A survey inspection programme carried out by Ofsted over recent months to assess ‘The impact of skills programmes for adults on achieving sustained employment’ commended Bournville College on its strong commitment in supporting and developing employability provision. The report states that ‘The college has invested significantly in developing a wide range of courses that is extremely effective in improving participants’ employability skills and helping them back into work’.
A significant part of the inspection focused on the observation of sessions, talking to participants and employers. The feedback focused on participants receiving highly effective tuition and support, development of skills and knowledge in contexts that linked well to identified job vacancies, building of self-confidence, improved team working and communication skills as well as the completion of on-line applications.
One of the pre-employment training programmes observed was delivered on behalf of the new Tesco Yardley store in liaison with the employer. The training took place at Birmingham City Football Ground for 140 participants attending 5 days a week for 4 weeks. At the end of the training, Tesco offered positions to 136 participants. ‘It is to the credit of all concerned: participants, employers, JobCentrePlus, Birmingham City Council and other partners, that this and other training programmes are so successful. However, the recognition by Ofsted is further confirmation of the college’s dedicated work’ said Frauke Marquardt, Assistant Principal. The report further states that:
‘The College has established a highly effective team of well-qualified and experienced staff who closely monitor participants’ progress in developing employability skills throughout the course. Participants, employers and tutors contribute to course evaluation and improvement planning. There is extensive expertise in the design and delivery of employability programmes’.