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Covid Recovery Commitments underpin support for College community

To continue to support the Solent, South Hampshire and Central South economic recovery from pandemic, Eastleigh College has launched its ‘Covid Recovery Commitments’ for the 2021/22 academic year. The commitments build on the college’s successful ’Covid-19 Bounce Back Pledge’ that was launched in July 2020.

Since July 2020 the College has successfully worked with over 900 employers with over 35 employers formally supporting the College’s pledge. In addition the College has:

  • Provided training for every new apprentice and employer who approached us to be their training provider.
  • Fulfilled our guarantee that every eligible 16-19 learner could study with us.
  • Fulfilled our guarantee that every adult whose ambition was to study an Access to HE or Higher Education course could study with us.
  • Committed a greater proportion of our allocated Adult Skills funding to retraining and upskilling.
  • Continued to provide Community Learning opportunities through onsite and flexible methods.
  • Ensured that a Covid secure learning environment was maintained at all times.

The 2021/22 commitments have been developed in the same year that the College celebrates its 60th anniversary with feedback and support from a number of stakeholders including business groups, employers, councils, schools and universities.

Paul Cox, Chief Executive and Principal said “As we look ahead to 2021/22, and in shaping our recovery commitments we have sought to build on the successes of our pledge whilst also ensuring we respond to feedback from stakeholders, fully recognise inputs from employers, and to also directly address concerns and to provide reassurance to queries raised through our online open events. As such we are confident that our commitments are based on a strong evidence of need from a wide cross section of our College community”.

The College’s six 2021/22 commitments are:

  • A guaranteed place for all eligible full time 16-18 students whether school, or College leaver whose ambition is to pursue a professional or technical career through one of our courses.
  • That we will maintain the capacity to train a minimum of 500 new apprentices.
  • A guaranteed place for all eligible adults wanting to enrol on one of our flexible, supportive and high quality full or part time Access or Higher Education (HE) courses.
  • That we will develop skills and succession plan guides for a range of sectors to support employers upskill their workforce and succession plan.
  • Further extend the opportunities available through Eastleigh College Online as well extending our range of flexible and blended adult courses.
  • Continue to provide a Covid secure learning environment that combined with our proven ability to deliver learning online will enable us to deliver all of our planned provision irrespective of any future restrictions due to the pandemic to deliver all of our planned provision irrespective of any future restrictions due to the pandemic.

Peter Joddrell, Deputy Principal said “By guaranteeing places for eligible 16-18, Access and HE learners we are directly responding to feedback and we hope that our guarantee provides the reassurance that individuals have sought from us during this continued period of uncertainty. Our capacity to train 500 new apprentices is also a strong statement of intent from the College with regards to being ‘fully open for business’ and that our high-quality provision is here to support employers recruit and retain the talent they need”.

Nicky Tramaseur, Head of Brand, Engagement and Learner Recruitment said “Our employer partners have asked us to simplify the myriad of funding and training opportunities available to them and we know from feedback that there is a real pressure on the recruitment and retention of talent. We expect our skills and succession plan guides to build on the initial employer information we published in April and see the guides becoming a ‘go to’ resource for busy and time pressured employers".

Jo Landon, Head of Adult and Online said “We launched Eastleigh College Online (ECO) in April 2021 following a range of successful pilots during the pandemic and in response to strong demand from individuals and employers. In addition our online provision has been strong throughout the pandemic as recognised by Ofsted. ECO also allows us to build flexible learning programmes in partnership with employers and we are already working with a number of the regions employers to develop training plans for their staff. We are always adding new opportunities to ECO and the platform complements our high performing campus-based provision”.

Kevin Jones, Vice Principal said “We have ensured a Covid secure learning environment throughout the pandemic and also continually enhanced our digital infrastructure in terms of capacity, speed and security. As we look ahead to 2021/22 we are optimistic and hopeful that the worst of the pandemic is behind us. However we are not complacent and our commitment to ensuring a Covid secure environment for learners, employers and staff is absolute”.

The full commitments can be found here.

Any individuals or organisations who are interested in joining forces to help deliver or simply support the commitments can email or use #covidrecovery tagging Eastleigh College on social media.