Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23
Forging Ahead
A Strategic Plan for Dudley
College of Technology 2020-23
Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23


Section 1                                                    Section 7
Foreword                                                 5   Our enabling support services                             51
Key achievements                                         6   7a. Careers, learner services,                             52
                                                                 marketing and public affairs
Section 2                                                    7b. Information technology &                               53
150 years + of professional and                          9       management information services
technical education in Dudley
                                                             Section 8
Section 3                                                    Our human resource strategy                               55
Our context                                             13
3a. A synoptic review of 2016-19                        13   Section 9
3b.	The fourth industrial revolution, the Industrial   14   Our financial strategy                                    59
    Strategy and the skills needs of our region -
    the role of colleges in a post Augar,                    Section 10
    post Brexit world                                        Our estates strategy                                      65
3c.	Collaboration, devolution and the                  15
    West Midlands Combined Authority
3d. Being ‘for’ a place - forging Dudley’s future       15   Section 11
                                                             Managing our risks                                        69
Section 4
Our mission and vision                                  17   Section 12
                                                             Our impact                                                73
Section 5
Learners at the heart of
everything we do                                        21
5a. Our approach to teaching and learning               21
5b. Supporting our learners and keeping them safe       24

Section 6
Making a strategic impact –                             26
our priority sectors
6a. Academic studies                                    28
6b. Adult programmes for learners returning             30
    to studies or preparing for employment
6c. Building technologies and services                  32
6d. Digital and creative industries                     35
6e. Engineering and advanced manufacturing              38
6f. Health and life science technologies                40
6g. Inclusion programmes                                44
6h. Professional services and service Industries        46
6i. Worldwide provision -                               48
    Dudley College Worldwide

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

              Section 1
              Key achievements

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

Dudley College of Technology has played a
pivotal role in the provision of vocational and
technical education in Dudley Borough and
the wider Black Country for over 150 years.

The college has been on a remarkable                and Marches Institute of Technology, due
journey over the last twelve years. In 2007         to open in 2021, and the opportunity to
the college was graded inadequate by                pilot all three new T Levels in 2020. These
Ofsted, with failing financial health, facilities   projects place the college at the vanguard
and resources unfit for purpose and an              of welcome changes in technical and higher
uncertain strategic future. Today the college       technical education.
is graded as an ‘outstanding’ provider and
is widely recognised as one of the highest          The college recognises its role in providing
performing general further education                system leadership for the further education
colleges in the country.                            sector. Particularly through the Further
                                                    Education Skills and Productivity Group, a
The journey from inadequate to                      collaboration of twenty-one colleges in the      Lowell Williams
outstanding has been planned carefully.             West Midlands working closely with the
We place a great emphasis on considered             West Midlands Combined Authority, the            Chief Executive Officer
strategic planning and turning strategy into        college’s strategy is to promote current
action. Delivering our strategic ambitions          and future collaboration between further
over recent years has not been easy, nor            education colleges. The college welcomed
without risk. This plan again sets out our          comments in the Augar Report in this
ambitions for the future. We recognise that         respect and approaches these discussions
the road ahead is a challenging one.                in an open and confident manner. The
                                                    recent three-way college collaboration
Over the life of our previous strategic             between Dudley, Halesowen and
plan, we delivered an investment in our             Birmingham Metropolitan colleges,
estate of some £60m, predominantly                  is evidence that collaboration can result
from the college’s own funds and through            in rationalised and secure provision in an
prudential borrowing. This has provided             area, providing a positive future for learners
us with excellent technical facilities but          and staff alike.                                 David Whatton
has required careful management of
                                                                                                     Chair of Corporation
our finances. This plan sets out further            But more than anything else the college
ambitious estate development whilst                 remains resolutely focused on providing
recognising the need to maximise returns            all learners with an exceptional experience
from prior investments, to rebuild cash             which provides for their successful
reserves and securely maintain good                 future careers.
financial health into the future.
                                                    This strategic plan, for the period 2020-
The college’s exceptional performance               2023, sets out the actions we will take to
in technical areas has resulted in exciting         realise our ambitious vision for the future
opportunities for the future, perhaps most          of Dudley College of Technology.
clearly demonstrated by our successful
application to develop the Black Country

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    Key achievements
    from the period of the last strategic plan

                                                         million Investment in
            Recognised by Ofsted                                                                    Maintained satisfactory financial
         as an "Outstanding Provider"                     Dudley Learning Quarter and             health and liquidity during a period of
                in March 2017.                               Brierley Hill Centres.                  significant capital investment.

     46,000 Over the last four years
                                                                                                      As one of the country's largest
             46,000 learners have
                                                                                                       Apprenticeship providers we
            successfully achieved                               95% of full-time
                                                                                                    supported over 7,000 apprentices.
              their qualifications.                          learners' progress to
                                                             positive destinations.

                                                                                                       Selected by DfE following a
                                                                                                     national competition, to lead the
                                                                                                    development of a prestigious new
                                                         Achievement rates consistently                   Institute of Technology.
      Dudley College Worldwide delivers                     above national average.
        to 1,200 learners worldwide.

                                                          High levels of satisfaction throughout the life of this strategic plan:

                                                     FE Choices Employer Survey – rating of 9.6 for ‘likelihood to recommend’

                                                         FE Choices Learner Survey - rating of 8.1 (16-18), 8.6 (Adult) and 8.5
                                                              (Apprenticeships) for ‘satisfaction with teaching/training’.

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

    National Entrepreneur of the
    Year winner 2017 & 2018 and
                                                                                               Achieve prestigious
      Inspirational Learner and            Dudley Academies Trust is formed                  STEM Assured kite mark.
     Enterprise Manager award             under the sponsorship of the college.
           winner in 2018.

Accredited by the Office for Students                                                    Lowell Williams Chief Executive
                                                   College becomes
 as a provider of higher education –                                                          Officer is recognised
                                              Chartered Institute of Further
met all 24 standards for our provision.                                                    as FE Leader of the Year at
                                                  Education member.
                                                                                               TES Awards 2018.

