Council’s adult education service making ‘significant progress’

22 January 2024

Significant improvements in education for adults have been recognised by independent inspectors with wide-ranging work helping to ensure the service is more effective for communities across North Yorkshire.

The focus of a recent monitoring visit by Ofsted was to evaluate the progress made in resolving four areas for improvement identified during a previous inspection in February last year.

Now, it has been recognised that North Yorkshire Council has made progress against the four themes outlined in last year’s inspection:

  • Ensuring processes are in place to maintain quality in adult education.
  • Progressing and aligning the curriculum.
  • Improving written communication in apprenticeships.
  • Integration of fundamental British values into adult learning.

Reasonable Progress:

  • How effectively have leaders implemented quality assurance processes to improve their oversight of the quality of education and swiftly identify where improvements are needed?
  • How effective have leaders’ actions been in ensuring that all apprentices receive highquality education and training that helps them to develop accuracy in their written communication?


Significant Progress:

  • How successful have leaders’ actions been in ensuring that the curriculum is clearly and consistently aligned to the strategy for all learners to make progress in their careers and lives?
  • How effective have leaders’ actions been in ensuring that the curriculum for adult learners enables them to gain a deeper understanding of fundamental British values and successfully. apply these to their own lives?



The Ofsted report from the monitoring visit in December 2023 highlighted that the council’s actions are already having a beneficial impact on learners. The inspectors noted that the improvements are sustainable and based on thorough quality assurance procedures for adult learning and apprenticeship provision.

The report highlighted that career progression is a focus with education and training programmes having a clear pathway. The Ofsted report noted that tutors engage in rich discussions with learners and apprentices, facilitating comprehensive career planning which sets clear goals and successfully addresses identified skills gaps.

The adult learning curriculum has also been praised for deepening the understanding of fundamental British values. The Ofsted report noted the fact tutors effectively utilise real-world events to integrate democratic principles into various subjects.

While progress has been made in improving apprentices’ written communication skills, North Yorkshire Council recognises the need for further training. Apprenticeship assessors have completed valuable training, particularly in correcting spelling, punctuation, and grammar. Apprentices now demonstrate increased proficiency in internal and external written communications.



North Yorkshire Council’s executive member for education, learning and skills, Cllr Annabel Wilkinson, said:

The recent monitoring visit and subsequent report reflects our dedication to providing quality education and ensuring continuous improvement.

We are committed to addressing the identified areas for improvement and ensuring that adult learners and apprentices in North Yorkshire receive the best possible education to support their future careers and lives.


The council’s assistant director for education and skills, Amanda Newbold, added:

I’m delighted to see that Ofsted inspectors recognise that our strategy for improvement is paying off. When the initial visit was taken, we were at the start of a journey of transition.

The strategy and subsequent work we had already started to implement is well under way now. The commitment to continuous improvement is evident in the positive progress observed during the recent monitoring visit, which highlights too that the strategy is working.”

We will remain focused on our mission to provide high-quality education for adults, aligning with the evolving needs of our residents and communities.



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