College comes under fire due to financial 'inadequacies'

Dorset Echo: College comes under fire due to financial 'inadequacies' College comes under fire due to financial 'inadequacies'

WEYMOUTH College’s financial position has been severely criticised for having ‘significant weaknesses.’

A review by the Further Education Commissioner has been carried out after the college’s financial health was deemed ‘inadequate’.

It found that there is a need for ‘more stringent financial security’ and has recommended nine actions, including a ‘refresh’ of board members with financial expertise.

The report says that although Weymouth College has ‘developed its provision significantly’ over the past two years and ‘worked hard at improving the quality of what it does’, there has not been ‘due consideration of the financial costs of such developments’.

It states: “The board and senior leadership team lack the financial expertise necessary to run a college of this size and need additional support to return the college to a position of financial strength.”

Minister for skills and enterprise Matthew Hancock said in a letter to the college: “The assessment identified significant weaknesses in the capacity and capability of the existing governance and leadership to deliver financial recovery.

“Governors are guardians of public money and are responsible for ensuring its effective and efficient use. It is therefore essential that the governing body has the necessary skills and experience, and ensures that the leadership has the necessary skills and experience to fulfil these responsibilities.

“(It is) essential that the governance and leadership of Weymouth College recognise the significant weaknesses identified in the FE Commissioner’s review and put in place a robust action that will deliver financial recovery.”

In November, the college said it was facing ‘a challenging public sector economic climate.’ The report found that part of the problem began when the college embarked on ‘ambitious plans’ to grow its provision for 16 to 18 year-olds ‘after several years of decline in learner numbers.’ But ‘unfortunately the college did not ensure it had the necessary finances to fund all its developments in advance.

‘The college asked the Education Funding Agency (EFA) to consider providing in-year growth funding but this was not approved.

‘The college also asked the EFA to accelerate its grant profile for 2013/14 but this was not approved.’ Following intervention, the college produced a ‘draft recovery plan’ but in its present form, this plan ‘is unlikely to deliver the necessary return to a budget surplus and the repayment of the college’s loans within a reasonable time period.’

  • The college re-introduced A-levels back into its curriculum in 2012. The controversial decision to drop A-levels in 2011 sparked protests among students and a march was organised by the Students’ Union to demonstrate support for the subjects.

Cost-cutting moves lead to staff redundancies 

STAFF numbers at the college have been reduced since 2010, when the college employed 650 workers.

In November 2013, the college had 492 workers on its payroll.

Nine people were made redundant in July 2010 after the college received a half-million-pound shortfall in funding from the Learning and Skills Council.

Changes to the senior management team were made in 2011 after a vote of no confidence which was backed by Unison and the University and College Union (UCU). Fourteen staff members faced being made redundant in a cost-cutting move last November.

A two-and-a-half-week consultation was being carried out at the college to explore the option of axing 14 staff members, including a team of full and part time ‘learning mentors’ and some administrative workers.

More student numbers lead to rapid transformation

LEADERS at Weymouth College say ‘short-term financial pressures’ have been caused by its ‘rapid growth’ and increased student numbers.

Vice-Principal Rob Jones said: “Weymouth College is undergoing an impressive transformation.

“We’re one of the fastest growing colleges in the UK and our latest success rates are among the highest in the country. “Ironically, this rapid growth causes some short-term financial pressures.”

Principal Liz Myles said: “Both the management and governors of the college are fully engaged with the Commissioner and his team and remain fully committed to building on improvements that are already under way and to make further changes where appropriate.”

The college, which is now in the top 10 per cent of UK colleges based on latest success rates, has experienced increased financial pressures due in part to increases in student numbers.

Axed employee hits out at report findings AN AXED member of staff has hit out following the findings and labelled the situation at the college ‘scandalous.’ The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, said: “I was made redundant at Christmas and this report shows there are severe financial problems.

