Skip to main content

Riverside College rated Outstanding by Ofsted

Following an inspection in early March, Riverside College, including Cronton Sixth Form College, has been given the highest possible rating by Ofsted who have judged the college to be OUTSTANDING.

This makes them the only Further Education College in the North West to achieve OUTSTANDING under the new Ofsted Education Inspection Framework (EIF).

After a meticulous review of the College, Ofsted inspectors made the following judgements:

  • The quality of education -Outstanding
  • Behaviour and attitudes – Outstanding
  • Personal development – Outstanding
  • Leadership and management – Outstanding
  • Education programmes for young people – Outstanding
  • Provision for learners with high needs – Good
  • Adult learning programmes – Outstanding
  • Apprenticeships – Outstanding

Principal, Mary Murphy, said: “We are absolutely thrilled that this glowing report recognises the tremendous efforts of our dedicated teaching and support staff who over a number of years have worked incredibly hard to consistently deliver high quality education and training.

“I am also delighted that the inspectors acknowledged the motivation and exemplary behaviour of our wonderful students, who we cannot wait to welcome back to the College as the lockdown eases.

“However, this achievement is also attributed to all the people of Halton including Halton Borough Council, Halton Head Teachers, partners, employers, the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and the young people and their parents/carers who have supported the College on our journey to outstanding over the last decade. We have never wavered from the belief that we could be outstanding and together we have made this happen.”

Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said: “I have long thought that Riverside College was outstanding and I am glad that Ofsted agrees! We have invested almost £2m in the college to help our young people get the best possible start in life. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of staff and students alike, we are definitely seeing that happen.

“Being the only ‘Outstanding’ rated FE college in the North West under the new framework is an amazing achievement and I am delighted to see our region leading the way once again.”

OFSTED praised Riverside College students by reporting:

Learners and apprentices are exceptionally well motivated and demonstrate extremely positive attitudes to learning

Relationships between learners, apprentices and their teachers and assessors are excellent

Learners and apprentices develop their confidence, resilience and strong independence skills

OFSTED was impressed by the teachers and assessors at Riverside College. The report highlighted:

Teachers and assessors use especially effective teaching and assessment strategies.

Staff at all levels have high aspirations for their learners and apprentices. Consequently, learners and apprentices who study here do exceptionally well

Teachers and assessors help learners to achieve high grades and produce work consistently to a very high standard

Teachers and trainers are well qualified and benefit from high-quality professional development that develops their subject knowledge and expertise

OFSTED gave Grade 1 Outstanding to the leadership of Riverside College. The report showcased:

Senior leaders and governors are very ambitious for their learners and apprentices

Senior leaders and governors promote especially high standards in all aspects of the college

Governors have high aspirations for their learners, apprentices and staff

OFSTED underlined the strong links created by Riverside College and the local/regional stakeholders. The report emphasised:

Learners and apprentices enjoy a wide range of courses that meet local and regional needs exceptionally well

Leaders have exceptional links with local employers and regional business groups

Assessors, in conjunction with employers, ensure that apprentices benefit from excellent and well planned on- and off-the job training

Riverside College has a diverse enrichment programme, work experience and career support. OFSTED stated:

Learners on advanced level programmes greatly benefit from the ‘prestigious universities’ programme that facilitates successful applications to universities. Consequently, most progress into higher education with a significant number going to the best universities

Learners experience a wide range of work experience opportunities and, as a result, they develop higher-level interpersonal skills

Managers, teachers and staff provide learners and apprentices with excellent and impartial careers information, advice and guidance before and during their programmes