Ofsted watch: Private provider rated grade four in first inspection

A private training provider has received a grade four in its first ever Ofsted report this week, as three other providers stayed grade at three – two for the third time.

Elsewhere, there was better news for a local authority provider which saw its grade go up from ‘requires improvement’ to ‘good’.

Training 4 U Services (UK) Ltd, a Luton-based independent training provider, was rated ‘inadequate’ across the board in a report published November 22 and based on an inspection in mid-September.

Leaders at the provider, which offers level three and four provision in a range of areas including health and social care, and beauty therapy, were criticised for failing to have “effective plans in place to improve the quality of their provision”.

They were found to have a “poor understanding of the strengths and weaknesses in the quality of teaching, learning and assessment and outcomes for learners”.

“Too many” learners failed to achieve their qualifications, and “most” made slow progress, the report said.

Adult learning provider Kingston upon Hull City Council was one of three providers to remain at grade three following full inspection this week.

Leaders were found to have been “too slow to take effective action when teaching staff underperform” since the last inspection in 2016, in a report published November 20 and based on an inspection in early October.

“Not enough” learners achieved functional skills qualifications or got high grades in GCSE English or maths, while “too few” adult learners and those on 16 to 19 study programmes progress onto education, employment or training after their courses.

However, its apprenticeship provision was rated ‘good’, and inspectors noted that apprentices made “good progress” and “strong contributions to their employers’ businesses”.

As previously reported by FE Week, two other providers were rated grade three for the third time in a row this week: employer provider Boots Opticians Professional Services Limited, and Birmingham Metropolitan College.

Wakefield Metropolitan District Council boosted its grade from three to two in a report published November 21 and based on an inspection in mid-October.

“Good-quality teaching, learning and assessment” at the adult and community learning provider help learners “develop their vocational and technical skills and their knowledge well” with “most” making good progress.

They also made good progress in developing “social and employability skills” which “helps them contribute more fully to family life and society”.

“Governors, leaders and managers provide a curriculum that is well aligned to local economic regeneration needs and that helps vulnerable, socially isolated and disadvantaged local people to re-engage with learning,” the report said.

Just one other FE and skills report was published this week: an early monitoring visit to apprenticeship provider Proactive in Partnership Training Limited.

The provider, which offers apprenticeships in business improvement techniques, was found to be making reasonable progress in all three themes under review in a report published November 20 and based on a visit in late October.

GFE Colleges Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Birmingham Metropolitan College 16/10/2018 23/11/2018 3 3


Independent Learning Providers Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Training 4 U Services (UK) Ltd 19/09/2018 22/11/2018 4
Proactive in Partnership Training Limited 23/10/2018 20/11/2018 M M


Adult and Community Learning Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Kingston upon Hull City Council 09/10/2018 20/11/2018 3 3
Wakefield Metropolitan District Council 16/10/2018 21/11/2018 2 3


Employer providers Inspected Published Grade Previous grade
Boots Opticians Professional Services Ltd 23/10/2018 19/11/2018 3 3

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