Plumpton College has been rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted for the second time running.
The college underwent a three-day inspection in March and the findings were published on Tuesday (April 19).
In her report, inspector Joanne Vyas said Plumpton students made “significant progress” and added: “They gain confidence, maturity, self-esteem and close friendships.”
Ms Vyas found the individual support offered to the students to be “exemplary”, with the entire team – from principal Jeremy Kerswell to the domestic staff – showing they were committed to enabling the youngsters to succeed in their studies.
The staff were seen to recognise that, for some of the residential students, their time at Plumpton was their first time away from home.
In a ‘thank you’ card to the residential staff, one parent praised the support given to her daughter, stating that, without them, she would not have stayed at the college “during those difficult early weeks”.
Both parents and students were quick to share their enthusiasm for the college with the inspector.
The students described the rules and expectations at Plumpton as “fair and reasonable”, while one said the residential team were “like our second parents”.
Another added: “We can go to them with anything,” while a third said the best things about being in residence was: “It is homely, the social atmosphere and it gives us confidence.”
Rating the outcome for students as ‘outstanding’, Ms Vyas said the residential students made “significant progress in their academic and vocational studies from their starting points, compared to their non-resident peers and students in other local colleges”.
As well as performing well academically, Ms Vyas said students’ social and personal development was nurtured with a range of activities such as the young farmers club, charitable events and sports.
Recognising the leadership team at Plumpton as ‘outstanding’, she said: “There is a calm sense of authority which is motivating and engaging.”
The report raised only one issue for improvement: the need for a risk assessment for the security of windows in the residential hostels.
l Plumpton College will be holding an open day on Saturday May 14, from 10am to 5pm. Entry is £7.50 for adults, £5 for senior citizens. Under 16s get in free.
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