“I am so upset. I and my colleagues lost our jobs and now this report shows the college can’t deliver a sustainable financial recovery. It really makes me feel sad because it’s education that will lose out at the end of the day.”

  • WEYMOUTH College was told it ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted inspectors last year.

The college’s ‘overall effectiveness’ rating had not improved since its last inspection in 2010, when it was considered ‘satisfactory’, according to the former Ofsted framework.

But principal Liz Myles, who started in the role in November 2012, vowed that the college would be ‘outstanding’ within five years.

A NUMBER of recommendations from the Further Education Commissioner were outlined in the report:

  • The chairman should refresh the membership of the board with new members bringing financial and FE expertise
  • The board should develop and implement a targeted training programme to enable them to understand better the FE sector and also the contribution that that board can make to the college’s development
  •  The principal should engage a ‘peer mentor’ with a financial expertise to join the senior leadership team
  • The chair and principal should conduct a skills analysis of the senior leadership team and then implement a training programme to ensure that staff have the necessary financial skills to address the college’s current difficulties
  • The senior leadership team should produce a detailed curriculum plan for 2014/15 and ensure that it is resourced efficiently.

They should then produce a revised recovery plan which is both realistic and consistent with the curriculum offer

  • The senior leadership team should also review its risk management processes in the light of the experience of the last two years and ensure that they are robust
  • In the light of the senior leadership team’s skills gaps in this area, and the urgency of the task, the college should secure additional resources to enable this work to be done
  • The FE Commissioner should closely monitor the college and report on progress

Comments (30)

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7:54am Wed 2 Jul 14

localgrumble says...

This doesn't really surprise me having seen within the last year the Principle and one of her Vice Principles travel first class (at rush hour) to London by train. The college also regularly puts up staff for months on end at an expensive hotel on Dorchester Road for long periods of time (which is common knowledge amongst the staff) when cheaper alternatives are available. They happily flaunt the cash in the most inappropriate ways.
This doesn't really surprise me having seen within the last year the Principle and one of her Vice Principles travel first class (at rush hour) to London by train. The college also regularly puts up staff for months on end at an expensive hotel on Dorchester Road for long periods of time (which is common knowledge amongst the staff) when cheaper alternatives are available. They happily flaunt the cash in the most inappropriate ways. localgrumble
  • Score: 20

9:05am Wed 2 Jul 14

weymouthfox says...

Were not Miss Myles and Mr Jones brought in to make the college more efficient and financially stable? Clearly they have failed, so should be sacked forthwith.
Were not Miss Myles and Mr Jones brought in to make the college more efficient and financially stable? Clearly they have failed, so should be sacked forthwith. weymouthfox
  • Score: 21

11:08am Wed 2 Jul 14

Schrodinger's Cat says...

You have to say Mr Jones's spin doctor/PR skills are impressive. It's the rapid growth of the college and its increasing popularity that has led to short-term financial pressures? This includes laying off staff, while student numbers are increasing? Hmm.
You have to say Mr Jones's spin doctor/PR skills are impressive. It's the rapid growth of the college and its increasing popularity that has led to short-term financial pressures? This includes laying off staff, while student numbers are increasing? Hmm. Schrodinger's Cat
  • Score: 1

11:48am Wed 2 Jul 14

JamesYoung says...

When I did my A levels (87-89) Weymouth College was THE place to go and very few students opted for Hardyes or others. I cannot understand how anything than a long period of mismanagement can have led to this current situation. Some of the stories I hear from people who work there are astonishing and include clumsy attempts at getting staff to accept moves to zero hours contracts presumably as an inept attempt at avoiding redundancy payments. Fortunately the person concerned had her wits about her and the college changed direction. But it strikes me that the financial and hr directors are inept and the college lacks direction.
When I did my A levels (87-89) Weymouth College was THE place to go and very few students opted for Hardyes or others. I cannot understand how anything than a long period of mismanagement can have led to this current situation. Some of the stories I hear from people who work there are astonishing and include clumsy attempts at getting staff to accept moves to zero hours contracts presumably as an inept attempt at avoiding redundancy payments. Fortunately the person concerned had her wits about her and the college changed direction. But it strikes me that the financial and hr directors are inept and the college lacks direction. JamesYoung
  • Score: 8

12:11pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Caption Sensible says...

