Lowestoft College Ofsted report results

Education inspectors have said Lowestoft College is a satisfactory place to learn, with some good features.

The Ofsted report praised the college, which has more than 3,100 students and specialises in vocational education and training, for the way its staff prepares students for the future economic and social prosperity.

It said the college's overall effectiveness is satisfactory following an inspection on November 5. It also described the level of teaching and learning as good. The report added: 'The college has good links with employers and schools. It continues to prove effective and flexible courses for local industry and responds well to the needs of new and emerging sectors, such as offshore energy production.'

Inspectors also described the quality of engineering and hospitality and catering course provision as good.

Sport, leisure and recreation courses along with literacy and numeracy and English for speakers of other languages part time lessons were rated as satisfactory.

Overall success rates remain around the national average.

Ofsted said: 'The college has a well established welcoming, open and friendly approach. Its curriculum meets the needs of the local and regional community well.

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'Leaders and managers have a clear strategic vision, which they communicate well to staff.

'The proportion of good and outstanding lessons has increased since the last inspection, with teachers providing a wide range of learning activities which encourage and sustain learners' interest.'

However the report did highlight several factors the college needs to address if it is to improve. This includes student retention rates, which are below average, and ensuring all students have sufficiently precise and challenging academic targets.

Principal Simon Summers, who has been in the post since September, said: 'Staff have worked hard over a number of years to improve standards and I think the inspection recognises that.

'Where we need to further improve is to retain the number of people who stay to the end of their courses.

'With the current difficult economic circumstances this has been a challenge, but one I think we are well place to tackle.'