                                                Received British Council                   The college wins managing
                                                  Re-Accreditation for                   agent status for Waltham Forest
    Dudley College of Technology                   English Teaching.                     Borough Council's Construction
     becomes T Level provider.                                                                   Training Centre.

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

              Section 2
              150 years+ of professional and
              technical education in Dudley

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

150 years+
of professional and technical education in Dudley

                                               Five acre site at The Broadway offered by
                                               Dudley Town Council.

1862                                                                                             Official opening of The Broadway site.
Dudley College of Technology traces its
origins to the building of the Dudley Public
Hall and Mechanics Institute in 1862.

                                                                                                 Outbreak of World War Two – decision

1896                                                                                             to postpone completion of further
                                                                                                 building work.

Additional accommodation in Stafford Street
was acquired and became the Dudley
Technical School (renamed the Dudley
Technical College in 1928).

                                               Building works begin following acceptance
                                               of a tender of £74,177.

                                               First learners admitted in September.

1918                                                                                             Completion of building work to include
                                                                                                 electrical engineering, metallurgy, meteorology.
Agreement reached between Dudley and
Staffordshire Education Committees to
erect a college to provide Technical
Education facilities.

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Forging Ahead A Strategic Plan for Dudley College of Technology 2020-23

     1966                                                                                          2013
     Termination of joint administration with                                                      Completion of Aspire Living – Centre for

     Staffordshire Council – college became sole                                                   Independent Living.
     responsibility of Dudley Council and
     renamed Dudley Technical College.
                                                    Opening of Centre for Learning at

                                                    Rover, Longbridge.

     1968                                                                                          Completion of Aspire Works – Centre for
     Completion of The Broadway F block to
     accommodate Motor Vehicle, Electrical and
                                                    2001                                           Independent Work Skills officially opened by
                                                                                                   Ian Austin, Member of Parliament for Dudley
     Hydraulic laboratories.                                                                       North 13th March 2015.
                                                    Merger with Rowley Regis College.
                                                                                                   Completion of Dudley Advance - Centre for
                                                                                                   Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering
                                                                                                   officially opened by Professor Brian Cox
     1973                                           2002
                                                                                                   on 24th April 2015 and Dudley Enhance,
                                                                                                   (extension to Dudley Sixth incorporating
                                                                                                   the STIR Bistro).
     Glass Centre opened at Brierley Hill by
                                                    Acquisition of Castle View campus from
     HRH Duchess of Kent.
                                                    University of Wolverhampton.

     1982                                           2011
     Construction of Wolverhampton
                                                    Opening of Energy Training Hub in Tipton.
     Street site.

     Mons Hill campus opened.

     Official opening of G & H block at
     The Broadway by HRH Duke of Kent.

                                                    Completion of Dudley Evolve and Dudley
                                                    Sixth, to form phase 1 and 2 of the Dudley
                                                    Learning Quarter, officially opened by the
                                                    Rt Hon Dr Vince Cable MP, Secretary of
                                                    State for Business, Innovation and Skills on
                                                    21st November 2012. Closure and disposal
                                                    of Castle View site and relocation of Glass
                                                    Centre to Dudley Evolve.

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                                            Dudley Advance II a Centre for Advanced

                                                                                                   2019 August
                                            Building Technologies opens its doors.

                                                                                                   Art & Design Centre (Brierley Hill)
                                                                                                   Independent Living Centre
                                                                                                   (Brierley Hill)
                                                                                                   Black Country Skills Shop become part
                                                                                                   of Dudley College of Technology.

                                            Dudley achieves Ofsted
                                            "Outstanding Provider" status.

2015                                                                                               2021 September
Dudley Advance, the Centre for Advanced
                                                                                                   Planned commissioning of Black Country
Manufacturing and Engineering Technology
                                                                                                   and Marches Institute of Technology.
opened by Professor Brian Cox
(September 2014 takes in first learners).

                                            Construction Apprenticeship Training Centre
                                            (CAT) takes in first learners.

2016                                        2019 May
                                            The college wins managing agent status
Priory Road Football Complex kicks off
                                            for Waltham Forest Borough Council
thanks to a grant from the Premier League
                                            Construction Training Centre.
& The FA Facilities Fund.

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               Section 3
               Our context
               3a. A synoptic review of 2016-19
               3b. The fourth industrial revolution, the Industrial Strategy
                   and the skills needs of our region - the role of
                   colleges in a post Augar, post Brexit world
               3c. Collaboration, devolution and the West Midlands
                   Combined Authority
               3d. Being ‘for’ a place - Forging Dudley’s future

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Our context
During the period since the publication of our
last strategic plan, the college’s reputation
and position in the market place has
continued to grow.

3a. A synoptic review
of 2016-19
Key landmarks in the evolution of our              Automotive, alongside the small medium
history, which now places us in a leading          sized enterprises that are the core of our
position in the educational economy have           regional economy.
included the achievement of our Ofsted
“Outstanding Provider” rating in May               Critically in our last plan we committed
2017, the expansion of our estate with the         to being the “prime mover in unlocking
opening of Dudley Advance II our centre            the talent of the young people”, in the
for advanced building technologies in              communities closest to us. Through the
September 2017, followed by the smaller            creation of Dudley Academies Trust we
scale investment in the Construction               have given shape to this commitment,
Apprenticeship Training Centre in January 2018.    embracing the strategic leadership as
More recently our assumption of the role           sponsors for four Dudley Metropolitan
of managing agent for the Advance Technical        Borough Council based secondary schools.
Engineering Construction Centre our Waltham        With a history of under achievement we
Forest Council-led construction training           have begun to transform the outcomes for
centre in Leyton, East London, has seen us         learners in these schools, notwithstanding
transfer our sector specific knowledge and         they have a long journey to make on the
experience gained in the West Midlands,            road to excellence.
to the capital.
                                                   Finally, towards the end of 2019, the college
But our evolving status as sector leading          was invited by the Further Education
has not simply been predicated on the              Commissioner to work with Halesowen
level of investment in our estate but on           College to protect learning for hundreds
a range of factors linked to our central           of individuals as Birmingham Metropolitan
concern to deliver a truly technical               College looked to de-merge its operations
curriculum that prepares learners for              in the Black Country. In the devolution of
the contemporary jobs market. Our                  its provision in Stourbridge and Brierley
growing status as the leading provider of          Hill, Dudley College of Technology was
Apprenticeships within the West Midlands           able to protect jobs for over 100 staff and
economy, both in terms of volume and               several hundreds more learners acquiring
quality of provision, with achievement             the Art & Design Centre and Independent
rates well above national averages for the         Living Centre in Brierley Hill and the
full-life cycle of the last strategic plan, mean   Black Country Skills Shop in Merry Hill.
that we have delivered on our strategic            The rationalisation of further education
ambition to place employers at the heart           provision in the Dudley Borough, reflects
of the college’s work. By responding to            how as an institution we are able to
national government reforms such as the            respond to changing circumstances for
introduction of the Apprenticeship levy,           the good of learning and learners and
we have grown our customer base to                 our growing role in system leadership in
serve large national and multi-national            further education.
employers such as Tesco and Kuka

