Yate students unable to complete their course after SGS College slashes funding
THE families of teenage students who have been told cuts have meant the boys cannot finish their college courses say they have been left in the lurch by education bosses.
Two Yate mothers have spoken of their frustration and disappointment after their sons were told by South Gloucestershire and Stroud College they did not have third-year places, despite having passed their first and second years.
Lewis Cole, 18, completed Levels 1 and 2 of his electrician’s course but on returning to the Filton campus this term was told the number of places on the Level 3 course had been cut.
His mother Carolyn, of Oak Close, says she has been told by college bosses that the 43-place course only had capacity for 18 students this year.
"He wanted to carry on studying," Carolyn told the Gazette. "We had no explanation at all until I contacted the college and then they said the places were allocated based on certain criteria; attendance, behaviour and performance.
"My son’s attendance was over 90 per cent. He loved going to college and never had any complaints about his behaviour and he passed everything.
"He had committed two years of his life to this and is now feeling totally disappointed. Basically they have let him down.
Lewis's cousin, Mitchell McCotter, also from Yate, is in a similar position. He has been told there is no place for him to complete his three-year plumbing course, despite being sent two acceptance letters.
The 18-year-old’s mother Maria said: "Mitchell went to the enrolment day last week where he was made to sit three exams.
"He was not aware he was going to do them and one was on gas, a subject he was supposed to be covering next year, so he got 37 per cent and didn’t get one of the 16 places.
"His self-esteem is now really low and I don’t think it is good enough."
College ice-principal Sara-Jane Watkins said: "The college is of course disappointed that the second class is not running, however, the college could not deliver two viable cohorts of Level 3 Electrical and as such has made the difficult decision to reduce to one group.
"Not enabling learners to progress does not follow the ethos of the college and as an educational institution we do, and will continue to do, everything in our power to ensure that learners do have the options available to them to allow them to achieve their goals."
She said an alternative option on an apprenticeship programme was available.
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