Centre's work with new arrivals hailed by Ofsted

October 07 2019
Centre's work with new arrivals hailed by Ofsted

AN ADULT learning centre based at Lawrence Hill has been found to be making “reasonable progress” by education watchdog Ofsted.

CJI Solutions, which trades as Local Learning, underwent a monitoring inspection due to new government rules.

The centre, which has another branch in Derby, specialises in teaching English, mathematics and information and communication technology. More than 500 learners have studied on courses with CJI so far this year, with around half of these originally from African countries, mostly Somalia and Sudan. Currently, 74 learners study in Bristol and 38 in Derby.

In her report, inspector Helen Flynn said: “Leaders and managers place a high priority on supporting learners who may be newly arrived in the UK, do not speak English as a first language or who may have other potential barriers to learning. They support adults in the local community who are not enrolled on CJI courses to find work by helping them to search for employment and write job applications.”

The report also said: “Tutors deliver appropriate, well-designed courses which help most learners to make good progress in developing relevant skills.”

Staff assess learners’ needs well, according to the report: “They ensure that learners study courses which help them to overcome potential personal and social barriers. Learners develop useful English, mathematics and digital skills which they use in their daily lives. Learners gain confidence in their skills and ability to communicate. Many of them gain improved independence because of their courses and the support they receive from CJI staff. Consequently, and often for the first time, learners venture into their local communities to access the services they need, for example visiting the doctors’ surgery.”

CJI was also found to have made “reasonable progress” in safeguarding with programmes developed to raise awareness of the fact that forced marriage and female genital mutilation are illegal in the UK.

These issues are explored thoroughly and develop learners’ understanding of relevant British law and values well,” Ms Flint said.

CJI also works with Bristol's Restore Trust to provide learners who are currently on probation with courses to help them find employment.

Ms Flint also pointed out where CJI could make improvements including more monitoring of the development of new skills and knowledge and further analysis of where learners go after they complete courses.

Local Learning is not connected to Myers-Insole Local Learning, a not-for-profit community interest company established in Bristol in 2005.