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College celebrates league table success

Ellen Thinnesen

Sunderland College has confirmed its position as the top college in the North East, a new league table reveals.

Using official government data, more than 200 colleges were ranked in the FE Week league table which took into account learner and employer satisfaction rates as well as positive progression for 16 to 18-year-olds and adult student employment rates.

The college scored consistently high outcomes, achieving significantly above average results across all areas.

It attained nine points out of ten for learner and employer satisfaction, and secured an overall score of 33 which is only two points less than the highest ranking college in the league table.

Ellen Thinnesen, Sunderland College’s principal and chief executive, said the results are indicative of the college’s ‘outstanding’ approach to education and employer support.

“Our focus is always on the individual, whether that is a 16-year-old student who is beginning their further education journey, an adult who is returning to education to upskill or retrain, or a business which we are supporting,” said Ellen.

“No matter what their needs, we offer them the highest level of specialist teaching and training, and that plays a crucial role in opening up future employment and education opportunities, as well as strengthening the North East economy.

“We’re absolutely delighted with the results of this league table, which reflects the hard work and passion of the entire college – our staff, students and governors – and the exceptional relationships we have with our partner organisations and the employers we work with.”

The release of the league table comes as the college is celebrating its success at picking up a prestigious accolade for its engagement with employers.

Sunderland College was presented with a national Beacon Award by the Association of Colleges for its strategic approach to employer engagement and apprenticeship growth.

Ellen added: “The past few years have been pivotal for the college with the significant investment programme we have implemented across our campuses – including the launch of our £30million flagship technical city centre campus last year – and a number of other projects we have put in place to ensure we remain ahead of the curve. However, we do not believe in resting on our laurels and we will continue with our progressive approach to strengthening our position in the further education sector.”

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