From education to employment

Barry College focuses on its learners

Learners were given a chance to have their say on how their College is run this week in the first-ever Barry College Focus Group sessions. Three groups of around 16 learners from across the College’s sites and course areas attended a series of information-sharing sessions at the Colcot Road campus.  The first session covered the student experience, looking at how their induction went and what they thought about extracurricular activities and tutorials. Next, the learners went on to discuss the College’s image, covering how they saw the College before they started their course and how they felt about it now. Finally, a session examined student behaviour, looking at the Code of Conduct and disciplinary procedures. Feedback was then presented to Barry College Principal, Paul Halstead. Issues raised for further discussion included how the College could provide activities during lunch breaks, and promoting relations between the different age and cultural groups of students. It was also noted that while some learners were unsure about coming to College, once they had settled in they recommended College courses to their friends. Principal Paul Halstead said: “As a College we have a very simple aim, and that is to be an excellent College. That will mean different things to different people, which is why it is important for us to collect people’s views.”[1/2]A series of meetings will be called to go over the detail of the group’s findings and work up proposals for addressing them, he added. The Focus Groups proved popular with Barry College learners. IT learner Joe Jones said: “It’s good – it brings together people with different opinions and you can learn from other people’s opinions.  “You’re getting together with groups of people you might not usually get together with and everyone says what they think so you get to hear all these different views. If you asked a tutor these sort of questions they tend to be biased towards the College, but by asking the students you’re getting a first person perspective.” Art & Design learner Nicala Hellinger agreed. “I thought it was a really good idea – and it’s been much more informal than the student council meetings we have,” she said. “People felt free to say things that they wouldn’t normally so it’s far more productive. The College is right to ask us what we think about it and how things could improve – it makes for a happier environment, doesn’t it?” Notes for editors

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  • For more information contact Chris Baker at Barry College on 01446 724015 or [email protected]


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