College’s ‘Good’ news for local economy

East Coast College

East Coast College has confirmed its position as one of East Anglia’s best FE colleges after being rated ‘Good’ by Ofsted. This is a huge accolade for the College, recognising it’s role in inspiring the workforce of tomorrow. The leadership team are proud of the resilience and ambition that the workforce has shown in achieving this success and of the investment and partnership working with the local business community.

Any merger, either in business or education, produces significant challenges. East Coast College (ECC) has gone from strength to strength since its merger in 2017. It has stood out, where a number of colleges in similar situations have struggled and underperformed. This is thanks to the guidance of dedicated leaders and teaching staff, as well as its relationships developed with local businesses.

Peter Aldous, MP for Waveney, was quick to celebrate the college’s accolade’ “This is great news and I congratulate everyone at East Coast College for this tremendous achievement. A progressive and successful further education and 6th form college is vital to the future of Lowestoft and Waveney, so as to give our young people every opportunity to realise their full potential and to fully contribute to the area’s economic regeneration. I look forward to continuing to work with the College to build on this success.”

ECC stated it prides itself in developing students beyond qualification guidelines, so they can leave as well-rounded capable individuals, ready to enter into the workplace. Ofsted’s report found that students have a good attitude to learning, being able to study effectively and take responsibility for their own progress. The report found that students and apprentices participate well and persevere to achieve.

John Dugmore, CEO of Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, shared what this accolade means for the local economy, "This achievement is an unambiguous and welcome recognition of the continuing strides being made by East Coast College in providing the best education possible for its students.

"The College has an absolutely pivotal role in ensuring that all employers in the area, but especially in the growing energy sectors, can be assured of a pipeline of well-qualified, top-skilled, work-ready and resilient young workers.

"As the voice of business throughout Suffolk, we congratulate East Coast College on its success."

East Anglia is a leading region for STEM related jobs, with over 50% of the UK’s offshore wind energy being produced off the Norfolk and Suffolk coastline. Many of the necessary skills and training required for these jobs are taught at ECC. Ofsted celebrated ECC’s provision of a specialist and up-to-date curriculum, developed in partnership with local employers.

The college’s world-class facilities, such as the Energy Skills Centre, aren’t just exclusive to those in further education. ECC also offers training and development to the region’s Energy, Maritime and Engineering sectors.

Investment from New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership was pivotal in making these facilities a reality. Chris Starkie, CEO, said, “This is good news for East Coast College, its staff, students and local businesses.

“We are delighted to have invested £10m from our Growth Deal with Government in the College’s new Energy Skills Centre, which is an excellent example of the College and partners developing an innovative solution to support the future needs of our energy sector.”

Simon Gray, CEO of the East of England Energy Group, celebrated the college’s achievement, “EEEGR is delighted to hear that East Coast College has achieved this accolade which speaks volumes about the hard work and dedication of the students and staff of the college. It’s great to have a world class seat of learning on our doorstep and a resource that we can be proud of and rally behind. Congratulations on this great achievement”

The College is delighted with this outcome and will work to further embed and build on this in collaboration with all its partners. As it is ambitious to push the boundaries even further.