Page 1

the latest news from around your College

UPDATE December 2016

DATES FOR YOUR DIARY SSG Coffee Morning in aid of St. John’s Hospice Friday 9 December 2016 10.00am-12.00pm South Bank Arts Centre

Bedford College Open Day Tuesday 24 January 2017 5.00pm-8.00pm Shuttleworth College Open Day Saturday 28 January 2017 9.30am-12.30pm

Staff Social Friday 16 December 2016 12.00pm-1.30pm Studio Theatre

02 Principal Update 03 Corporation News 03 Creative Arts News 04 Service Industry News

The Bedford Sixth Form Open Day Wednesday 18 January 2017 5.00pm-8.00pm

06 Technology News 06 The Bedford Sixth Form News 07 Shuttleworth College News 08 People News 09 Spotlight on Staff Social Group

Find us on Facebook

Find us on Twitter

Want to contribute? If you have something to contribute, please email by Thursday 8 December.

PRINCIPAL UPDATE We have lift off - part 1!

Tough on small sixth forms, tough on the causers of small sixth forms

The latest round of Open Days shows again how much the local community is interested in what we deliver.

I hope you all saw the decision by the DfE not to contest a judicial review brought by the Association of Colleges challenging the DfE decision to approve a new small sixth form to a failing school. The DfE guidance requires new sixth forms to be at least 200 students large. At present about half of all school sixth forms in the country fail that test. This is a very important victory for colleges.

The November events saw a 19% increase on the last year at The Bedford Sixth Form, a 20% increase at Bedford College and a 40% increase at Shuttleworth College. Open Day traffic turns into enrolments which is why we require everyone to be involved in them, and try to make them as informative and exciting as we can. The strategy seems to be paying off.

We have lift off - part 2!

Top staff, top students

The government’s policy on compulsory resits for students achieving grade D at GCSE English and maths at school remains problematic, but it is encouraging to see how well our teaching teams are doing compared with the sector as a whole.

It is really pleasing to report our latest student success. Harrison Dowling picked up the highly prestigious Excellence in Education gong at the Pride in Bedfordshire awards. See more on page 04.

Recent information from nearly 300 colleges (so highly representative) shows Bedford College performing very well: English resits – those achieving A*-C

Maths resits – those achieving A*-C

Bedford College






East of England



Win-win and win-loos Sometimes students just want low-tech improvements in their area. The Plumbing Centre students just wanted a decent toilet facility, so we gave it to them – win-win and also win-loos.

It is equally pleasing to report our long-serving IT Lecturer Ruth Tippell has been shortlisted for the Bedfordshire Business award for Employee of the Year. Let’s wish her well.

Bedford - going for a telly triple? Following the success of Bedford teacher Candice in the Bake Off, and Bedford dog Buster stealing the Christmas advert plaudits for his trampoline skills for John Lewis, will Bedford-born Carol Vorderman take the honours in the Jungle and make it a Christmas triple? Our town punching above its weight again!



CORPORATION NEWS The Corporation met for the first of two autumn full board meetings on 9 November. They received a funding briefing and an update on the Area Review Process. Governors are invited to a number of briefings with other SEMLEP colleges to receive further information on the process.

will include two individuals as named student governors and it is anticipated this will take place before the end of November. Those individuals will have the opportunity to shadow the governance arrangements of the College and participate as Corporation Members. All staff are asked to bring the opportunities to the attention of their students as this will provide a valuable experience for them. More information is available from Will Sparrow and the Clerk, Rachel Nicol.

The new governors have been extremely active since the start of term, attending SAR moderations, representative groups and committee meetings. They, together with other governors, are also attending various award presentations for students. Governors are always delighted to enjoy such events and if you have any dates for the diary please let the Clerk know.

The Clerk’s contact details are: Rachel Nicol (tel. 01234 291003) If you have any questions about the Corporation or any of the meetings please feel free to contact the Clerk to the Corporation or one of your staff governors, Jane Dudeney and Charlie Whewell.

