Ofsted watch: Family owned private provider slammed by Ofsted… again

A family owned business in the construction industry was hit with a grade four by Ofsted, in a poor week for all types of FE providers.

Independent learning provider Total Training Company (UK) Limited was declared ‘inadequate’ in its first full inspection, after being found making ‘insufficient progress’ in an early monitoring report published in February.

It received a grade four in every assessed area except behaviour and attitudes, which ‘requires improvement’. At the time of the inspection there were 166 adult learners and 25 apprentices across the north east and the west midlands.

The report stated that learners and apprentices “do not experience a well-planned programme of study” and they are “not supported to develop their talents or interests”.

Leaders do not have a good understanding of the quality of provision

Ofsted also found that only a “low” proportion of adult learners successfully gain employment or move onto further learning while “too many apprentices leave their programme early”.

However, safeguarding arrangements were considered “effective”.

Another independent learning provider, Development Processes Group PLC, received three ‘insufficient progress’ ratings in its early monitoring visit this week, meaning it will soon be suspended from taking on new apprentices.

At the time of the monitoring visit, 92 apprentices were on standards-based human resource apprenticeship programmes throughout England.

The leaders were found to “rely too much on their subcontractor” and to “not take full responsibility for the quality of the provision”.

The report said apprentices were not recruited to the “most appropriate programmes” and apprenticeships were not planned “effectively,” resulting in on-the-job training and learning needs not being met.

Independent learning provider Dhunay Corporation Ltd was found making ‘insufficient progress’ in all areas of its follow-up monitoring visit this week, after receiving a grade three in a full inspection last December.

At the time of the monitoring visit, there were six apprentices on the associate project management apprenticeship. The inspectorate concluded that leaders “do not have a good understanding of the quality of provision” and have “not been swift enough to implement improvements”.

No project management apprentices have achieved their qualifications within the planned timescales and although the disruption with their programmes was considered to have improved recently, the report still found that “they do not benefit from well-structured teaching and assessment”.

Independent learning provider The Academy Hub Ltd received an ‘insufficient progress’ grade in regards to safeguarding in its follow-up monitoring visit but the report said “the director of the company did not respond to inspectors’ requests to provide evidence or contribute towards the monitoring visit until after the inspection had taken place”.

Employer provider Barchester Healthcare Limited dropped from a grade two to a grade three this week. The independent health care company trains 26 apprentices.

Leaders were said not to plan the curriculum for apprentices in a logical way and it was stated that while staff are knowledgeable and experienced, they do not “assess well” apprentices’ gaps in their knowledge, skills and behaviours.

Greater Brighton Metropolitan College also fell from a grade two to a three. It was formed after a merger in 2017 and has around 3,000 learners aged 16 to 18, around 2,500 adult learners and 1,500 apprentices.

Most adult students experience “well-taught” courses and most students aged 16 to 18 on courses at level 3 do “very well” but apprentices “do not experience consistently high-quality teaching and training”.

Moreover, inspectors concluded governors, leaders and managers “have not identified weaknesses accurately or acted quickly enough to improve the quality of education”.

Southampton City College was found making ‘insufficient progress’ in one area and ‘reasonable progress’ in two others in a monitoring report, after receiving a grade three in a full inspection last year.

Governors, leaders and managers have not identified weaknesses accurately

The education watchdog criticised the progress leaders and managers had made in improving the quality of feedback that students and apprentices receive.

In more positive news, employer provider Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and independent learning provider Train2Train Limited received two ‘significant progress’ grades and one ‘reasonable progress’ grade in their monitoring visits.

Additionally, independent learning providers The West Midlands Creative Alliance Limited and Impact Futures Training
Limited both received ‘good’ grades in their first full inspections.

Adult and community learning provider Springboard received four ‘reasonable progress’ rating in a monitoring report this week, after receiving a grade three in a full inspection last year.

The other adult and community learning provider assessed this week, charity V Learning Net, maintained its ‘good’ rating in a short inspection.

Sixth Form College Henley College also received another grade two in a full inspection.

West Herts College Group, which was formed after a merger in February 2019, was found to have made ‘significant progress’ in two assessed areas and ‘reasonable progress’ across two other themes in a monitoring visit.

The remaining independent learning providers received ‘reasonable progress’ across the board in their monitoring visits.

These were: Abbeydale Vetlink Veterinary Training Limited, Dove Nest Management Training and Development Limited, Kiwi Education Ltd, North London Garages GTA and Whitby & District Fishing Industry Training School Limited.

Independent Learning Providers Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Abbeydale Vetlink Veterinary Training Limited 31/10/2019 20/11/2019 M N/A
Development Processes Group PLC 15/10/2019 19/11/2019 M N/A
Dhunay Corporation Ltd 16/10/2019 22/11/2019 M 3
Dove Nest Management Training and Development Limited 31/10/2019 22/11/2019 M N/A
Kiwi Education Ltd 31/10/2019 20/11/2019 M N/A
North London Garages GTA 16/10/2019 20/11/2019 M 2
The Academy Hub Ltd 30/10/2019 19/11/2019 M M
The West Midlands Creative Alliance Limited 08/11/2019 21/11/2019 2 M
Total Training Company (UK) Limited 01/11/2019 22/11/2019 4 M
Train 2 Train Limited 06/11/2019 21/11/2019 M N/A
Whitby & District Fishing Industry Training School Limited 07/11/2019 20/11/2019 M 2
Impact Futures Training Limited 11/10/2019 21/11/2019 2 M


Sixth Form Colleges (inc 16-19 academies) Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
The Henley College 25/10/2019 18/11/2019 2 2


Adult and Community Learning Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Springboard 31/10/2019 19/11/2019 M 3
V Learning Net 31/10/2019 19/11/2019 2 2


Employer providers Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Barchester Healthcare Limited 24/10/2019 18/11/2019 3 2
Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust 23/10/2019 19/11/2019 M N/A


General FE colleges Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Greater Brighton Metropolitan College 11/10/2019 18/11/2019 3 2
Southampton City College 23/10/2019 18/11/2019 M 3
West Herts College 06/11/2019 18/11/2019 M 2

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  1. Colin Gallacher

    Yet again opportunist politicians are ranting on about creating apprenticeships to grab headlines, without the slightest idea as to the delivery or reference to a decade of widespread incompetence in many providers authorised to deliver. Ofsted doing a great job of uncovering some, but who is checking the checker when the loss or damage to individuals lives, small business’s and communities, has already been done. Fake promises abound.
    A pity FE Week articles aren’t more widely read.

  2. John Broadhurst

    Yet again another failed Ofsted for Total Training for who West Midlands Combined Authority were one of their main providers for AEB. A disgraceful decision to have this provider and serious questions need to be asked on what basis were they chosen when there was providers who had much better track records and Ofsted grades than them.