Truro and Penwith College has been rated in the top 5% for student progress following a national analysis of this summer’s results of 3,000 schools and colleges across England.

The college’s A level value added performance over the last three years, just calculated by the national ALPS (A level Performance System) score, shows that as well as outstanding A level achievements on results days, students have also made strong progress in relation to their GCSE starting points.

The successful student cohorts, says the college, include many learners with GCSE outcomes that would not have secured them a place at selective institutions but who have far outperformed all expectations at Truro and Penwith College. In 2019 alone this included 1,200 who progressed to university.

Director of quality, Lowenna Bradley, explained: “The reason that we focus on the ‘value added,’ or progress, above all other indicators is that they are the most valid measure of the quality of our work as teachers.

“You cannot get high progress scores by selecting for ability or only taking learners with better outcomes and experiences at their schools. I am delighted that learners and teachers here have had their outstanding work recognised by ALPS.”

Truro and Penwith College principal, David Walrond, linked the national ALPS accolade for the college to the socio-economic prospects of individual learners and of Cornwall.

He said: “People from all parts of the political spectrum talk about using education to ‘improve life chances’ or ‘boost social mobility’, or ‘close the opportunity gap’. They mean much the same thing. It only happens post-16 where schools and colleges take each individual learner as far as they can go, regardless of their previous achievement.

“This requires outstanding teaching and support. This recognition is great news for the college, but the real success story is about learners across Cornwall, the doors that now open to them, and the contributions they will now go on to make.”