Ofsted Praises Apprenticeship Programmes and Training of Further Education Teachers at University of Worcester


It comes after the University’s education of Further Education teachers was also rated Good by Ofsted. In that report, the Inspectors commented: “Trainees benefit from an exceptional learning experience at the University of Worcester.”

The University has long had real expertise in teaching mature students; over half the University’s undergraduate students are mature on entry particularly in such courses as Primary Initial Teacher Education, Nursing, Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy.


Strong partnerships

Through strong partnerships with employers and educational partners, the University runs a number of apprenticeship programmes, largely in health, including the Nursing Associate Apprenticeship and Advanced Clinical Practitioner Apprenticeship and is a leading educator of teachers who work in Further Education often delivering on a wide range of apprenticeship programmes

The strong culture at the University of combining high standards, academic excellence and an inclusive educational approach underpins both these excellent reports which are amongst the best to date in their respective sectors.

The Inspectors commented: “Leaders pay serious attention to transforming trainees into passionate teachers who are determined to raise the aspirations of the pupils, students and learners they teach.”

Ann Jordan, University Provost, said: “We are delighted to have achieved Good ratings from Ofsted for both our apprenticeship delivery and our initial teacher education of FE teachers. We are deeply committed to providing a range of pathways for students to achieve their full potential and to help them to succeed in their chosen careers.”


Commitment to employability

The Inspectors in both reports praised the University’s commitment to employability, in the apprenticeship report commenting: “They [apprentices] understand clearly how completing an apprenticeship can support and advance their career aspirations,” and that “Leaders have a clear focus for their apprenticeship provision, offering apprenticeships in health care which directly responds to local, regional and national priorities”. In the FE Initial Teacher Education report they stated: “Nearly all trainees who are not already in a teaching role have secured their next steps either into teaching or further study when they complete their course.”

Furthermore, in that report, the Inspectors added: “Leaders have developed a curriculum that is carefully matched to the subjects trainees teach.”

Catriona Robinson, Head of the University’s Institute of Education, said: “Further Education is a critical stage in a young person’s education journey, as well as in helping older learners to develop new and existing skills. We enjoy excellent partnerships with many Further Education providers including our lead delivery partner, Halesowen College, and see our role in educating FE teachers of the future as a vitally important responsibility in our overall mission to deliver high quality education for all.”

Craig Tucker, Assistant Principal Quality and Standards at Halesowen College, who were praised in the report as a delivery partner, said: “This report reflects the dedication, support and determination of our exceptional teachers and mentors. Their commitment has led to the acknowledgment of the standards and quality of the training by the inspectors. We take immense pride in the accomplishments of our trainees and remain focused with providing them with an outstanding foundation for their careers in the Further Education sector.

“The report highlights our success in ensuring that trainees acquire teaching expertise and develop the essential skills to meet professional standards. We are delighted by the positive outcomes, as the majority of trainees, who were not previously in teaching roles, have successfully secured opportunities in teaching or further study upon completing their course.”

The University currently has over 75 apprentices studying on its health apprenticeship programmes and in line with its Apprenticeship Strategy under the leadership of Vikki Greenfield, Director of Apprenticeships and Employer Engagement, is anticipating a major expansion in this area over the next few years.

Robert Dudley, Head of the University’s Three Counties School of Nursing and Midwifery, said: “Our apprenticeship programmes are carefully designed with our partners in the NHS in direct response to local, regional and national priorities. We work hard to ensure our curriculum is current, relevant and engaging and we are pleased that this report has identified our commitment to this.”


Read the full report