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     3b. The fourth industrial
     revolution, the Industrial Strategy
     and the skills needs of our region
     - the role of colleges in a post
     Augar, post Brexit world
     During the years 2016-19 the skills            However, as Britain stands on the eve of
     economy has changed immensely as               Brexit and its departure from the European
     the macro-climate in which the college         Union, the ability to deliver a skills agenda
     operates has evolved, which has been           that sustains the UK economy, by training
     further shaped by the publication of the       a workforce with the right kind of high
     UK Government’s Industrial Strategy.           demand skills, has never been more acute.
     Aimed at realising the potential of
     technology in education in order to boost      Coupled with the recommendations of the
     the productivity and earning power of          Review of Post 18 Education and Funding
     people thought the UK, the strategy has        (commonly known as the Augar Review)
     defined the grand challenges facing the        it is to be hoped that the centrality of the
     nation. The role of further education in       further education system to meeting the
     meeting those challenges has increasingly      nation’s skills challenges is at last being
     been acknowledged by government as             acknowledged and will be resourced.
     critical. With the announcement of a £400      Although this is by no means certain as
     million investment in further education        Augar itself acknowledges that: “No prior
     and sixth form colleges (31st August 2019),    government of any persuasion has considered
     the Chancellor Sajid Javid demonstrated        further education to be a priority.”
     commitment to the sector and recognised
     it as pivotal to delivering on the ambitions
     of the Industrial Strategy.

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3c. Collaboration, devolution
and the West Midlands
Combined Authority

                                                 the college is well-placed to progress this
                                                 agenda, during the lifetime of this plan.

                                                 The work of the Further Education
                                                 Skills and Productivity Group, which is
                                                 unique to the West Midlands in bringing
                                                 together 21 further education colleges in
                                                 a strategic partnership, is well positioned
                                                 to take forward a place based strategy for
                                                 the region. As a founder member of the
                                                 Further Education Skills and Productivity
                                                 Group the college has invested in helping
                                                 to take forward joined-up activity that
                                                 avoids duplication and ensures each college

If, further education is to sail on the
                                                 works to its strengths. This is an agenda we
                                                 remain resolutely committed to. Through         3d. Being ‘for’ a
                                                                                                 place - forging
current of positive intent, colleges             this work to-date, the Further Education
themselves will have to develop more             Skills and Productivity Group has set the
collaborative behaviours, underpinned by         foundations for a systematic approach that
a strong directive that links investment
and funding decisions to a strategically
                                                 equally balances the interests of a place
                                                 and the needs of individual institutions. In
                                                                                                 Dudley’s future
planned network of providers with a clear        the West Midlands the Further Education
understanding of the core and specialist         Skills and Productivity Group has had a
offer. Better system planning of strategic       considerable influence and could have           In the next phase of the college’s strategic
investment in specialisms would create a         an ever more pivotal role to play going         development we recognise, as succinctly
place based strategy that doesn’t eradicate      forward in designing and delivering a           expressed by Professor Martin Doel, that
the free market but allows for competition       pluralistic education economy that plays        we should not only be ‘of a place’ but more
where it adds values at the same time            to individual provider strengths.               importantly ‘for a place’. The college in
eliminating wasteful competition and                                                             the future needs to be more than simply
unhelpful duplication.                                                                           responsive to local need. We need to help
                                                                                                 define and shape that need. Over the
During the lifetime of the last strategic                                                        last three years the skills and education
plan the creation of combined authorities                                                        provision in a locality have become a
at a city-region level and the devolution                                                        place defining feature. And whilst to some
of budgets from Whitehall has changed                                                            extent that has always been true, when we
the landscape in which further education                                                         consider the glass making trades of Dudley
institutions operate. The West Midlands                                                          in the 1700’s or the nuclear industry
Combined Authority now has “purchasing                                                           centred around Sizewell B in Suffolk in
power” for a range of training and skills                                                        the 1990's, the need to align place and
interventions. This places them at the                                                           practice, training and terrain has never
hub of a regional system where they can                                                          been stronger.
influence future decisions about the nature
of the region’s further education provision.                                                     In being for a place in the next cycle of
Devolution in the region, if developed                                                           our development, the college will not only
in partnership with the region’s further                                                         mirror the culture and values reflected in
education colleges, could help to secure a                                                       its local traditions and histories but will
self-sustaining infrastructure of providers,                                                     also help mould new ones for the future.
working to a plan that creates synergy                                                           By actively engaging in the borough-wide
between learner demand, employer need                                                            Dudley vision for 2030 and supporting
and a strategic and well planned skills offer.                                                   the Forging a Future initiative, the college
                                                                                                 will play an active part in the civic destiny
The implementation of new T Level                                                                of Dudley Borough, its residents and its
qualifications in the region, with a                                                             business - standing not only for that place
requirement for extended work placement,                                                         but helping to make it fit for the future - a
presents further opportunity to align                                                            thriving community where people want to
curriculum more closely to workforce                                                             live, work and study with a vibrant college
demand. As a pilot provider of T Levels                                                          at its heart.