Get a proper university up and running in Weymouth.

The college has never been the same since it left Newstead Road.

A lot of the stuff on offer now is pure Mickey Mouse material and only equips the student with service industry slave skills.
Get a proper university up and running in Weymouth. The college has never been the same since it left Newstead Road. A lot of the stuff on offer now is pure Mickey Mouse material and only equips the student with service industry slave skills. Caption Sensible
  • Score: 1

12:39pm Wed 2 Jul 14

elloello1980 says...

the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions...

Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result).

No real engineering courses!

Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.
the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past. elloello1980
  • Score: 6

1:03pm Wed 2 Jul 14

caapprentice says...

Why can't I get emails when comments are added?
Why can't I get emails when comments are added? caapprentice
  • Score: -4

1:10pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Snazzie_weymouth says...

It's hardly surprising the college is in financial trouble. I wouldn't have thought senior management on their 60-120k(with bonus) salaries, and only work there 1 or 2 times a week will be to concerned though. From what been told hardly any of them are local or even live here so why would they even care (the phrase 'take the money and run' springs to mind)
No doubt they will make the lecturing staff that work there on way below national teaching wage, that actually earn the money for the college (and care about the students) redundant to claw back some money. Moral has always been low at Weymouth college, God knows what it must be like there now!!
It's hardly surprising the college is in financial trouble. I wouldn't have thought senior management on their 60-120k(with bonus) salaries, and only work there 1 or 2 times a week will be to concerned though. From what been told hardly any of them are local or even live here so why would they even care (the phrase 'take the money and run' springs to mind) No doubt they will make the lecturing staff that work there on way below national teaching wage, that actually earn the money for the college (and care about the students) redundant to claw back some money. Moral has always been low at Weymouth college, God knows what it must be like there now!! Snazzie_weymouth
  • Score: 13

1:29pm Wed 2 Jul 14

localgrumble says...

It's the non-teaching staff (the back bone of the college who are there all year round) that get hit the hardest with constant redundancy threat, low wages, increasing work loads and stress with no appreciation or support because they don't teach. All this whilst Liz Myles drives to work in a different, expensive looking car everyday. And they wonder why morale is so low.
It's the non-teaching staff (the back bone of the college who are there all year round) that get hit the hardest with constant redundancy threat, low wages, increasing work loads and stress with no appreciation or support because they don't teach. All this whilst Liz Myles drives to work in a different, expensive looking car everyday. And they wonder why morale is so low. localgrumble
  • Score: 16

2:37pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Foursite says...

A lot of compromise agreements I suspect.
A lot of compromise agreements I suspect. Foursite
  • Score: 1

2:56pm Wed 2 Jul 14

DorchDiva says...

went to Weymouth college last year, tried to get hardship/bursaries and was told I wasn't eligible even though I knew I was through researching on the internet. they said they only had so much money left and i was lied too left right and center by different members of staff.

This forced me to leave my course and find a full time job working in a dead end place.

Thanks weymouth college!
went to Weymouth college last year, tried to get hardship/bursaries and was told I wasn't eligible even though I knew I was through researching on the internet. they said they only had so much money left and i was lied too left right and center by different members of staff. This forced me to leave my course and find a full time job working in a dead end place. Thanks weymouth college! DorchDiva
  • Score: -8

3:21pm Wed 2 Jul 14

DorsetDogger76 says...

