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Preston College

2023 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve?
  • Ensure that learners rapidly improve their skills in English and mathematics and significantly increase the number of learners who achieve high grades in these subjects.
  • Ensure that teachers and support staff plan and track the incremental steps that learners with high needs take towards attaining their EHCP outcomes. Teachers and support staff should help learners to recognise and celebrate the steps they take towards their longer-term goals.
  • Improve learners’ attendance, particularly on level 1 courses and in GCSE English and mathematics.

2018 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Improve the quality of apprenticeships by ensuring that:
    • senior leaders put an effective quality improvement plan in place that is communicated to all staff, and progress against targets is checked closely
    • senior leaders have a good oversight of apprentices’ progress, so that more apprentices complete by their planned end date
    • managers and staff monitor apprentices’ progress closely against their individual targets and use information from the college’s tracking systems to identify and support those at risk.
  • Ensure that all teachers consider the starting points of students and apprentices and provide learning activities that challenge all students and apprentices, including the most and least able.
  • Ensure that all students and apprentices understand the importance of attending English and mathematics classes, so that they achieve their GCSE and functional skills qualifications.

2016 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Improve teaching, learning and assessment by:
    • ensuring that 16 to 19 study programme learners attend all lessons, and are punctual
    • ensuring that teachers plan lessons carefully, taking into account the starting points of learners, so that learning activities challenge all learners, including the most able
    • improving attendance and teaching in English and mathematics and quickly developing learners’ skills so that they achieve their GCSE and functional skills qualifications.
  • In order to improve standards across the college, ensure that leaders and managers closely and accurately monitor the quality of provision, by improving the effectiveness of quality assurance arrangements and the management of data.
  • Improve achievements for construction and engineering apprentices aged 16 to 23.
  • Ensure that managers and staff monitor learners’ progress closely and use information from the college’s tracking systems to identify those learners who are making slow progress; ensure staff provide timely support so that learners are able to catch up and achieve the grades of which they are capable.

2013 Full Inspection Report
What does the provider need to do to improve further?
  • Ensure that success rates improve rapidly on the minority of courses where they are below the national average, including some of the AS-level and GCSE provision.
  • Increase the proportion of high grades by ensuring lessons and work set provide sufficient challenge for learners with high levels of ability.
  • Staff and managers should take swift action with the minority of learners whose attendance is poor or who turn up late for lessons.

2011 Full Inspection Report
What does Preston College need to do to improve further?
  • Analyse and evaluate the impact of current strategies to improve success rates. Revise action plans to include more ambitious targets and associated actions so that the rate of improvement is accelerated, sustained and embedded across all of the provision.
  • Set challenging targets for learners’ progress and take action to ensure that they all realise their potential. Develop arrangements to provide management information to support the analysis and evaluation of learners’ progress based on their prior attainment and their progression between levels of study and to employment.
  • Improve the accuracy of lesson observations. Provide support for observers so that they put more focus on the impact of teaching activities on students’ learning. Develop more challenging criteria for outstanding lessons and train observers so that they are able to apply these with rigour.
  • Develop further the arrangements for setting and monitoring learners’ progress against their targets, by identifying and sharing good practice. Ensure that these are implemented consistently so that all learners understand and value the process.
  • Improve governors’ monitoring and challenge by ensuring that they are provided with sufficient information to hold a sharp and succinct understanding of the college’s provision and performance.
  • Improve the accuracy and rigour of subject and whole college self-assessment by including a more detailed and realistic course level evaluation of learners’ outcomes and the quality of teaching and learning. Improve the use of management information to enable detailed analysis and evaluation of cross-college trends.

2007 Full Inspection Report
Areas for improvement

The college should address:

  • low retention on many courses
  • low success rates on level 3 courses
  • inadequate provision in engineering
  • satisfactory curriculum management
  • the accuracy and monitoring of target setting and consistent use of data
  • governors’ systematic monitoring of academic achievement.

2005 Re-Inspection Report


2003 Full Inspection Report
What should be improved
  • the quality and reliability of management information
  • retention and pass rates
  • the deployment of resources to achieve value for money
  • the college's financial position
  • the tackling of long-term weaknesses identified at the last inspection
  • key skills provision
  • quality assurance arrangements
  • the monitoring of students' performance.

Report Recommendations