Carmel College – an Ofsted Outstanding Provider since 2002!

Carmel College was re-inspected by Ofsted at the end of April 2019 and we are very pleased to report that the college has retained its Outstanding status.

Carmel is an Outstanding Catholic Sixth Form College of around 2300 students, including 300 Higher Education students. Fifty percent of Carmel’s students come from Widening Participation postcodes, however the college is consistently ranked in the top 10 colleges nationally for the amount of progress students make.

In 2016, Carmel was ranked #1 in the country for A Level progress as judged by the A Level Performance System (ALPS) which measures student progress over 3 years.

Most recently, Carmel College has once again been graded Outstanding by Ofsted following their visit in April 2019. The college was graded outstanding when it was previously inspected in 2007. This makes Carmel the only Outstanding Sixth Form College nationally, that has retained its outstanding grade over the last ten years.

“Students strive to achieve the very high standards their teachers set. They make excellent progress, achieve their qualifications and progress to aspirational destinations.” Ofsted Report June 2019

Other highlights from the recent Ofsted report include:

Students are proud to study at the college. They value and respond positively to the very high expectations and aspirations teachers have of them. They take great pride in their work, which is of an exceptional standard.”

 “Students on A-level and level 3 and 4 vocational courses make exceptional progress. Students make excellent progress in GCSE English and mathematics.”

 Highly committed, skilled and enthusiastic teachers inspire and motivate students to achieve their very best. Students are inquisitive and eager to develop their knowledge and skills. Teachers create a respectful learning atmosphere in which students feel comfortable asking for points of clarification or attempting difficult questions. As a result, they develop a thorough understanding of the subject.”

The college attracts applications from over 90 High Schools across St Helens and neighbouring boroughs. We are very proud of our St Helens base and the thirty years of outstanding education we have given the borough.

Last year, over 75% of students who left Carmel went to work, train or continue their studies in employment areas identified as priorities by the Liverpool City Region LEP. In total, over 98% of our students made a positive progression from Carmel to university, further education, apprenticeships or employment.

We are working hard to support our local schools to ensure that as many young people as possible, from our area of the North West, are able to progress onto sustainable and positive careers. We provide our local schools with support from staff and students who act as mentors to help motivate and aspire high school students, especially in the areas of Maths, Creative & Digital and Life Sciences.

With support from the Chambers of Commerce and Liverpool Hope University, we have also this year launched the Carmel Service & Leaders Award. This builds on the community work and volunteering opportunities the college encourages all of our students to take advantage of. The Award is offered to all students as part of our 10:10 Extra-Curricular Programme and gives opportunities for service-based experiences, development of leadership potential and the equipping of students for a career in a rapidly changing world.

Alongside this, all our students have access to our Work Experience and Future Professionals Programmes. We are currently able to offer students work placements with over 400 local and regional employers. Each placement is bespoke to the individual student ensuring that the practical and academic elements blend well and support each other.

At Carmel, great emphasis is placed on providing excellent careers advice and guidance. Our Careers and Work Experience team is available to give help and advice whenever the college is open to students. In April 2017, we received re-accreditation of our Matrix Award after the Assessors were very impressed with what they experienced. This standard recognises the quality of advice, guidance and individual support we provide through our Personal Achievement Tutor and Careers Programmes. These are invaluable to our students, helping them to achieve both academically and personally by supporting their learning, choice of career and life goals.

We have worked effectively with our local universities to provide an exciting HE offer in St Helens which includes: a range of daytime and evening degree courses with Liverpool Hope University; and our long-established Year 0 Degree Programmes in partnership with The University of Liverpool including Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary Sciences. This allows access to degree programmes through a widening participation route, with entry based on a wider context, not just qualifications.

Carmel College Principal Mike Hill, commented “We are extremely happy with the Ofsted report and proud that we continue to be an Outstanding College. This is a fitting reward for the hard work of the whole staff at Carmel, both academic and support, who strive to uphold the college mission and ensure the best outcome for every individual student. The commitment and dedication of our fantastic students, who we are blessed to serve, also rightly received considerable praise from the Inspectors. We hope that Carmel’s success can also support and nurture the continued improvement in education across St Helens and help inspire younger students to perform at their very best.”

Read highlights from the Ofsted Inspection Report

Download full Ofsted Inspection Report