear and consistent approaches to evaluating and reporting on learners’ progress so that teachers and managers can readily identify emerging problems and take steps to resolve them.
  • Improve the rate of timely achievements for advanced apprentices by helping staff to plan lessons that take their differing experiences and abilities into account, and that have sufficient pace and challenge for all apprentices. Ensure that staff provide clear and effective assessment feedback that helps apprentices identify what and how they need to improve.
  • Ensure that learners and staff understand the importance of good attendance, both for successful learning and for future employability. Revisit approaches to raising learners’ attendance and prioritise improving this aspect of their personal development.

2013 Full Inspection Report
What does the college need to do to improve further?
  • Improve attendance and punctuality by ensuring that all teachers monitor attendance rigorously, challenge lateness robustly and follow up on absence. Ensure that reasons for absence are explored fully so that barriers to students’ full attendance are overcome.
  • Improve the effectiveness of provision in business studies. Ensure that teachers plan effectively for the full range of students’ abilities and use a wide range of activities that develop students’ knowledge and understanding. Reduce the use of workshop-style lessons where students work independently on assignments with little or no new learning taking place.
  • Develop effective strategies to improve teaching, particularly in AS- and A-level subjects, so that more lessons are outstanding. Increase teachers’ use of initial assessment in planning learning. Ensure that work provides sufficient stretch and challenge for more able students. Share more fully the good practice that exists and ensure all teachers participate in peer and developmental observation processes.
  • Develop the promotion of equality and diversity in lessons by providing appropriate staff training, including suitable opportunities for promotion in schemes of work and lesson plans, and monitoring promotion rigorously through checking documentation and lesson observations.
  • Increase opportunities for students’ English and mathematical skills to be developed through their subject lessons, for example by ensuring that teachers take responsibility for improving students’ vocabulary and use suitable opportunities to consolidate and enhance students’ mathematical skills.
  • Improve target setting in classroom-based and work-based provision so that individual targets for students are specific to individuals, are clear and focused on precisely what needs to be done with short timescales applied. Ensure that these targets are followed up in a timely manner.
  • Simplify self-assessment procedures and documentation and sharpen the focus of analysis and evaluation including ensuring that the identification of areas for development is precise leading to clearly defined actions to drive further improvements.

2009 Full Inspection Report
Areas for improvement

The college should address:

  • low success rates for learners aged 16 to 18 on level 3 courses
  • low key skills success rates
  • insufficient proportion of good or better lessons
  • insufficient opportunities to accredit IT key skills for full-time learners
  • underdeveloped support for gifted and talented learners
  • underdeveloped appraisals and performance management of staff
  • insufficient use and monitoring of targets to inform college and learners’ improvement
  • inconsistent curriculum management.

2007 Re-Inspection Report
Areas for improvement
  • insufficient use of target-setting to promote the progress made by learners

2005 Full Inspection Report
What should be improved
  • retention and pass rates
  • quality assurance
  • training for governors and managers
  • identification of need and take-up of additional support for literacy and numeracy
  • target setting and monitoring of students' progress
  • teaching methods to meet individual needs in theory lessons
  • management and co-ordination of work-based learning.

Report Recommendations