Ashton Sixth Form College is officially outstanding

DELIGHTED staff and students are celebrating at Ashton Sixth Form College after receiving the highest possible rating from Ofsted.

Following an inspection in January 2020, the college was judged as outstanding in all areas.

It makes the college the first sixth form provider in the country to convert from Good to Outstanding under the new rigorous Ofsted inspection framework.

The college has consistently been ranked in the top 25 per cent of colleges nationally over the past three years and had maintained its good status for more than eight years.

Ofsted stated: “Students are extremely well supported by staff and their peers. Pastoral and academic support is exceptional. Staff help students to achieve high grades and produce work to a consistently high standard.”

Principal Anton McGrath said: “We are all incredibly proud of the outcome of our recent Ofsted inspection. The result is testament to the hard work, dedication and talent of all our staff and students.

“Inspectors were hugely impressed with all aspects of our work. They recognised the exceptional academic and pastoral support offered to students and the wide range of opportunities aimed at developing each and every member of our community.

“They also praised our ambition for our students, praised our careers education and were impressed by the range of destinations reached by Ashton Sixth Form College students.

“We continually strive to be the best and want the best for those who choose us.”

Highlights from the inspection report also mentioned students’ behaviour is exemplary and in keeping with the college’s high expectations and values.

It adds staff help students to achieve high grades and produce work to a consistently high standard and students enjoy an extremely well-planned curriculum that teaches them much more than the knowledge they need to pass their qualifications.

The report states students achieve their qualifications and make well-informed and aspirational decisions about their next steps. Students feel safe at the college and safeguarding is a high priority.

Adult students returning to education develop their confidence and self-belief and staff accurately identify and meet the support needs of students with high needs.

In January, the college was positioned as the top college in the borough for the fourth year running in the official Department for Education league tables, which also rank the college as one of the best in the area for student progress.

Ashton Sixth Form College educates more than 2,000 students each year and has an excellent reputation in the area.

Young people join the college from more than 100 different schools across Tameside and neighbouring boroughs, alongside adult learners who study a range of adult and higher education courses.

Last year more than 93 per cent of Ashton Sixth Form College students successfully progressed on to competitive university courses, apprenticeships and employment.

Read the full inspection report online:

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