Falkirk's clean HMI sweep

25th June 2004 at 01:00
Falkirk College is the first in the further education sector to make a clean sweep in the HMI judgement of its performance, with all eight activities under scrutiny being judged very good.

Linda McKay, the principal, wins accolades for her "open, responsive and decisive leadership", to which the staff responded well.

She parried the praise, attributing the college's successes to a whole-staff approach, adding that she was particularly pleased HMI had acknowledged the "strong team ethos". The inspectors said the senior management, heads of school, service unit managers and and senior lecturers all performed well in their jobs.

The eight elements rated as very good were educational leadership, access and inclusion, guidance and student support, arrangements for students with learning difficulties and disabilities, resources to support learners, staff, quality assurance and quality improvement.

Ms McKay said the increased funding the college had received made it possible "to provide a state-of-the-art learning environment which has undoubtedly raised the game and morale of everyone working in the college and has been appreciated by our students."

As is normal practice, HMI also carried out a detailed investigation into eight subject areas in the college and found that learning and teaching was effective in all of them, particularly in art and design.

Some 92 per cent of the lessons observed were either very good or good and the report comments: "Lecturers were enthusiastic and students well-motivated."

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