Feeling 'Good'

It is never a nice moment, as an education provider, to get that call from Ofsted to say they are coming in for an inspection. On 9th December, just as we were getting into the festive vibes, we got that call! Going through inspection can be a scary process, even when you are confident that you are a good provider. As Ofsted had recently launched their new Education Inspection Framework, it felt particularly daunting this time, as there were some big changes to the criteria that we would be measured against.

Prior to Ofsted’s arrival we had a meeting with all staff, to update everyone on the process and schedule. The message from the Management Team was “we are good, and we all work very hard to ensure that we are good, we now need to show them this.” We were told to carry on with our jobs as normal during the inspection, and not to be alarmed if an inspector popped into a session or stopped for a chat in the corridor. During the process, the inspectors met with a wide range of learners, employers and staff, and considered views from the surveys. They also examined learner files, work and evidence portfolios. The inspectors meticulously went about their business, gathering evidence to ensure they could make accurate judgements about us.

The two-day inspection went by in a flash and before we knew it we were getting the final verdict. It was great to hear the news...Ofsted also thought we continued to be a good provider! Our 'good' grade is thanks to the "high proportion of apprentices complete their programme successfully" and "highly qualified trainers use their extensive experience to plan on- and off-the-job training very well".

This was all down to the hard work of HBTC’s staff, who strive to provide a quality learning experience for all learners on a daily basis. Ofsted noted that "apprentices are carefully matched with employers so that they quickly become highly valued at work", "apprentices are well prepared for their future and have clear, realistic career plans that they are working towards"and "apprentices and learners develop their confidence and resilience through effective support from staff".

We are also extremely proud of the feedback we received from Ofted in regards to the additional support we provide learners, with Ofsted commenting that "apprentices who need additional support receive it quickly", that there is "high importance placed on keeping learners and apprentices safe" and that we have "highly impressive mental health support for staff, apprentices and learners".

We all breathed a sigh of relief and got back to doing what we do best - supporting learners. However, it is fair to say some extra drinks may have been consumed at the Christmas Party, a few days later!

Photo of Chris Dolman

Chris Dolman


Strategic Development Manager