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               Section 4
               Our mission and vision

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Our mission
and vision
The college's mission statement is as follows:

Our mission: outstanding technical and
professional learning, which raises aspirations,
develops skills and changes lives.

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        Our vision
        By 2023 we will be firmly recognised regionally,
        nationally and internationally simply as ‘a great college’.
        With our focus on apprentices, full-time programmes
        for young people, adult learning and higher technical
        skills, we will consistently make a real difference to
        the lives of our learners, raising their aspirations
        and promoting their prosperity. As a driving force in
        the regional economy we will continue to improve
        business productivity, adding gross value.

     As one of the largest and most successful      in mathematics and English, English
     providers of Apprenticeships in the UK,        language speaking and functional skills
     Apprenticeships will justifiably be regarded   qualifications. A growing number of these
     as the ‘jewel in our crown’. Supported         adults, particularly those on lower level
     by our inspirational, newly opened Black       programmes, will progress quickly into
     Country and Marches Institute of Technology,   Apprenticeships or other employment.
     our Apprenticeship numbers will continue
                                                    And our higher skills provision will be
     to grow, most significantly at advanced
                                                    transformed from today’s offer, with a
     and higher levels. An increasing percentage
     of our apprentices will follow careers in      dramatic expansion of new programmes,
     priority sectors. Many young women             closely aligned to local economic needs.
     will join these pathways and more              More learners will join higher level
     of our apprentices will be from ethnic         programmes in STEM (science, technology,
     minority communities.                          engineering and mathematics) related
                                                    subjects, particularly bespoke new higher
     Our full-time young learners will continue     skills programmes developed in close
     to achieve high success rates in all           partnership with local industries and
     curriculum areas, well above national          our university partners. Our higher skills
     rates. Those with low prior attainment         provision will enhance the technical
     in mathematics and English will make           capacity of the region’s workforce, driving
     significant progress with these key skills.    forward innovation and productivity.
     Our relentless focus on aspiration will
     ensure more young people achieve               Across all of our provision our learners
     high grades. From the many and varied          will understand how to best conduct
     opportunities provided to them, especially     themselves, professionally and socially, and
     through our new T Level programmes, they       to keep themselves safe. They will enjoy
     will be well prepared for work and highly      their training, benefiting from teaching
     employable, progressing into enriching         which is active, exciting and inspiring,
     careers. Dudley Sixth will be recognised       which focuses on their individual needs
     as the A level centre of choice for            and which makes best use of learning
     young people in Dudley Borough and             technologies. Our learners will prosper
     adjacent areas.                                in their careers, improving workplace
                                                    productivity, contributing positively to the
     Our close and effective working with the       regional economy and helping to narrow
     West Midlands Combined Authority will          the skills gap.
     ensure our adult education provision is
     highly effective. An extensive network of      Our stakeholders will be delighted with
     college and community based essential          our innovative curriculum, our focus on
     skills programmes will support at risk         technical, professional and higher skills
     adults on the margins of society. An           and our inspirational facilities. For young
     increasing number of adults will engage        people, adults, employers and wider
     in this provision, improving their essential   partners Dudley College of Technology
     and employability skills, gaining GCSEs        will be the ‘college of choice’.

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               Section 5
               Learners at the heart of
               everything we do
               5a. Our approach to teaching and learning
               5b. Supporting our learners and keeping them safe

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Learners at the heart
of everything we do
5a. Our approach to
teaching and learning

Context                                         Where we are now?                                  The welcome addition of staff from
                                                                                                   Birmingham Metropolitan College into
In the same way that machines changed           The overall standard of teaching, learning         the college has resulted in a programme
the lives of our ancestors in the 19th          and assessing at Dudley College of                 of integration to ensure that the college’s
century, so technology is transforming the      Technology is consistently high, with the          teaching and learning practice is improved
approach to teaching and learning, and          large majority of lessons either meeting, or       through the two-way sharing of best
learner expectations, in the 21st century.      exceeding the college’s high expectations.         practice. This has been established through
Technology, coupled with highly valuable        Ofsted’s ‘outstanding’ judgement for the           a strong induction programme which
and ever-increasing industry links, are         quality of teaching, learning and assessment       outlined the college’s high teaching and
changing the landscape of teaching and          was a positive yard-stick in the college’s         learning expectations and provided strong
learning at Dudley College of Technology.       on-going journey to provide the best               support and guidance to college systems
                                                possible experience for its diverse                and support, which embedded former
Recent changes to the Ofsted framework,         learner group.                                     Birmingham Metropolitan College staff
in addition to upcoming curriculum                                                                 into the teaching and learning culture
reforms with the introduction of T Levels       The college’s evolving approach to teaching,       of the college. Welcome walks, bespoke
from 2020, have provided a sharp focus          learning and assessment has resulted in a          ‘Upskill’ sessions, dedicated outstanding
on the need for a more industry-based           culture of pedagogical experimentation,            practitioner support and teaching triangles
curriculum with high-quality digital content    whilst raising teaching standards and              will provide a clear blue-print to teaching
across all learning platforms. The digital      developing highly reflective and confident         ‘The Dudley Way’.
capabilities of teaching staff will             staff; through a collaborative communities
become major learner and employer               of practice ‘teaching triangles’ model. ‘These
satisfaction indicators.                        approaches are contributing to a further, very
                                                positive improvement in the college’s culture
Aligning with the government’s industrial       which encourages teachers to be professionally
and digital strategies will be a key teaching   reflective, confident, enthusiastic and willing
and learning focus across all provision. All    to take risks to bring the best out of their
stakeholders will expect that teaching and      learners’ (Ofsted, 2017).
learning at Dudley College of Technology,
including technology and resources, are         Where possible learners will participate in
equal to, or exceed, industry standard.         the design of their curriculum, co-designing
                                                models of delivery to suit their bespoke
National teaching and learning trends           learning styles and modes of study.
continue to see the increased development
of highly creative and innovative e-learning,   Learners are exposed to a wide variety of
including staff and learners who are            teaching, learning and assessment strategies
increasingly immersed within a flexible,        which engage them and help them progress
blended approach to learning.                   towards their next steps. Close links with
                                                employers greatly assist this process as
                                                curriculum and skills are shaped through
                                                industry involvement. ‘Highly qualified
                                                staff use their excellent subject knowledge
                                                and vocational skills, and extensive links with
                                                employers to provide lessons that relate closely
                                                to the needs and expectations of industry.This
                                                motivates and inspires learners exceptionally
                                                well’ (Ofsted, 2017).

