From education to employment



A student who achieved his GCSEs as part of North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College’s alternative schooling provision has enjoyed a T Level work placement at Raymond Blanc’s double Michelin-starred restaurant Le Manoir Aux Quat’Saisons. Matehullah Mastan, who joined NWSLC’s Inspire programme from George Eliot Academy in Nuneaton in Year 10, gained a Distinction grade overall after the first year of his T Level in Business which he continues to study at Activate Learning’s City of Oxford College.

Matte’s family had moved from Afghanistan and his first language is Dari. He found the school environment challenging and progressed much better at NWSLC where he found the small group size and personalised support really helpful. His progress was exceptional, and in 2022, achieved the highest GCSE grades within his cohort, and gained the highest grade (6 for Geography) ever achieved by a student of the Inspire programme.

Matte said, “The Inspire programme was amazing for me because I felt that the teachers really wanted a better outcome for us all. They made a strong connection with us, and our group became a small community of its own, like a second family. I thought the Inspire provision was fantastic, even better than a private school because of the personalised support, small class sizes and the number of teachers who helped us.”

Matte achieved well at GCSE, with grade 5s for Science and English Language and a grade 4 for Maths. When his family decided to relocate to Oxford for a fresh start, Matte’s tutor helped him to transfer to a new college where he is really enjoying his studies. Work placements are a built-in element of T Levels and so when a speaker came to the college from Le Manoir, Matte asked if she could offer him a placement there – and she agreed!

Matte added, “Business is a natural subject for me because I have always spent time helping family members with business interests. I have been working this summer with my brother Ray whose friend runs a gardening and landscaping business. I really enjoyed working in the offices at the Le Manoir, it was an amazing experience and I even got to meet Raymond Blanc himself. The best part of that experience was getting the chance to sample Michelin-star standard food in the staff canteen!”

Earlier this year, Matte won the Rising Star Award at NWSLC’s annual Celebration of Achievement. Once he has completed his T Level in 2024, Matte is planning to go to university in London to study international business. His brother Zak, who also attended the Inspire provision at NWSLC, is already in London studying for a degree in music. Matte is interested in travelling the world as part of his career and hopes to go abroad to study or work in the future. 

Marion Plant, OBE FCGI, Principal and Chief Executive of North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College said,

“I am delighted to hear that Matte has progressed so well since moving on from our Inspire provision. Through the T Level route, and with his plans to move on to higher education, I have no doubt that Matte has a very bright future ahead.

“We understand that traditional schooling is not for everyone and so have designed our Inspire programme as an alternative provision for pupils in Year 10 and 11 pupils who are struggling to cope or thrive in mainstream education. Our small group classes are led by specialists to help pupils achieve GCSEs and functional skills qualifications. The college also offers growing provision for pupils who have been educated at home enabling them the opportunity to achieve GCSEs in maths and English.”

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