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OUR STRATEGIC AMBITION FOR 2013/14 ONWARD This document outlines the College’s mission statement and our ambition for 2013/14 onward

2013 / 2014

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together


The role of the College Board is to determine the strategic direction and mission of the College in consultation with College management and staff. During 2013/14 we will start a new chapter, with a new Mission Statement and focused Ambition Statements for the College. The College continues to progress and succeed and it is important for College governors that this continues in the years ahead, providing learners and employers with a high quality experience in order to improve their lives and businesses. The Corporation Board is confident that the College will remain one of the best in the country through the achievement of the strategic plan we have put in place. Sir Bill Taylor Chair of Blackburn College

Inspiring, Aspiring, innovating innovating and and achieving achieving together together


Provide the highest quality standard of education, training and support to individuals, employers and partners to achieve their aspirations.

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Vision and

Values OUR VISION: Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

OUR VALUES: Equality – we promote equality, success and respect Excellence – we strive for excellence and realise the potential of our learners Collaboration – we work as a team and collaborate. We contribute positively to our community Commitment – we are committed to our learners

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Achieving the


Deliver outstanding teaching learning and assessment


Improve the prospects of young people and adults to gain sustained employment


To build upon the College’s financial strength and capacity in a challenging and changing external landscape

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Our Ambition Quality AMBITION STATEMENT Deliver outstanding teaching, learning and assessment. At Blackburn College students take absolute priority. The College has a holistic and inclusive approach to each and every student through tailored support in order to achieve their full potential. There is an unrelenting determination that our students will develop, achieve and progress through our culture of excellence and innovation. The drive for excellence is within a framework of support and challenge for staff and students. Staff are recognised as our most valuable asset. The College measures its success, not only in terms of the achievement of qualifications, but in the wider context of our students making a valuable contribution to society. We encourage and expect student and staff engagement to shape and design a curriculum, culture and environment which responds to the needs of current and future students. Our clear vision, communicated effectively, is evidenced by the determination, passion, commitment and success of our staff and students.

The College’s quality ambition statement includes its commitment to achieve Foundation Degree Awarding Powers, allowing the College to provide higher education bespoke to local, regional and international demands. By working effectively in partnership we will meet the interests of the areas and communities the College serves. The College’s relentless pursuit of equality, diversity and inclusion will be a key item with its Quality Ambition for 2013/14. The College will strive to maintain its ‘League of our own’ Ofsted conclusion on our approach to inclusion. The Quality Ambition Statement is supported by the Achievement Strategy, the Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategy and the Blended Learning Strategy for the College as well as a number of related policies and procedures.


Continue to improve our measures of success through innovative approaches to teaching, learning and assessment.


Embed fully the College’s approach to Student Voice and Staff Voice.


Progress positively through the scrutiny stage of the Foundation Degree Awarding Powers Process.

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Our Ambition Skills AMBITION STATEMENT Improve the prospects of young people and adults to gain sustained employment. Students leave Blackburn College with the skills, knowledge and personal qualities to achieve their potential in the work place or higher education.

Accessible information and guidance will be provided to employers on the training options available to them, promoting the value of work placements, internships, traineeships, volunteering and apprentice and higher apprentice routes. Developing curriculum routes through the levels will offer progression to sustained employment.

A focus on entrepreneurship and social enterprise in both curriculum and enrichment will create students who are not simply job takers but job makers.

Collecting and using destinations data will inform curriculum development and ensure the offer maximises positive job outcomes for Blackburn College students.

The College’s employer engagement strategy ensures that we understand and respond to local, regional, national and international training needs.

The Skills Ambition Statement is supported by the Curriculum Strategy, the Science Technology Engineering and Maths Strategy for the College and a number of related policies and procedures.

We seek feedback actively from local employers to ensure that the Blackburn College students they recruit have the skills to meet their business needs and are work-ready. Through continuous development we future-proof the curriculum, aiming to prepare students for jobs that may not yet exist. The College prioritises investment in our staff and continued professional updating and development, supporting the needs of the curriculum and business objectives.


Launch the College’s employability and enterprise strategy.


Continue to build on our training success with an even greater focus on working with employers.


Deliver improved internal progression and positive destinations for our learners.

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Our Ambition Resources AMBITION STATEMENT To build upon the College’s financial strength and capacity in a challenging and changing external landscape. The College will invest to sustain a world class campus, raising aspirations for Blackburn College students and the community thereby impacting upon the regeneration of the local economy. The College will maximise the benefits of effectiveness and efficiency to invest in student facilities and resources to enable students to achieve their potential. Through the creation of a vibrant learning environment, the College supports inspirational teaching, learning and assessment. Providing cutting edge facilities and technology equips students with workready skills. The College prioritises the recruitment of, and investment in, highly qualified staff to deliver skills to students that meet employer expectations. The sound management of finance and resources will enable the College to continue invest in an enriched learner experience, including visits, trips and competitions. The College’s approach has always been to remove the barriers to learning and to create equality of opportunity for all through an open and accessible campus and support package. Our ambition will see the innovative and personalised approach to student finance and welfare continue, with an enhanced student experience at all stages of the learner journey. Celebrating and communicating the successes of the College, in order to enhance reputation and market position, will continue to be a priority.