What is the Principle and Vice principles doing to a great community college. Kingston Maurward and other colleges must be laughing at you, and if this is true about your wages then that is disgusting that you pay yourselves that much and do nothing to keep the college afloat. You should be ashamed what you have done to a good college. It is also noted in the community that friends of the principal that have come down from Kingston Apon Thames have been given new job roles as well as big pay increases then completely make a hash of things and have to get bailed out of their mistakes. Your college has got some great lecturing staff who really work hard for peanuts and give all of their heart and soul...
Well done lecturing staff and how dare you VP's and the Principle
What is the Principle and Vice principles doing to a great community college. Kingston Maurward and other colleges must be laughing at you, and if this is true about your wages then that is disgusting that you pay yourselves that much and do nothing to keep the college afloat. You should be ashamed what you have done to a good college. It is also noted in the community that friends of the principal that have come down from Kingston Apon Thames have been given new job roles as well as big pay increases then completely make a hash of things and have to get bailed out of their mistakes. Your college has got some great lecturing staff who really work hard for peanuts and give all of their heart and soul... Well done lecturing staff and how dare you VP's and the Principle DorsetDogger76
  • Score: 24

3:47pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Glasshalfull says...

If what has been said about the Principal and Vice Principal is true, they should be ashamed and resign immediately. Weymouth needs a F E college, not just for the vocational courses but for academic qualifications too. I can foresee a time when there will be only one A level provider in this town and although that may suit some, school sixth forms are not for everyone. Our loss will be Kingston Maurward and Thomas Hardye's gain.
If what has been said about the Principal and Vice Principal is true, they should be ashamed and resign immediately. Weymouth needs a F E college, not just for the vocational courses but for academic qualifications too. I can foresee a time when there will be only one A level provider in this town and although that may suit some, school sixth forms are not for everyone. Our loss will be Kingston Maurward and Thomas Hardye's gain. Glasshalfull
  • Score: 8

4:21pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Sidney Hall says...

Its good to read that the college courses are improving, shame about the funding and financial mismanagement. That improvement wont be maintained then. The college will always struggle as the schools with 6th forms attempt to ringfence their preferred FE students. The college then doesn't have the "guaranteed" high performers to give top results, thus generate more student interest and attract more income.
The college has its place though and offers those that want a change from their school an opportunity to excel when they otherwise might not. It also offers the chance to do vocational courses and others less offered. I hope they get some funding and good management to improve their portfiolio for the benefit of our local kids. Nobody wants a regular train ride to Poole etc for education.
Its good to read that the college courses are improving, shame about the funding and financial mismanagement. That improvement wont be maintained then. The college will always struggle as the schools with 6th forms attempt to ringfence their preferred FE students. The college then doesn't have the "guaranteed" high performers to give top results, thus generate more student interest and attract more income. The college has its place though and offers those that want a change from their school an opportunity to excel when they otherwise might not. It also offers the chance to do vocational courses and others less offered. I hope they get some funding and good management to improve their portfiolio for the benefit of our local kids. Nobody wants a regular train ride to Poole etc for education. Sidney Hall
  • Score: 6

4:28pm Wed 2 Jul 14

CoogarUK.com says...

This has been an ongoing situation since incorporation in 1993 and I speak from experience.
This has been an ongoing situation since incorporation in 1993 and I speak from experience. CoogarUK.com
  • Score: 3

4:32pm Wed 2 Jul 14

weymouthfox says...

P.S. Can the Echo tell s who else is on the Board of Directors?
P.S. Can the Echo tell s who else is on the Board of Directors? weymouthfox
  • Score: 4

4:38pm Wed 2 Jul 14

February1948 says...

elloello1980 wrote:
the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.
What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.
[quote][p][bold]elloello1980[/bold] wrote: the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.[/p][/quote]What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise. February1948
  • Score: 2

4:41pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Snazzie_weymouth says...