The Corporation is pleased to be working with the College Executive to support the election of the Student Executive. This elected body

CREATIVE ARTS NEWS Children in Need Acoustic Lunch Our first and second year Music Performance students raised £66.52 from their Children in Need Charity Gig, held in Munch & Mocha on 17 November. This is a fantastic achievement and we are very proud of them all, and also very grateful to everyone that donated. Big thanks to Damian Clark and Lee Head for doing the sound engineering and set-up of the event. Thanks also to all the staff at Munch & Mocha for all their kind help and support.



SERVICE INDUSTRY NEWS Our pride in Sport student, Pirate ships and bumper cars for Travel & Tourism students Harrison at Drayton Manor! Harrison Dowling won the Excellence in Education prize in the Times & Citizen newspaper Pride in Bedford awards on Thursday 3 November.

The annual trips and visits programme kicked off before half term with a trip to Drayton Manor for all new Travel & Tourism students. Not only was it a great team building event for our new recruits, it was also time to test their stamina and see what our new member of staff, Faisal, was made of!

Sport tutor Tom Davis nominated Harrison for the award, after the full-time Level 3 student showed outstanding dedication and commitment during his first year. Not only has Harrison achieved distinctions in every subject, finishing with an overall distinction star, but he also won the Sport Department’s Academic Student of the Year Award and the Employability Award in recognition of his professional attributes.

Students were seen rowing the pirate ship, dodging the teachers on bumper cars and trying to get Emma on Maelstrom! For those who needed something a little more sedate, Thomas Land provided the ideal environment along with the penguins and monkeys in the zoo. After testing all the rides, students made their way past the meerkats and through the zoo to the education centre where they were given an insight into Customer Services at Drayton Manor. Not only was this a backstage peek at the park, it also helped with two upcoming assignments. Several students commented on how helpful they found the talk and Lee our speaker congratulated our students on behaviour and attitude. Not to be left out of the action, the Second Years headed down to the World Travel Market at Excel in November. The leading global event in our industry will give an insight into destination marketing, meeting experts and future employers. A range of seminars are also available along with a ride on the Emirates Airline to get there!

In addition, Harrison has worked hard outside of his course to pass on his knowledge to others in the local community through volunteering and parttime work at The Gym in Bedford. As a volunteer Schools Games Maker for Team Beds & Luton, Harrison has been involved in inspiring the younger generation in his local community to get active. Tom said: “It is rare to see such a committed student who, at only 17 years of age, is so passionate about his studies and who also takes the time to help fellow students and others in the local area. What is also incredible is that he has achieved the top grades of distinction in every subject he studied.” Harrison, who would like to become a Personal Trainer, believes his attitude and approach have been key to achieving distinctions in every subject. If he was unsure about anything that had been taught in class, Harrison was not afraid to ask his tutor to go through the topic again. Harrison also conducted his own research, outside of the classroom, to make sure that his coursework contained unique evidence. This effort was above and beyond what was expected on the course and lead to tutors nominating Harrison to undertake the additional professional coaching qualifications: Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing; Level 1 Football Coaching and Level 3 Personal Training. 04


Full-time PGCE celebrates Debenhams Lock In event its 5th year for Hair & Beauty students The Teacher Education Department has once again recruited two healthy cohorts of full-time PGCE learners for its ‘Pre-Service’ course. Bedford College is the only partner college in the University of Bedfordshire partnership to offer the one year intensive programme and learner numbers are going from strength to strength. There have now been close to 100 learners enrolled on the programme since its creation and once again we have trainees at all three main sites; Cauldwell Street, Shuttleworth and TBSF. This year we also have specialist maths, English and SEND pathways with some learners getting up to £25,000 of government bursaries to support their studies. The course is ideal for learners that want to do the course in one year full-time rather than the traditional two year part-time route. The course is successful due to the loyal group of mentors and HoDs based within the College that support the programme. There is also a clear route into employment with more than 50% of trainees going on to be employed in some way right here at the College either whilst studying or after the course has finished.

32 Beauty Therapy learners took part in a ‘Lock in’ event at Debenhams in November. They received: Skin care demonstrations from Clinique & Clarins; Make-up demonstrations from Lancome & Benefit; and eye brow enhancement demonstrations from Benefit. The above product houses handed out samples and gave learners the opportunity to try the products and receive advice on shades and ranges to meet their skin types. Some learners even made purchases.