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     What we will do                                For young people there will be a sharp         Technology will play a major role by
                                                    focus on the best teaching strategies          ensuring all learners can access provision
     In the next phase of our development           for special education needs learners,          remotely, meaning that learners can
     we propose to grow and develop our             in particular, those within a vocational       work at their own pace and level wherever
     practice in the following ways.                setting. Teaching focus and development        and whenever they choose. Formative
                                                    groups will be established to provide          assessment will be mainly carried out via
     For young people we will ensure teaching,                                                     on-line quizzes with instant constructive
                                                    clear direction for all staff, with a strong
     learning and assessment at Dudley College                                                     feedback, virtual observations or
                                                    emphasis on providing guidance and
     of Technology harnesses the global power                                                      e-portfolio evidence.
                                                    training for those learners who have
     of technology to shape learners for
                                                    an educational health care plan.
     higher studies and the world of work.                                                         The teaching learning and development
                                                    Teaching triangles will continue               focus group will also investigate national
     Working side-by-side with employers,                                                          adult teaching trends and assist in
                                                    to evolve through the guidance of a
     and through an immersive technology                                                           shaping the adult triangle process to ensure
                                                    staff forum. Triangles will be heavily
     focused teaching and learning environment,                                                    it meets the current and future needs of all
                                                    supplemented through a highly
     the college will equip learners with                                                          adult learners.
                                                    collaborative culture where staff
     the industry specific digital skills,
                                                    drive continual pedagogical improvement
     knowledge and behaviours for an                                                               At higher level we will ensure
                                                    through regular informal lesson visits
     ever-changing digital world.                                                                  technology is widely used so that the
                                                    where best practice will be shared and
                                                                                                   learner access experience matches that of
     All stakeholders will benefit from the         ingrained within the teaching and learning
                                                                                                   higher education institutes. Learners will
     college’s two-way working relationship         fabric of the college.
                                                                                                   have the opportunity to access lessons
     with industry. Through industry                                                               remotely (virtual lessons, webinars)
                                                    To ensure young people are the
     secondment and professional                                                                   through a more blended approach to
                                                    beneficiaries of the most up-to-date
     updating our learners will be exposed                                                         teaching and learning.
     to technically skilled staff with the latest   teaching and learning methodologies
     industrial updating, particularly in the       we will establish links with other             National approaches to higher teaching
     preparation and delivery of T Levels.          ‘outstanding’ further education                and learning will be discussed and actioned
                                                    providers, or providers with outstanding       through the teaching and learning
     The college will continue to explore           aspects to their provision, to arrange         development focus group, ensuring
     models of using industry experts               reciprocal quality audit visits of teaching,   that Dudley College of Technology higher
     to undertake specialist delivery               learning and assessment. These visits will     education learners are exposed to the
     across all of our priority provision. We       also ensure that the college is compliant      latest teaching methodologies.
     will encourage this through a reciprocal       with the new Ofsted 2019 framework and
     understanding of each other’s skills and       that we maintain a fresh and innovative        Higher education specific teaching
     resource needs.                                approach through cross-institutional           triangles will be established in all
                                                    sharing of best practice.                      curriculum areas with higher education
     Technology will not only personalise                                                          provision thereby sharing best practice
     learning, but feedback and                     For adults we will continue to ensure          and making the clear distinction
     assessment too, so that individuals can        that their teaching and learning               between higher education and further
     progress at their own pace and study           experiences at Dudley College of               education teaching.
     where and when they choose, regardless of      Technology replicate their desired
     age, background or personal circumstance.      programme and industry expectations.

     For more information log on to

With Apprenticeships we will, once again,       Succession planning will enable staff
ensure that their learning environment has      to deliver higher level programmes as the
the teaching and learning technology equal      college continues to increase its learner
to, or exceeding, industry standard.            numbers and provide state of the art
                                                facilities, such as the Black Country and
All apprentices will have access to on-line     Marches Institute of Technology.
formative and summative assessment,
including instant constructive feedback         We will continue to work proactively to
and virtual observations, while summative       ensure we fully meet our statutory
and end-point assessments will                  responsibility in relation to safeguarding.
incorporate the use of technology.              At the heart of this are effective
                                                arrangements to ensure staff can quickly
All apprentices and their employers will        identify learners and groups who are at risk
benefit greatly from staff’s highly effective   and guarantee they are safeguarded.
use of SmartAssessor in the electronic
collection of learner’s skills and knowledge.   On-going professional development
                                                for all of our teaching staff will remain
An Apprenticeship teaching and                  a priority for the college throughout the
learning working group will be                  life of this strategic plan.
established to look at national, regional
and local teaching trends and assist with
their application at Dudley College of
Technology. This working group will also
look at the possibility of establishing
a cross-institutional working party to
evaluate and address Apprenticeship
delivery, with a close focus on Ofsted’s
new inspection framework.

                                                                                         For more information log on to

     5b. Supporting our learners
     and keeping them safe

     The college prides itself in an inclusive
     and harmonious culture which enables
     all learners to thrive. We are committed
     to ensuring our learners leave us with
     not only the technical and academic skills
     required to progress in their learning
     and careers but also the wider skills
     they will need to become responsible
     and safe adults.

     We are, however, acutely aware of the
     challenges youth culture affords our
     learners in a region which saw 690 children
     under 17 years threatened or attacked
     with a knife, and more than 800 youngsters
     in possession of a knife in 2018 (source The
     Guardian 11th March 2019 - West Midlands
     Police FOI).