Well it's not surprise to from talk in town that college staff haven't had a pay rise in over 5 years. Last one was 0.5%! Staff have now been told of an increase in working hours and taking on job roles that are not even paid! Talk about beating the good will out of all the staff. And I couldn't agree more about support staff (what's left of them) people get paid more working as trainees in well known fast food takeaways! (and there's probably more prospects to progress working there
Well it's not surprise to from talk in town that college staff haven't had a pay rise in over 5 years. Last one was 0.5%! Staff have now been told of an increase in working hours and taking on job roles that are not even paid! Talk about beating the good will out of all the staff. And I couldn't agree more about support staff (what's left of them) people get paid more working as trainees in well known fast food takeaways! (and there's probably more prospects to progress working there Snazzie_weymouth
  • Score: 16

5:26pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Weymouth4 says...

The College has gone back to the days of an overload of highly-paid managers and not enough lecturing/support staff when they're the ones who make the difference! Too many managers have come in who have previously worked together; nepetism at it's very worst! Stop spending money on a fancy reception area and Costa Coffee (!!!) and employ the staff who teach and support. That's what it should be about. Education!!!
The College has gone back to the days of an overload of highly-paid managers and not enough lecturing/support staff when they're the ones who make the difference! Too many managers have come in who have previously worked together; nepetism at it's very worst! Stop spending money on a fancy reception area and Costa Coffee (!!!) and employ the staff who teach and support. That's what it should be about. Education!!! Weymouth4
  • Score: 12

6:47pm Wed 2 Jul 14

cj07589 says...

Sounds like Weymouth College must have attended the Labour party's school for economic incompetence then.
Sounds like Weymouth College must have attended the Labour party's school for economic incompetence then. cj07589
  • Score: -4

7:19pm Wed 2 Jul 14

my username was already taken says...

Weymouth4 wrote:
The College has gone back to the days of an overload of highly-paid managers and not enough lecturing/support staff when they're the ones who make the difference! Too many managers have come in who have previously worked together; nepetism at it's very worst! Stop spending money on a fancy reception area and Costa Coffee (!!!) and employ the staff who teach and support. That's what it should be about. Education!!!
Ah, nepotism. Yes, the art of the new principal giving her daughter a job in HR on arrival. A job that was never advertised.
I well remember attending her first staff meeting as principal when she made it very clear that any underperformance would not be tolerated - and further meetings where she publicly slated various departments and individuals - particularly just before Ofsted.
So Liz, your underperformance won't be tolerated either. Please leave your ID badge at Reception on your way out.
As for Rob Jones, your comments serve only to prove you STILL don't understand the gravity of the situation. "Ah yes, but it's because of this and we're sorting it out." No, Rob, it's because SLT is financially incompetent. Your spending priorities are all wrong and rebranding the college is just papering over the cracks- albeit with £50 notes.
[quote][p][bold]Weymouth4[/bold] wrote: The College has gone back to the days of an overload of highly-paid managers and not enough lecturing/support staff when they're the ones who make the difference! Too many managers have come in who have previously worked together; nepetism at it's very worst! Stop spending money on a fancy reception area and Costa Coffee (!!!) and employ the staff who teach and support. That's what it should be about. Education!!![/p][/quote]Ah, nepotism. Yes, the art of the new principal giving her daughter a job in HR on arrival. A job that was never advertised. I well remember attending her first staff meeting as principal when she made it very clear that any underperformance would not be tolerated - and further meetings where she publicly slated various departments and individuals - particularly just before Ofsted. So Liz, your underperformance won't be tolerated either. Please leave your ID badge at Reception on your way out. As for Rob Jones, your comments serve only to prove you STILL don't understand the gravity of the situation. "Ah yes, but it's because of this and we're sorting it out." No, Rob, it's because SLT is financially incompetent. Your spending priorities are all wrong and rebranding the college is just papering over the cracks- albeit with £50 notes. my username was already taken
  • Score: 18

10:45pm Wed 2 Jul 14

surelythisnameisnottaken says...

