Lewisham College was keen to be among the first to apply for assessment against the Training Quality Standard for a number of reasons. Generally, they feel it to be “an important instrument for professionalising the sector” and for themselves, they see real benefits in driving their business improvement.
The college found the Standard to be robust and challenging and, as an independent quality standard, they feel it offers something “the training industry has long needed” to identify good provision. The college also found the Standard to be very comprehensive, covering all areas of the business; College Principal Dame Ruth Silver said “this is the hardest and most thorough award we have ever undertaken.”
Mark Cook, Director of Business Development at Lewisham College added:
"The focus on impacts and outcomes, as well as structures and processes, meant that by testing ourselves against it, we could identify areas of good practice, as well as areas for improvement.“
Lewisham College felt that the Standard “was very robust, and a tough standard to achieve – which made it all the more worthwhile.” The assessment process was seen to be thorough and balanced with the assessor team providing feedback throughout.
The application was led and coordinated by the Director of Business Development but was a collaboration between all those involved with the college’s employer work including colleagues from curriculum areas, quality, learner services and corporate services.
The college has found a number of benefits of the Training Quality Standard including:
Mark Cook said:
"Our experience of the Standard was excellent. The Standard itself is an important enabler of business change, particularly within the Further Education sector.”
“The model is robust, with nothing wasted nor missing from the standard. The assessment process was tough but fair, and has really helped us to develop our business model further than we expected.”
“We have been big advocates of the TQS regionally and nationally, and we think that this is going to be one of the most important instruments in the professionalisation of the training industry.”