PORTSMOUTH, England, June 20, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
After being ranked No.1 General Further Education College (GFE) in England for student success and the overall top-performing college in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight on The Data Service National League Tables, Highbury College in Portsmouth is now being praised as outstanding by Ofsted. This is an impressive accomplishment for a college located in an area of poor student attainment.
According to the recent Ofsted Report, the 'outcomes for students (at Highbury College) are outstanding.' The report reads that 'retention, pass and success rates are very high for students of all ages and at all levels. They are above the national averages for all subject areas, in many cases significantly higher.'
It stated that: 'the overall retention rate for students of all ages was 98.4 per cent, compared to the national average of 88.3 per cent, while the overall achievement rate was 97.2 per cent compared to 89.8 per cent (nationally).'
Principal and Chief Executive Stella Mbubaegbu says she is particularly proud that Ofsted have rated the outcomes for students at Highbury College as outstanding. 'We focus relentlessly on our mission to enable all our students to succeed. That's part of the Highbury DNA. It's our culture as a College'.
The Ofsted Report states that 'Portsmouth is one of the most densely populated cities in the country', but highlights that despite the city being 'the fourth largest economy in the South East with a broad employment base and the national home of the Royal Navy, there are areas of high deprivation.'
Numeracy and Literacy skills in Portsmouth were cited in the Ofsted Report as being 'significantly below the national average,' and that 'adults in the city have fewer Level 2 and Level 3 qualifications...and a higher proportion have no qualifications.' Amongst Highbury College students, however, this is not the case. According to the Report, 'many students (at Highbury College) develop good work-related skills, including literacy and numeracy, enabling them to progress to employment or further and higher education'.
It goes on to say that 'many (Highbury College) students win awards at regional and national competitions. They make very good progress during their courses and achieve high rates of progression to further and higher education and employment'.
So, how has Highbury College achieved outstanding ranking?
The College's lively and interesting teaching sessions, excellent learning resources, broad subject choice, good standard of student safeguarding, equality and diversity values, high-quality accommodation and equipment were all cited in the Report as being beneficial to overall student achievement.
Student engagement and key skills also feature highly in the College's Ofsted Inspection Report. As key skills impact on employment and higher education opportunities for the learners, Highbury College ensures that they are instilled at every opportunity, thus enabling student achievement at all levels.
Ofsted highlighted that 'care, guidance and support are outstanding'and thatstudents at risk of underperforming are identified quickly and provided with strategies to succeed'.
Highbury College provides a vast range of vocational and applied academic programmes in and around Portsmouth, from entry level training courses to university-level qualifications, specialised services for business and learning in the community. Highbury College's Student Success Rates for 09/10 make the College the top general further education college in England (09/10 National LR Success Rates).
A 'National Outstanding Showcase Event' will be held by the College in the near future.
For further information about the College, visit their website at http://www.highbury.ac.uk.
SOURCE Highbury College