Ofsted have recently visited the programme as part of their two stage audit and whilst the full report has not been published yet the initial feedback is positive and they seem really happy with the programme and its aims.

Learners took the opportunity to submit their CVs and were given careers information on how to apply for jobs, the standards of their appearance and training that they will receive when employed. All of the learners where engaged and seemed to be inspired, as well as happy to have gained two and a half hours of work experience.

The programme is now firmly fixed in the curriculum offer and is well supported by Ashley Spiers (Course Manager), Sam Jones (Course Tutor) and Clancy Lynch (Course Placement Co-ordinator). Any teacher across Bedford College/Shuttleworth or TBSF wishing to be a mentor for 2017-18 should now contact Clancy Lynch and register their interest.

Travel & Tourism is taking off!

If you have any news to be included in the next issue of Update please email details and an image if possible to by Thursday 8 December.

The Travel & Tourism department is proud to announce its new partnership with Swissport Aviation, meaning we are now part of the official Swissport Academy! Not only do our students get guest speakers and airport visits as part of our academy status, we are also lucky enough to have guaranteed interviews upon successful completion of the Aviation Operations course! This is an amazing opportunity for our students and for the community – places on the February start are still available. Expect to see the Swissport logo in conjunction with the Travel department very soon! 05



TECHNOLOGY NEWS Ruth wins top prize

Halloween Horror at Trinity

Bedford College and its employer associates were very much in the spotlight at the first Bedfordshire on Sunday business awards.

Just before half-term our A2 Drama students set up an Asylum in the converted church on campus, known as Trinity, for a Halloween Horror performance.

The glittering ceremony at Bedford Corn Exchange included first prize in the Employee of the Year award for our top tutor Ruth Tippell (Computing Ruth in Finals) and many other connections with those who have staff trained with Bedford College:

Visitors to the terrifying event were led from room to room in the ‘Asylum’ which all featured students performing various scary roles working on their live acting skills. Towards the end the lights all went out, sirens came on and the patients terrorised the visitors whilst they made their way to the exit of the building.

Acuigen of Cranfield, which works with law firms around the world, won the Business Innovation Award. They have ICT and Business Administration Apprentices through Bedford College.

Author Mike Carey visits

Many of the other organisations involved work with Bedford College in some way - for instance Canoe Trail who were shortlisted in the Small Business of the Year, featured in the Shuttleworth Adventure Employers event in November.

munch & M O C H A

Daily Deals Breakfast

Beans on Toast


Author and screenwriter, Mike Carey, recently visited the Sixth Form to do a reading and Q & A session for students. Mike is the author and screenwriter for the post-apocalyptic novel/film ‘The Girl With All The Gifts’ which was recently shown in cinemas. He also writes for DC and Marvel and has written a further novel called Fellside, set in a woman’s prison. Students were able to ask him questions about his career as a writer and about writing techniques; he gave lots of great advice and also kindly donated some books to the LRC.

1/2 Sausage Baguette

Each item only 99p


Small Sausage Roll

6x Chicken Nuggets

Daily 99p meal of the day



SHUTTLEWORTH COLLEGE NEWS Outdoor Education round-up Students on one of the Shuttleworth College parttime Horticulture courses have recently been planting a spring flowering bedding plant display. This Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Level 1 group showed excellent team work whilst planting the wallflowers and pansies, which are under planted with tulip and daffodil bulbs, ensuring a fabulous display of colour throughout the spring and early summer months. Students attend College for three hours per week for 12 weeks, and most then progress on to the Level 2 course that runs concurrently. These RHS part-time courses are very popular with mainly adult learners who either want to improve their horticultural knowledge for use in their garden at home, or need the skills and knowledge for their job role. Some may be considering a career change and these courses are the stepping stones to higher qualifications.

We’ve had a busy month in the Outdoor Education department. We’ve wallpapered the walls of our classroom with a world map to track our work placements and alumni, and a wall length copy of an admiral chart of the Solent to use as a teaching aid on our courses.