February1948 wrote:
elloello1980 wrote:
the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.
What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.
Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism).....
. rant over.....
[quote][p][bold]February1948[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]elloello1980[/bold] wrote: the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.[/p][/quote]What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.[/p][/quote]Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism)..... . rant over..... surelythisnameisnottaken
  • Score: 13

9:07am Thu 3 Jul 14

Snazzie_weymouth says...

surelythisnameisnott
aken
wrote:
February1948 wrote:
elloello1980 wrote:
the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.
What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.
Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism).....

. rant over.....
No clearly you do not work there anymore, feeling undervalued, unappreciated, de-motivated daily, expected to carry out duties unpaid and not in job description, all while observing blatant elitism and hugely inflated salaries when apparently there is no money for support staff and teaching staff to receive a long overdue payrise! And before you say 'get another job then' I do not even work there, I just know a few people that do, and they happen to love teaching, just not being treated so poorly.
[quote][p][bold]surelythisnameisnott aken[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]February1948[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]elloello1980[/bold] wrote: the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.[/p][/quote]What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.[/p][/quote]Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism)..... . rant over.....[/p][/quote]No clearly you do not work there anymore, feeling undervalued, unappreciated, de-motivated daily, expected to carry out duties unpaid and not in job description, all while observing blatant elitism and hugely inflated salaries when apparently there is no money for support staff and teaching staff to receive a long overdue payrise! And before you say 'get another job then' I do not even work there, I just know a few people that do, and they happen to love teaching, just not being treated so poorly. Snazzie_weymouth
  • Score: 9

12:55pm Thu 3 Jul 14

elloello1980 says...

surelythisnameisnott
aken
wrote:
February1948 wrote:
elloello1980 wrote:
the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.
What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.
Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism).....

. rant over.....
oh dear.

Hairdressers = low wages

Too many qualified builders = many becoming labourers.

Why go to college to become a labourer?

There is a huge shortfall in skilled and qualified engineers in this country. I work for a large company in which ~40% of engineers are from overseas, for that reason.

I had to travel to out of Dorset to gain my A levels in order to get into Uni.

Weymouth college sucks! get over it ;)
[quote][p][bold]surelythisnameisnott aken[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]February1948[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]elloello1980[/bold] wrote: the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.[/p][/quote]What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.[/p][/quote]Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism)..... . rant over.....[/p][/quote]oh dear. Hairdressers = low wages Too many qualified builders = many becoming labourers. Why go to college to become a labourer? There is a huge shortfall in skilled and qualified engineers in this country. I work for a large company in which ~40% of engineers are from overseas, for that reason. I had to travel to out of Dorset to gain my A levels in order to get into Uni. Weymouth college sucks! get over it ;) elloello1980
  • Score: -4

1:02pm Thu 3 Jul 14

Tinaturners_hip says...

Having worked at the college in the past this headline is completely unsurprising.

Not only is the college top heavy with exquisitely overpaid principals and directors who do little but shift rooms around and paint everything grey to give the place a new and inviting look but they fail to keep the core morale of the workers by constantly flaunting the college money on useless PR.

A wholly disfunctional establishment where the support staff are treated as second fiddle whilst they continue to employ specialist staff from miles away when they should be recruiting locally.

All image and little substance.
Having worked at the college in the past this headline is completely unsurprising. Not only is the college top heavy with exquisitely overpaid principals and directors who do little but shift rooms around and paint everything grey to give the place a new and inviting look but they fail to keep the core morale of the workers by constantly flaunting the college money on useless PR. A wholly disfunctional establishment where the support staff are treated as second fiddle whilst they continue to employ specialist staff from miles away when they should be recruiting locally. All image and little substance. Tinaturners_hip
  • Score: 6

7:11pm Thu 3 Jul 14

surelythisnameisnottaken says...

Snazzie_weymouth wrote:
surelythisnameisnott

aken
wrote:
February1948 wrote:
elloello1980 wrote:
the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.
What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.
Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism).....


