Ofsted rates Adult Learning as a good provider

  |  Published: Dec 21st 2015
Charlotte Haenlein
Charlotte Haenlein

Adult learners in Bucks are benefiting greatly from good quality teaching that is developing their skills beyond their expectations, says Ofsted.

Buckinghamshire Adult Learning was rated as a ‘good’ provider following a visit by education inspectors over several days in November.

Officials and councillors say they are delighted by the conclusions of the Ofsted report, describing the rating as a ‘great achievement’.

Martin Tett, Leader of Buckinghamshire County Council, said, in a message to the Adult Learning service: “This is, in my opinion, an ‘outstanding’ achievement in difficult financial times. Please let the team know how proud we are of them.”

The main focus of the inspection was the impact Adult Learning has on its learners, and some of the key points from the report were:

  • Overwhelmingly, learners are positive about their learning and take much pride in their progress. Most learners develop high levels of confidence and self-belief in their own achievements.
  • Standards of learners’ work are at least good and in many cases outstanding. For example, on leisure courses, learners produce artefacts of intricacy and beauty that often exceed their initial aspirations and expectations. Language learners develop good communication skills and increase their confidence.
  • Learners benefit greatly from good quality teaching, learning and assessment that motivate and develop their skills beyond their initial expectations.
  • Learners gain great satisfaction from attending lessons in a friendly and respectful environment that ensures that they all have equal opportunities to contribute and grow.
  • Tutors are well qualified and experienced; they ensure that lessons are lively and engaging and that learners participate enthusiastically.

The service received an overall grade of ‘good’, with each of the six contributory grades (including Leadership and Management; Teaching, Learning and Assessment; Outcomes for Learners, and Personal Development, Behaviours and Well-being) also being rated as ‘good’. These findings confirmed the service’s own review of its performance, say officials.

During the inspection, Ofsted gave guidance on the steps Adult Learning need to take to become ‘outstanding’ and the service has proactively already begun working on these.

This guidance included:

  • Sufficiently challenging more able learners
  • Providing a clear direction for learners wishing to progress into further education
  • Producing shorter and succinct internal reports

Chris Williams, Chief Executive of Buckinghamshire County Council, said: “Congratulations on a very successful outcome from the Ofsted inspection of Adult Learning. To achieve a ‘good’ rating across all fields is a great achievement.”

The Ofsted rating was also welcomed by adult learner Charlotte Haenlein, a 66-year-old mother-of-two. Earlier this year,  she praised an ‘inspirational’ Adult Learning course at Missenden Abbey after it helped her win a coveted £1,000 bursary to develop her textile skills. Mrs Haenlein, from Little Milton near Thame, said: “I feel I have really moved on thanks to the Adult Learning course at Missenden Abbey.”

The full report can be found at:


For more information on Buckinghamshire Adult Learning, visit www.adultlearningbcc.ac.uk or phone 01296 382403.


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