     We understand the increasing risk sexual
                                                    Where we are now?
     and criminal exploitation pose to our          The college prides itself in offering an
     learners and understand the critical role      extensive suite of additional support to
     the college plays in keeping learners safe.    all learners including apprentices. Support
                                                    ranges from specialist dyslexia and
     We are mindful, that in line with The          mental health support to finance,
     Mental Health Foundation’s estimation: I       advice and guidance.
     in 10 of our young learners and 1 in 6 of
     our adult learners are likely to be affected   Well-developed systems enable learners
     by mental health problems whilst they are      to identify a support need at application,
     studying with us.                              enrolment or on a programme. Learners
                                                    who benefit from support have high
     Sitting in a diverse community where           achievement rates comparable to
     political groups have initiated divisive       their peers.
     activities, the college recognises its
     responsibility to promote equality,            As the number of learners with additional
     celebrate diversity and challenge those        and complex needs increase, the college
     who oppose British values: individual          has invested in new roles including an
     liberty, respect and tolerance, freedom        Inclusion Manager and Education Health
     of speech and the rule of law.                 Care Plans Officer whilst continuing to
                                                    grow our team of educational support
                                                    assistants through new recruitment and
                                                    integration of the learner support team
                                                    from Birmingham Metropolitan College.
                                                    Following the transfer of staff from
                                                    Birmingham Metropolitan College, we have
                                                    gained additional counselling resources to
                                                    ensure we are able to offer confidential
                                                    counselling to learners across all of
                                                    our sites.

                                                    The college takes its role seriously in
                                                    keeping learners safe. We continue to have
                                                    strong links with the Dudley Safeguarding
                                                    People Partnership Board and have
                                                    recently supported three additional staff
                                                    to complete designated safeguarding lead
                                                    training to add to our capacity to support
                                                    vulnerable learners.

     For more information log on to

What we will do                               awareness of keeping themselves safe              assistants will be a key focus. Each
                                              and wider personal skills to prepare              educational support assistant will
We will run regular staff training and        them for adult life and work.                     develop expertise in a specific learning
briefing sessions to ensure all staff are                                                       difficulty or disability enabling them to
aware of the local and regional pattern of    Through blended learning, we will use             advise and support others.
risks related to young people and adults.     eLearning to further support learners
                                              in keeping themselves safe, building              Peer mentoring will be a key focus
Through the Further Educations Skills and     resilience and understanding their                to support learners at risk of dropping
Productivity Group’s Safer Student Group,     mental health.                                    off programme or failing. These learner
we will work collaboratively across the                                                         mentors will provide a range of
West Midlands to raise awareness              Supporting learners’ mental health will           support including study and
in the region of the serious                  continue to be a key focus of the college.        revision support sessions.
dangers affiliated to issues such             We will continue to promote mental
as gang violence, knife crime and             health awareness and embed our mental             We will complete a feasibility study
sexual exploitation.                          health first aiders and mental health             around the development of a stretch and
                                              ambassadors into college life.                    challenge hub to support learners to
We will work with the Safer Students                                                            achieve their highest grade.
Group to co-ordinate existing                 We will continually update our digital
approaches to educating young                 systems including firewall, web filtering         We will invest in a digital assessment
people about their personal safety.           and incident logging to ensure they               tool: Cognassist, to enable us to
                                              are suitable for an increasingly                  identify learners with non-easily identified
We will continue to embed safeguarding        digital world.                                    additional needs to receive much
and British Values into our code of conduct                                                     needed support.
and expectations of learners. A culture of    Learners will benefit from a high quality
mutual respect and tolerance will be          confidential counselling, welfare and             Our commitment to our proactive
evident across all college sites.             finance support enabling them to manage           and dynamic Student Union will be
                                              the demands of modern life whilst still           maintained and we will work to engage
We will, through staff development, ensure    achieving and progressing.                        them in a number of cross college
that all staff are confident in promoting                                                       initiatives including mental health
equality and diversity and challenging        We will maintain our Matrix                       support, behaviour, resilience and
those who oppose this.                        accreditation for impartial advice                personal development.
                                              and guidance ensuring learners receive
We will work closely with a range of          appropriate and effective support to              We will engage with external
local stakeholders including businesses,      progress on to positive destinations.             experts including drug and alcohol
Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council,                                                            rehabilitation, healthy relationships
Dudley Safeguarding People Partnership        For our apprentices the role of our               and sexual health experts to support
Board and social services to ensure our       personal development officers will                our learners with specific issues whilst
young people are safe and Dudley is a         continue to grow through a structured staff       they study with us.
safe place to study.                          development programme. This will ensure
                                              the complex needs of apprentices are              In the rare occasions the college is
We will increase our reach into our local     identified effectively and needs are              forced to exclude learners we will
communities through English language          met, enabling them to achieve. We                 increase our systems to monitor and
provision, employability and the work with    resolutely stand by our strategy of               support the transition of these
local schools promoting positive and          extending additional learning                     excluded learners to positive
harmonious relations.                         support to apprentices.                           destinations and other support services.

Through our performance improvement           Investing in the development of our
programme, we will develop learners’          cross college team of education support

                                                                                          For more information log on to

               Section 6
               Making a strategic impact –
               our priority sectors
               6a. Academic studies
               6b. Adult programmes for learners returning to studies
                   or preparing for employment
               6c. Building technologies and services
               6d. Digital and creative industries
               6e. Engineering and advanced manufacturing
               6f. Health and life science technologies
               6g. Inclusion programmes
               6h. Professional services and service Industries
               6i. Worldwide provision - Dudley College Worldwide

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    Making a
    strategic impact –
    our priority sectors

    In developing our provision, we recognise
    the need to balance our ‘general further
    education provision’ to meet the needs of
    our local community with the development of
    more specialised technical programmes of
    regional or national significance.