. rant over.....
No clearly you do not work there anymore, feeling undervalued, unappreciated, de-motivated daily, expected to carry out duties unpaid and not in job description, all while observing blatant elitism and hugely inflated salaries when apparently there is no money for support staff and teaching staff to receive a long overdue payrise! And before you say 'get another job then' I do not even work there, I just know a few people that do, and they happen to love teaching, just not being treated so poorly.
I totally see where you & many others are coming from re concerns with management....I really am not defending them.....just the college itself & the 'good stuff' that it does. You're right, I never felt undervalued, de-motivated etc, because I was lucky to work for & in, a quality team. However FE full stop has too much pressure nationally....it's not just Weymouth & I did carry out hundreds of hours a year unpaid & beyond the job description....becau
se I chose too. You are also right...I would say 'get another job then' as nobody should waste their life working in an unhappy environment. I also appreciate that is not easy but it is possible. Massive respect for all those that work so hard at the college, whatever the level....let's see what the management do in response....but meanwhile...let's have some positive stories to balance it......
[quote][p][bold]Snazzie_weymouth[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]surelythisnameisnott aken[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]February1948[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]elloello1980[/bold] wrote: the college that teaches our kids to have low ambitions... Encouraging women to become hairdressers, and me to be builders (labourers as a result). No real engineering courses! Remember the days of Newstead Road? A lot could be learnt from our past.[/p][/quote]What the country really needs are good technical colleges. Most of these, formerly polytechnics, now have the title "University" and offer second-rate degrees in dumbed-down subjects. Technical colleges offered the very best in (yes) technical qualifications, turning out engineers, electricians and other valuable people, which is what the country is sadly lacking, hence the proliferation of such craftsmen from the Eastern Bloc. I appreciate the teaching profession doesn't like streamed grammar, tech, and secondary modern schools, but they worked in the past and gave aspiration to so many. And, of course, we parents would love to see a return to that system. It was a natural form of social mobility with many older professional people who were very bright children, having come from "deprived backgrounds" but able to move on in life. So, revert to being a technical college, Weymouth, get in some really good tutors who have done a real job in the real world, and be proud of yourself once more! I may have deviated a bit from the Echo article, for which I apologise.[/p][/quote]Weymouth College already provides a wide range of vocational qualifications - just because it has not got "technical college" in the title does not mean that it does not provide industry related qualifications. I am also not sure what the problem is with qualifying hairdressers and builders (and I know for a fact there is no eligibility criteria which states you have to be female for hairdressing and male for builders.....sad attempt at criticism without any evidence whatsoever. Oh....and the college has never been titled 'University' particularly as it concentrates mostly on further education and would have no status (legally or otherwise) to become a University. I find some comments on here bizarre and showing complete ignorance. Whilst I appreciate there is clearly some issues of concern regarding financial management, I love the way Dorset Echo (and shallow readers / disgruntled ex staff/students ) cannot wait to stick the knife in. I particularly like the entirely unbalanced representation of the article - nice catchy front page & inside spread of negativity.....oh and the tiny tiny box in the bottom page which recognises that Weymouth College is in the top 10 UK colleges in terms of success rates.....yep I can definitely see how Weymouth College is failing to serve it's community....Oh by the way, I am not a member of staff and nor am I related or friends with anyone in Senior Management. However.....I did work there once....for over 7 years and whilst I too have experienced my fair share of stormy weather....I don't believe it deserves the 'kicking' it gets about once every 3 months......give the place a break or report in a more balanced way (and with less undeserved sensationalism)..... . rant over.....[/p][/quote]No clearly you do not work there anymore, feeling undervalued, unappreciated, de-motivated daily, expected to carry out duties unpaid and not in job description, all while observing blatant elitism and hugely inflated salaries when apparently there is no money for support staff and teaching staff to receive a long overdue payrise! And before you say 'get another job then' I do not even work there, I just know a few people that do, and they happen to love teaching, just not being treated so poorly.[/p][/quote]I totally see where you & many others are coming from re concerns with management....I really am not defending them.....just the college itself & the 'good stuff' that it does. You're right, I never felt undervalued, de-motivated etc, because I was lucky to work for & in, a quality team. However FE full stop has too much pressure nationally....it's not just Weymouth & I did carry out hundreds of hours a year unpaid & beyond the job description....becau se I chose too. You are also right...I would say 'get another job then' as nobody should waste their life working in an unhappy environment. I also appreciate that is not easy but it is possible. Massive respect for all those that work so hard at the college, whatever the level....let's see what the management do in response....but meanwhile...let's have some positive stories to balance it...... surelythisnameisnottaken
  • Score: 1

