10 reasons to choose B&FC

Published on 22/04/2020 by DTHACK

Considering your next move after school? Here are the top 10 reasons to choose Blackpool and The Fylde College.

We're in England's top 3% colleges for student achievement

National Achievement Rate Tables (NARTs) data is used to compare performance between all General Further Education colleges (GFEC) in England.

It's published by the Department for Education and in March 2020 ranked B&FC the fifth highest achieving college in ENGLAND!

This is the sixth consecutive year we're up there in that top 3% (of 172 colleges).

So this obviously shows that we've got brilliant teaching standards, great results, and good facilities. It's a glowing endorsement of everything we offer at B&FC.

We have 100% pass rate across a lot of our subject areas

This is all due to the support we have available - as well as obviously our brilliant teaching facilities.

These actual pass rates speak for themselves. No matter the challenges faced, students are achieving the best results.

We're going to be there to help support and push you to do your absolute best. 

We're an Ofsted Grade 1 Outstanding college

I'm sure all of you have heard of Ofsted.

Ofsted is the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills. They inspect and regulate services that care for children and young people, and those providing education and skills for students of all ages. Every week, they carry out hundreds of inspections and regulatory visits throughout England.

In the most recent Ofsted report that we had, we were marked Grade 1 Outstanding. That's the highest you can get!

We're TEF Gold

TEF stands for Teaching Excellence Framework. This is a measure of our degree-level course quality.

So as well as doing our Level 3 courses (equivalent to A Levels), we also offer degree-level courses, to which you can progress.

And the Teaching Excellence framework has ranked us as gold, which is the highest award you can get in that as well!

Guaranteed placements

We really care about what you're going to do after your studies, which is why we make sure you have professional experience as part of your further education course.

All these courses include a guaranteed placement. This is chance to go into the real working world to try out skills that you're learning with us in a relevant environment - and get practical life experience as well.

  • On our Level 2 and 3 courses you'll have a minimum 20-hour work placement to try out those skills you're learning.
  • With an apprenticeship you'll be going straight into the workplace, working about 80% of the time and earning a wage as well.
  • And then with our T Levels, which I'll tell you a little bit more about later, you'll do a 350-hour placement - that's about 20% of your course in the workplace, and 80% at college. 

For all of our courses, you will work with an employer who we already partner with, or someone that you want to work for.

Career-focused courses

All of our courses are work, job, career-focused. All about what you go on to do afterwards.

We care about you having an amazing time while you're studying with us, but it's also really important that you can go on to do the achieve as much as you possibly can.

So our goal is getting students into university - whether with us, or another great provider of degrees; and/or getting students into the best jobs available.

We also have extra support in applying for jobs and mock interviews and all that sort of thing to make sure that you are totally prepared for the real world after college.

Most of our courses, as well as our Level 3 Triple Diplomas and T Levels, are equivalent to A Levels and will set you up for university as well as higher or degree apprenticeships. They can obviously also get you straight into the workplace as well - whatever it is that works for you.

Just as a little side note, I'll tell you a little bit more about those T Levels I mentioned earlier.

  • T Levels are new qualifications. We've been working with employers to make sure they are employment-focused.
  • 20% of the time, you'll be in a work placement.
  • There are five T Levels starting in September; Digital; Construction; Childcare and Education; Science; Health; and 2 more available from September 2022; Business; Engineering.
  • We offer the most T-level options in Lancashire!

High-tech facilities

We've got a number of different campuses with great facilities that we are continually investing in to ensure we bring you the most up to date tech that you will find the same industry standard in the workplace (we've got the same equipment used by Rolls Royce!).

We have a lot of simulated workplace environments - from a healthcare training room, nursery, and restaurant for our catering students to run that is open to members of the public, to a ship's bridge simulator.

Come and see our state-of-the-art photography studios, the largest construction skills centre in the north west and the multimillion £ Advanced Technology Centre at our Bispham Campus which has got amazing resources for engineering and automotive students.

And that's just some examples of some of the incredible equipment and technology that we've got available.

The FE Plus Award

This is an award that takes into account everything you do at college.

It's not just about the studying and what you do on your course. It's everything that you do on top of that, as well.

The award is great for putting on job and university applications to show you have a lot more going for you on top of your qualifications.

The FE Plus Award includes things like your volunteering, and taking part in clubs and societies with our Students' Union, any part-time work, charity work, getting involved in competitions, all that sort of thing. There are many different activities you can put towards getting this award.

Student support

There's so much support available for our students. Every one is different and it's important you let us know the support you need so we can get a plan in place for you.

We want to break down any barriers in the way of education. Your education is obviously the most important thing to us - so if you need financial support to complete your studies, talk to us and we'll try and work something out. Depending on your circumstances, we may provide things like a free transport pass, access to bursarys, or support towards meeting essential costs.

We also have a free bus that comes in from Poulton-le-Fylde to Bispham Campus and takes you back to Poulton at the end of the day.

When it comes to learning support, you will get a Progress Tutor who will support your studies. Think of your Progress Tutor a bit like a Form Tutor - someone you can meet regularly and talk with about your progress and wellbeing.

You will have people who know you individually and can really help you fit in. Your wellbeing is a huge priority and we offer support so you not only study well, but feel your best.

We also offer free breakfast to all students. Eligible students will also get a free lunch. So if you're on free school dinners at the moment, you may be able to continue receiving those.

We have careers advice, helping you with mock interviews and applications and loads more things. Our Careers team can support you with getting part time jobs or going into employment after college.

We also have very specialised support for young carers, young parents and care leavers. Just let us know your current situation as part of your application and we'll let you know what you can get.

Future prospects

Not only do we aim to make sure all of our students enjoy their time studying with us, but also go on to be successful when they leave as well, something we are very good at is getting our students into the most amazing opportunities..

I've been doing a lot of work with our alumni. And if you keep a little eye on my Twitter feed, you'll be able to see a lot of their stories as well as what they've gone on to do.

For a lot of our students, their next step is to go on to our University Centre and do a degree-level course with us.

We guarantee if you pass one of our Level 3 courses you will get a place on a B&FC degree-level course and get a degree issued by a UK Top 10 university, our partner, Lancaster University.

Staying at home to complete your degree studies also makes getting a degree cheaper too as you don't have additonal accommodation costs to cover, also taking into account that B&FC degrees are slightly more affordable than the average UK university.

Importantly, nine out of 10 B&FC graduates are in work or further study within six months of graduating as well.

We work closely with employers, and with you as an individual, so we can be sure that you are as prepared as you can be for the real world and achieve the level of success you want!

The most important thing is ask questions.

Remember when making the decision about which is the right next step for you,  research all your options, ask as many questions as you want and then you'll find the way that's right for you!

We can't wait to see you at B&FC!

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