                                               During the life of the last strategic plan         In this plan we explain the ‘context’ of the
    In developing and delivering our           we routinely reported our impact in this           college’s current provision for each key
    provision we are clear on the following:   respect in our Annual Strategic Impact             of our priority sectors and the college’s
                                               Assessment Report.                                 progress to date in meeting the needs of
    Our intent – to develop highly
                                                                                                  each sector, ‘where are we now?’ The plan
    effective programmes in priority           In this plan we identify the following as          details the bespoke strategic actions we
    sectors allowing learners to progress      our priority sectors:                              will implement in each priority sector over
    to productive careers or to progress
                                                                                                  the life of this plan ‘what we will do.’
    in their current career and in doing so    • Academic studies
                                                                                                  On an annual basis the Corporation
    to make a major contribution to the        • Adult programmes for learners returning         will agree and monitor a more detailed
    productivity of the region;                   to studies or preparing for employment          operational development plan, with very
    Our implementation strategy – to           • Building technologies and services               specific, time bound actions for each of
    ensure learners are supported with the     • Digital and creative industries                  our priority sectors.
    highest quality teaching and learning      • Engineering and advanced manufacturing           In this plan we also detail the impact
    and industrial placement experience,
                                               • Health and life science technologies             we seek to have achieved by 2023. The
    in industry standard facilities and
                                               • Inclusion programmes                             impact targets for 2023 are a simplification
    resources using the latest technologies;
                                                                                                  of a range of detailed impact measures
                                               • Professional services and
    Our impact – to change the life                                                               set annually. At a high level they are
                                                  service industries
    chances of all learners, to see them                                                          the indicators we use to assess the
                                               • Worldwide provision.                             achievement, or otherwise, of our vision.
    progress into high value careers
    and to contribute to innovation and
    productivity in the regional economy.

                                                                                            For more information log on to

     6a. Academic studies
                                                                                                    Where we are now?
                                                                                                    Over the life of the last strategic plan,
                                                                                                    Dudley College of Technology has
                                                                                                    supported some 1,593 learners to
                                                                                                    successfully retake their GCSE English
                                                                                                    or mathematics qualification having been
                                                                                                    unsuccessful at school, with thousands
                                                                                                    more successfully achieving appropriate
                                                                                                    functional skills as an alternative. Through
                                                                                                    a whole college approach to delivery our
                                                                                                    GCSE English retake results stand at 60%
                                                                                                    and mathematics 45%, considerably above
                                                                                                    national rates for retake programmes
                                                                                                    which are 32% and 22% respectively.
                                                                                                    Continuing to support learners to gain
                                                                                                    these important qualifications remains
                                                                                                    a priority.

                                                                                                    Since opening in 2012, the college’s
                                                                                                    dedicated A level centre, Dudley Sixth has
     Context                                        On top of this the demand for individuals
                                                                                                    attracted increasing numbers of learners in
                                                    with higher level skills is growing; within
     Academic performance in Dudley and                                                             the region to undertake academic studies
                                                    the West Midlands region, 21.8% of
     the wider Black Country falls below the                                                        and now supports over 500 learners per
                                                    economically active people (16-64 year
     national comparator (61.3% of people                                                           year. With a pass rate of 99.1%, above the
                                                    olds) qualified to level 4 and above,
     in Dudley are qualified to level 2, versus                                                     national rate of 97.6%, we are pleased to
                                                    compared to 26.1% nationally - a difference
     70.4% in the West Midlands and 74.9%                                                           support many learners in their next steps
                                                    of 4.3%. In 2017, 29.6% were qualified to
     in the UK). This presents a challenge in                                                       to higher education. A particular focus
                                                    level 4+ compared to 38.6% nationally - a
     supporting young people to progress in                                                         in recent years has been on driving high
                                                    difference of 9%. Analysis suggests that
     their education beyond school. Some                                                            grades for our learners. In the most recent
                                                    Birmingham alone, currently needs an
     63.3% of school leavers in Dudley will leave                                                   exam results (August 2019) there was a
                                                    additional 68,300 residents with NVQ level
     without a grade 5 in GCSE mathematics or                                                       7% increase in the number of learners
                                                    4+ qualifications and 5,988 more residents
     English. This is seen at Dudley College of                                                     achieving A*-C in their subjects which now
                                                    with NVQ level 3 + qualifications to fill the
     Technology, where our most recent intake                                                       stands at 75% of exams taken. Currently
                                                    current skills gaps. Supporting more people
     reported some 1,519 learners without                                                           77% of our A level learners move on
                                                    to study at a higher level and remain local
     these important qualifications at grade 4 or                                                   to University to continue their studies,
                                                    remains a regional priority.
     above. The expectation is on local colleges                                                    although we are seeing an increasing
     to support learners to successfully retake     Since the last strategic plan the college has   percentage choosing to go directly into
     these qualifications alongside their further   had a focus on increasing opportunities         employment and potentially continue their
     education programme.                           for local people to continue to higher level    studies though higher Apprenticeships.
                                                    studies locally and in a cost effective way.
     For young people leaving school A              The number of learners on our HNC and
     level studies are still a popular route        HND higher level programmes has grown
     through to higher education, with most         due to the expansion of curriculum in
     learners choosing to study 3 or 4 A level      new facilities such as Advance I and II. Our
     subjects. Recent reforms of the A level        achievement rates for these programmes
     curriculum mean that the content for these     have remained high, currently standing
     programmes is more demanding than ever.        at 91% for 2018/19. The biggest area of
     It has also led to a change in assessment      growth however appears to be higher
     methodology, whereby the entire 2-year         Apprenticeships, with more employers
     curriculum is assessed in one set of final     making use of Apprenticeship funding or
     exams at the end.                              levy to support employees to continue on
                                                    to higher level study.

     For more information log on to

What we will do
In the next phase of our development we
propose to further enhance our Academic
provision in the following ways.

For young people we will continue to
ensure we are offering innovative
approaches to delivery of GCSE
retake programmes. This will include the
introduction of blended learning materials
and delivery, through the use of Century
Artificial Intelligence online software.

We will look to develop best practice
in delivery of our GCSE mathematics
programmes through further
enhancements to our delivery model,
introduction of a learner mentoring
scheme utilising our A level learners
and continuing to develop our teaching
staff through collaboration with
other providers.