5:22pm Fri 4 Jul 14

pebble mad says...

Not entirely certain this is the case now but when I worked at the college the finance function didn't report to Rob (for those suggesting he resign over this). Looks like he was put forward as a spokesperson rather than the senior manager responsible...
Not entirely certain this is the case now but when I worked at the college the finance function didn't report to Rob (for those suggesting he resign over this). Looks like he was put forward as a spokesperson rather than the senior manager responsible... pebble mad
  • Score: 4

8:24pm Sat 5 Jul 14

innocent-bystander says...

Weymouth College is an excellent college which is recovering from government funding cuts that have hit hard on the Further Education Sector. It would not suprise me if many other colleges are suffering from these issues.

To resolve this issue, the college may have employed staff from outside the local area, of whom have the expertise that are not available locally, in order to guarantee the college a prosperous future; in order to recover and build upon the current college's systems.

And, comments suggesting that 'the principal has a different car every day' are simply hyperbolic; and I am disappointed in those who feel the need to pick on tiny, private issues in order to accentuate the issue further, of which have no direct connection with the college whatsoever.
Weymouth College is an excellent college which is recovering from government funding cuts that have hit hard on the Further Education Sector. It would not suprise me if many other colleges are suffering from these issues. To resolve this issue, the college may have employed staff from outside the local area, of whom have the expertise that are not available locally, in order to guarantee the college a prosperous future; in order to recover and build upon the current college's systems. And, comments suggesting that 'the principal has a different car every day' are simply hyperbolic; and I am disappointed in those who feel the need to pick on tiny, private issues in order to accentuate the issue further, of which have no direct connection with the college whatsoever. innocent-bystander
  • Score: 3

9:19pm Sat 5 Jul 14

Spanner123 says...

Hear,hear, at last someone speaking some sense. I work there, have done for 9 years and it is better than ever. All public sector employers are under pressure to do more with less not just FE colleges. Give the college a break, leave us alone ,because you'd miss it if it was gone!
Hear,hear, at last someone speaking some sense. I work there, have done for 9 years and it is better than ever. All public sector employers are under pressure to do more with less not just FE colleges. Give the college a break, leave us alone ,because you'd miss it if it was gone! Spanner123
  • Score: 2

2:36pm Sun 6 Jul 14

Weymouth4 says...

Actually, some staff who have been employed from out of the area have little or no expertise in their field; they have been hand-picked by certain senior members of staff as they have previously worked together. And they, in turn, have "poached" other ex-colleagues who quite clearly don't have the expertise either! I'm not against the College employing staff who aren't local but for goodness sake, make sure they have the skills appropriate to the job they are employed for at hugely-inflated salaries! And yes, other FE Colleges are in the same position with a lack of funding; that's why it's so important to keep the lecturing/support staff who have trained to do their job and do a very good job at that, at the College.
Actually, some staff who have been employed from out of the area have little or no expertise in their field; they have been hand-picked by certain senior members of staff as they have previously worked together. And they, in turn, have "poached" other ex-colleagues who quite clearly don't have the expertise either! I'm not against the College employing staff who aren't local but for goodness sake, make sure they have the skills appropriate to the job they are employed for at hugely-inflated salaries! And yes, other FE Colleges are in the same position with a lack of funding; that's why it's so important to keep the lecturing/support staff who have trained to do their job and do a very good job at that, at the College. Weymouth4
  • Score: 7
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