Varndean College celebrates success in recent Ofsted inspection

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Varndean College, a leading sixth-form college in Brighton, is thrilled to announce the overwhelmingly positive outcome of its recent Ofsted inspection. The inspection, held in early March, has highlighted Varndean College's exceptional achievements and its unwavering commitment to providing an outstanding learning environment for its students.

The college received glowing commendations from the Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills (Ofsted) across various areas, highlighting its dedication to providing high-quality teaching, supportive learning environment, and exceptional student outcomes.

Key highlights from the inspection report include:

  1. High-Quality Teaching and Learning: Ofsted commended Varndean College for its high-quality teaching standards, noting the expertise and dedication of its teachers in delivering engaging and effective lessons that support student progress and achievement
  2. Supportive Learning Environment: Varndean College was praised for its inclusive and supportive learning environment, where students feel valued, respected, and motivated to succeed. Ofsted highlighted the college's commitment to promoting personal development and well-being as a key strength.
  3. Excellent Student Outcomes: Varndean College received accolades for its excellent student outcomes, with Ofsted recognising the college's success in helping students achieve strong academic results and progress to higher education or employment.
  4. Effective Leadership and Governance: Varndean College's leadership and governance were commended for their strong strategic vision, effective management, and commitment to continuous improvement. Ofsted acknowledged the college's robust leadership structures and their positive impact on the overall performance of the institution.
Varndean College Student UnionVarndean College Student Union
Varndean College Student Union

Ofsted inspectors reported:

Students flourish in the vibrant and highly inclusive culture staff create. They are respectful towards others, value equality, and embrace diversity.

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● Students benefit from expert teachers using their specialist knowledge to deepen students' understanding. As a result, students are secure in their knowledge and produce work that is of high standards.

● Managers provide programmes of learning for students to develop the knowledge, behaviours, confidence and resilience they need to be successful.

● Leaders have a clear and ambitious vision to provide high-quality and inclusive education for all students, including those who are disadvantaged. With staff, they share a very strong commitment to social mobility and justice and place students firmly at the centre of their work.

● Students value deeply the extensive support and care staff provide for their mental health and well-being.

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● Leaders provide students with a programme of high-quality careers information and advice to help them make informed choices about their futures.

● Students develop valuable employability skills in work experience and through the courses they undertake. As a result, students are prepared well for their next steps and progress successfully to further learning, training and employment.

Varndean College prides itself in offering excellent education catering to the needs and aspirations of approximately 1800 students and 420 adult learners. The college offers over 30 A Levels, a wide range of advanced vocational courses, a selection of foundation courses, as well as the International Baccalaureate Diploma. Adult learners can benefit from a wide range of qualification courses, including counselling, childcare and ESOL.

This outcome highlights what an exceptional place Varndean College is to study at, where students achieve excellent results, are aspirational, and flourish as part of a supportive and close-knit community.

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College Principal, Donna-Marie Janson, said: “We are delighted with the positive feedback received from Ofsted, which is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our staff and students. At Varndean College, we are committed to providing an exceptional learning experience that inspires students to flourish and achieve the very highest of outcomes. Varndean College looks forward to building on its successes and continuing to deliver outstanding education and support to its students.”

Jill Arnold, Chair of Governors added: “This report reflects our own feelings about what a great place Varndean College is to study at, recognising both the academic excellence and supportive environment it provides. Students and staff should be proud of the vibrant, welcoming community they have created.”

For more information about Varndean College, please visit

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