East Sussex College has been awarded Matrix Standard accreditation, the quality standard for providing students with Information, Advice, and Guidance (IAG).

The college previously held the accreditation under its former names of Sussex Coast College Hastings and Sussex Downs College but was reviewed following the merger.

Since the two colleges became East Sussex College back in March 2018, the organisation has been working hard to ensure that standards have been maintained and the level of IAG is the same across each of its campuses.

The college celebrated a successful review of its ability to provide current and prospective students with advice about further education, higher education, apprenticeships, and career pathways.

An IAG Assessor spent two days gathering evidence to mark against the Matrix Standard. The process included speaking and interviewing thirty individuals including members of the college’s management team, governors, teaching staff, current students, and one of the college’s employment partners.

The findings of the report showed that the college met the required standards and gave particular praise to the college’s ability to give IAG to potential and enrolled students throughout their learning journey.

The IAG given to students before they join the college is relevant and means that they are able to join a course, at the appropriate level, that is right for them. The guidance they receive while studying is also a core part of their course and enables them to maximise the benefits available.

The report also highlighted that the college understands the importance of giving IAG to help students prepare for sustainable employment and there has been an enhanced investment in making links with employers, universities, schools and other local providers.

The merger between the two colleges has also created the opportunity for managers to share good practice within their specific specialist areas. For example, careers education programmes have been adopted across the East Sussex College Group, and following a successful pilot in Hastings, My Future Starts Here, an external IAG provider, now delivers impartial IAG provision at Eastbourne and Lewes.

The college will hold the Matrix standard for three years. It will complete self-assessments to maintain and improve their IAG standards, before the next accreditation review in 2021.


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