The College will fulfil its commitment to corporate social responsibility through engagement, partnership and participation with the local, regional, national and international community. The College will provide a comprehensive transition strategy which guides and supports potential entrants to become active, engaged and successful learners. The creation of sustainable income streams will safeguard organisational stability and ensure the focus will remain on the student experience and successful outcomes. Finally, the resources ambition will continue the College’s targeted commitment to reduce the resource intensity of learning through efficiency and innovation. The Resources Ambition Statement is supported by the Human Resources and Occupational Development Strategy, the Blended Learning Strategy, and the Property Strategy for the College as well as a number of related policies and procedures.


Deliver new buildings for the Regional Automotive Hub and Sport.


Implement a sustainable engagement strategy to ensure that learner recruitment achieves contract targets.


Produce a business development plan to achieve and increase our income targets, to ensure the effective use of resources and to invest wisely.

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

ABOUT BLACKBURN COLLEGE AND BLACKBURN WITH DARWEN KEY FACTS ABOUT OUR COMMUNITY Our Community > 148,000 people live within the borough of Blackburn with Darwen. There is a younger than average age profile with 29% of its population aged 0-19. > The large minority ethnic population represents 30% of the total population and the numbers of British Minority Ethnic (BME) school children is growing at a faster rate than the indigenous population. > The borough is ranked 17th of 326 districts in England in terms of the average score from the Indices of Deprivation 2010. Of the 148,000 residents of the borough an estimated 51% live within areas classified as being within the most 10% deprived in the country. > Blackburn with Darwen has the fourth lowest life expectancy of any local authority, significantly lower than the North West and England averages, and the gap with England has, if anything, been widening in recent years.* > Almost three in ten children in Blackburn with Darwen are living in poverty.* > 57% of school leavers achieved 5+ A*-C GCSEs (or equivalent) including English and Maths in 2012, 2% below the national average. Pakistani learners perform below the BwD average.

> 16-18 participation rates are below the regional and national average. The participation rate for 16 year olds is 86% compared to 92% nationally and for 17 year olds the borough rate is 66% compared to 84% nationally. > The Annual Population Survey reveals that 17% have no qualification, compared with 11% for the North West. A lower proportion of Blackburn with Darwen adults are qualified to level 2 or above and of these, Blackburn with Darwen adults are less likely to be qualified to level 4. > Only 22% of the working-age population of Blackburn with Darwen has a degree or other higher education qualification, significantly lower than the national average of 33%. A recent Statement of Need document by Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council suggests a 14,000 shortfall of graduates across Pennine Lancashire. > There are few large private companies, other than BAE; less than 1% employ over 200 employees. > It is within this challenging environment that the College operates and works in partnership with the Borough Council and others to make improvements to life chances within the community.

* Source- Blackburn with Darwen Joint Health & Wellbeing Strategy 2012-2015

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

> The College attracts a growing number of ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) learners with over 450 in 2012/13 and achievement rates are consistently over 90%.


> Despite relative underperformance at GCSE in the borough, the success rate of Pakistani young people is consistently strong.

> Each year the College provides learning opportunities to 15,000 students at all levels and across a wide range of sectors, meeting the needs of the local community. Over 3,000 of whom are higher education students. > A recent investment analysis undertaken for the College concluded that for every £1 spent by learners on their education at the College, £5.30 was earned in higher future wages and society received £6.40 in return for every £1 invested. > The College has a 100% success in over 100 vocational courses and a 99% A Level pass rate including 70% A*-C grades. > We have a growing number of intermediate, advanced and higher apprenticeships with timely success rates 30% above the national average.

> The College supported over 2,500 students with a learning difficulty and/or disability in 2012/13, 39% of whom were 16-18 year olds. > 96% of businesses would recommend the Training People at Blackburn College for their training needs and services. > The College has supported over 1,900 unemployed people by providing a range of short courses tailored towards local labour market needs, with 99% success rates for 2012/13.

> 50% of level 3 achievers regularly progress to higher education every year, over 1,500 learners in the last three years

> By working closely with JobCentre Plus and various local and national employers, the College has supported a significant number of people through the Sector Based Work Academy initiative, leading to job outcomes for many.

> 1 in 5 of our University Centre degree graduates gained a First Class Honours degree.

> The College is proud of its achievements and will continue its drive to support the local community and beyond.

The Planning and Monitoring Cycle


The related strategies, performance indicators and action plans that underpin the Strategic Plan are contained in separate documents which are aligned to our Ambition Statements.





Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Aspiring, innovating and achieving together


Aspiring, innovating and achieving together

Strategic ambition 2013:14  
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