We will respond to changing government        We will introduce an A level Prefect              We will further strengthen our working
policy, led by the introduction of            scheme, giving successful second year             relationship with the Dudley
T Levels and associated curriculum            learners the opportunity to develop wider         Academies Trust schools and beyond to
reform, to ensure we continue to deliver      leadership skills and to lead on a subject        form subject tutor links, raise aspirations
the correct English and mathematics           mentor programme to support first                 in young people and support them with
programmes to learners based on               year learners.                                    transition to A level programmes through a
their individual needs and aspirations.                                                         range of engagement activities.
                                              We will continue to work with the
We will maintain our broad offer of           University of Wolverhampton                       For adults we will enhance our offer
A level subjects, introducing new             through the ‘aspire to higher                     of programmes aimed at supporting
subjects where there is a local demand.       education’ programme to target learners           adults to transition into higher level
We will enhance our promotion of A level      at risk of not continuing to University and       programmes, including GCSE retakes
pathways linked to progression to             ensuring they are supported to do so.             and Access programmes.
the Black Country and Marches Institute of
                                              Whilst not a mandatory element of the             With the expansion opportunities
Technology for higher education and degree
                                              programme of study, we will introduce             provided by the Black Country and Marches
level Apprenticeships, including Product
                                              more opportunities for learners to gain           Institute of Technology we will increase
Design and STEM subjects.
                                              valuable work experience during                   the number of learners in higher
We will continue our focus on a high          their A level studies to support their            academic programmes – broadening
grades strategy for our A level learners      progression to higher studies and beyond.         not only the range of programmes
by further enhancing our mindset                                                                but the mode of delivery with more
                                              We will offer high quality advice                 blended learning integrated into our
programme, target setting and support for     and guidance to help learners make
learners. By the end of this strategic plan                                                     academic delivery.
                                              good decisions about their education
we expect our high grade performance          and career. We will continue to position          We will continue to promote and develop
to be above national rates, including a       Apprenticeships as an important                   our offer of higher level programmes,
significant increase in learners achieving    component of higher education,                    enabling more people to study locally
the very highest grades (A*-B).               developing robust information and advice          and in a cost effective way. As part of
                                              for potential apprentices.                        this, we will increase learner choice
We will further develop our systems
                                                                                                by offering an extended range of
for identifying gifted A level                We will deliver a series of annual events         degrees, foundation degrees, higher
learners and deliver bespoke support          aimed at supporting young people to               qualifications, and the many types of
for them to achieve places at Russell         make the transition to high level                 Apprenticeships involving study at a
Group Universities through a new              study, including events for parents. This         higher level.
honours programme. This will include          will include working with employers
advanced master classes and further           to promote opportunities for higher               We will work with the West Midlands
development of our relationships with         Apprenticeship roles.                             Combined Authority to broaden funding
key partner universities.                                                                       opportunities for adults looking to
                                              We will extend the remit of our                   retrain in priority sectors and
We will continue to develop our use of        Employment Hub to support A level                 programmes that support their
digital technologies to enhance the           learners with finding Apprenticeship              progression to higher level study.
delivery of A levels and to support learner   positions for their higher level studies,
self-study and preparation for exams.         linked to local and national employers.

                                                                                          For more information log on to

     6b. Adult programmes for learners
     returning to studies or preparing
     for employment

     Context                                             Where we are now?                              What we will do
     Adult education in the UK has had                   Since the last strategic plan enrolments at    The college takes seriously its
     a turbulent few years with changes                  the college over the last few years have       responsibility for supporting local adults
     in national funding priorities having a             broadly followed regional trends, with the     to gain qualifications which enhance
     significant impact on the types and volumes         bulk of our adult provision (45%) being        their opportunities and prospects. We
     of funded adult provision. The Augar                below level 2.                                 understand a number of adults have
     Review published in July 2019, proposed                                                            significant barriers to learning which
     a raft of measures aimed at strengthening           We have also focussed our adult provision      can include low levels of English,
     technical education and refunding further           on ESOL (English to Speakers of Other          mathematics and digital skills. We aim
     education colleges; increasing flexibility and      Languages) and on functional skills in order   to provide programmes which remove
     lifelong learning in order to boost adult           to cater for the needs of the immediate        these barriers and enable more adults to
     participation in learning.                          populations we serve.                          access the higher level qualifications and
                                                                                                        training they need to progress.
     The West Midlands adult population have             Throughout the lifetime of the last plan
     lower skills than many other areas of the           we have continued to provide positive          We will develop flexible and
     UK with 13% of all residents having no              outcomes for our adult learners with           fast track programmes for adults
     formal qualifications and forecasts predict         93.7% of completing learners progressing       to achieve English and mathematics
     that changes in employment and advances             on to a positive destination (education,       qualifications up to level 2.
     in technology will mean that jobs accessible        training or employment), on completion         Increasing the number of adults in
     to those with no qualifications will fall by        of their studies with us. Achievement rates    our community gaining qualifications in
     42% between 2012 and 2022.                          have remained strong and are at or above       English and mathematics.
                                                         national rates at all levels.
     Coupled with this, modelling focussing                                                             In partnership with the West Midlands
     on level 4 skills has identified a need for         More recently we have worked with the          Combined Authority we will ensure a
     more adults in the labour market to have            West Midlands Combined Authority to            greater number of our adult education
     higher level skills. 23,160 worker shortages        pilot a number of initiatives looking to       budget learners follow programmes
     have been identified in the Black Country           engage adults in education. The Career         at level 3 and above.
     Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), while           Learning Pilots, Flexible Learning Fund and
     Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP                 ESOL for Work projects enabled more
     recorded 73,320 shortages, with 170,170 in          adults to access learning by removing
     Coventry and Warwickshire LEP.                      barriers of funding or time and access.

     The West Midlands Regional Skills Plan
     recognises that the West Midlands
     Combined Authority has an opportunity
     through their commissioning of the adult
     education budget to generate a shift in
     the way the region works together to
     deliver skills for adults. There is a significant
     amount of investment – over £100m
     – available to fund adult learning, the
     majority of which is currently below level
     2. Whilst this is meeting a need the West
     Midlands Combined Authority want to
     see a significant increase in the number of
     level 3 and 4 qualifications being delivered,
     particularly in priority sectors.

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