All hands on deck at Kingshill Farm

We also went down to the Isle of Wight to collect six Laser 1 dinghies from UKSA, which will help to develop advanced skills on our sailing programme at Grafham Sailing Club. Finally, we had our Careers and Work Placement Event on 16 November. External companies were invited in to talk to students and there was also a film festival showcasing some of the latest adventure industry films. We also had a school come in with 120 learners over two days doing practical outdoor activities, themed around their study of Kensukes Kingdom.

Horticulture students get planting for spring and summer

Agriculture students have been really busy and are already planning for spring. All the sheep have had their ultrasound scans to find out how many lambs we will be expecting to deliver in spring. The very pregnant Red Poll cattle have now come back into the barns from the fields ready for calving with several of the younger heifers getting handled and trained ready for showing. And, despite the cold weather, stock judging practise is well underway in preparation for the famous Smithfield festival where the students will compete nationally and demonstrate their ability to judge cattle, sheep and carcasses.



PEOPLE NEWS Starters and Leavers

Platform forum Platform is a forum for all members of staff to discuss topics with the College Principal, Ian Pryce. Upcoming meetings for the remainder of the academic year are as follows:

Since we last reported there have been a number of changes in staff. We have said goodbye to: Miles Joyce Salma Miah Briony Marston Sue Blackman Dave Lugg Debra Swan Shepherd Mande Jason Myhill

• Thursday 2 February 2017 – 3.30pm – 5pm, Tower Board • Thursday 9 March 2017 – 3.30pm – 5pm, venue tbc • Thursday 20 April 2017 – 3.30pm – 5pm, Tower Board • Thursday 8 June 2017 – 3.30pm – 5pm, Tower Board The topic for discussion on Thursday 2 February is: Do use of league tables work?

We are saying hello to:

Business Development, Marketing & Student Recruitment

• Do they motivate? • Do they lead to improvement?

Bethany Veale

Engineering & Building Services

If you have any questions or feedback prior to the next meeting please contact Em Lowe at or on 5331

Terry Connolly Matthew Hibbert

Finance & College Information Systems

Gemma Smith Ashwini Kudathini Basappa

Foundation & Community Learning Malgorzata Zielinkski

Student Services Nicola Turner



SPOTLIGHT ON STAFF SOCIAL GROUP (SSG) What achievements did the team accomplish last year?

What does your group do? We make life at Bedford College fun for staff! We meet on a regular basis to organise trips to the theatre, events and exhibitions, these are available for all staff and their family and friends to book on to. We also hold various events in College throughout the year to help raise money for our chosen charity, such as the Coffee Morning on 9 December for St John’s Hospice. Finally, we organise staff socials such as the one at the end of the summer term and the Christmas social.

In 2014-2015 we ran 13 events which were attended by a total of 777 people. In 2015-2016 we doubled the number of events organised and had a total of 1,552 people attend. We’ve raised over £1,000 for the Sue Ryder St Johns Hospice in Moggerhanger thanks to the generosity of staff at the events we have organised. What challenges will you be facing this year?

Who are the members of the group?

This year we are aiming to meet or exceed the number of events and staff attending. We would also like to match or exceed the amount of money raised.

Chair: Grace Kennedy – PA to Ian Pryce CBE

What is it like to work in your group?

Vice Chair: Sharon Warren – Centre Administrator Team Leader for Art & Design

Being part of the group is a lot of fun, however there is a lot of hard work that goes into arranging the events - from the original ideas through to organising all the minor details - especially when fitting this around our existing work commitments. However, we are happy to do so for the benefit of the staff.

Executive Link: Elizabeth Nash – Director, Organisation Development Members:

Any interesting facts about your group?

Samantha Bennett – Marketing & Communications Business Partner Bethany Coles – Personal Tutor Bev Cosmai – General Assistant, BCS Munch & Mocha Valentina Di Vece – HR Administrator Jane Dudeney – Personal Tutor Kevin Panter – Senior Network Support Technician Lynsey Travers – Human Resources Adviser

With such a wide ranging group, it is inevitable that there will be some interesting facts: one member previously commanded an Apollo space mission, one member has a tattoo map of the world, another member breeds gorillas in their spare time and another is a compulsive liar. Collectively we have over 100 years’ experience at Bedford College.



Update Magazine December 2016  
Update Magazine December 2016