Letter: '˜Outstanding' rating applies to whole group

What do words mean? Take, for example, the claim prominently displayed in the grounds of the Yorkshire Coast College on Scalby Road (now known as Scarborough TEC) that it is '˜the only outstanding college in Scarborough.'

Thursday, 2nd November 2017, 1:17 pm
Updated Monday, 11th December 2017, 9:34 pm
Can this claim be trusted or is it merely a marketing exaggeration?

Can this claim be trusted or is it merely a marketing exaggeration? Is it true to claim that Scarborough TEC is ‘an outstanding college?’

The college refers to a recent Ofsted report that gave a grade of ‘Outstanding’ to the Grimsby group of colleges. Should this grade also apply to Scarborough TEC?

If the college was separately inspected by Ofsted, would it be awarded the same grade of outstanding?

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Or is under-performance shrouded by inclusion with the much better and larger Grimsby College?

The recently published Ofsted report suggests it would not receive the coveted grade of ‘Outstanding.’ The provision at the Yorkshire Coast College campus is found by Ofsted to be “not yet of the same high standard as the rest of the group.” Ofsted recommends that “Leaders and managers should ensure that they strengthen further their focus on raising standards at the

Yorkshire Coast College campus so that all learners enjoy the same high-quality experience.”

Ofsted also notes that attendance, behaviour and results at the college are “not of the same high standard as the rest of the Grimsby group.”

The question for now is “Would the Yorkshire Coast College receive a grade of Outstanding if it was inspected by Ofsted as a stand alone college?”

It seems that it would not. In my view, this claim - that the Yorkshire Coast College/Scarborough TEC is an ‘Outstanding College’ is, possibly by accident, misleading and which I call upon the college to withdraw.

Those of us with long memories will recall occasions when much of the official information disseminated from the Yorkshire Coast College could not be trusted.

Interestingly, trust is a concept that is referred to in another government report that has not yet been reported upon locally.

Behind closed doors, government experts have been reviewing the futures of further education colleges, including Scarborough Sixth Form College and Scarborough TEC.

Amongst the recommendations is that the two colleges merge to form a single tertiary institution for the Scarborough area, although the report acknowledges that “greater confidence between the institutions” needs to develop.

John Buckley

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