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Student Life » Parents Zone
On this page, we’ve dedicated some information for you, as parents or guardians. We hope you enjoy the read…
Along with choosing a career area, every young person also needs to decide how they are going to achieve their goal. Here we look at the options available:
There’s a big appeal in finding Work and earning your own money. However, many of our mature students, who entered the workplace at 16 years old, come back to the College later in life, to gain essential qualifications and in an increasingly competitive job market employers are looking for skilled personnel. They tell us they wish they’d done it when they were younger.
At School it is generally AS/A2 levels that are offered in comparison to vocational courses. AS/A2 Levels are designed to give well-rounded skills and knowledge, and are generally preferred by students who wish to keep their options open. The College delivers a small number of AS/A2 Level courses, such as Psychology and Law, which can be accessed by school pupils via the ‘Option T’ (Twilight) scheme – it’s a partnership scheme between the comprehensive schools and the College.
College is a popular option for students who feel they have outgrown school or would benefit from undertaking a hands-on, vocational course. Vocational qualifications are an excellent choice for students who have a keen interest in a subject area or wish to pursue a career in a particular sector. They are designed in collaboration with industry, so that students are equipped with the skills and knowledge that employers are looking for. We offer over 70 vocational courses that offer a mix of theory and practice, and also include an element of work experience or hands-on practice.
In April 2009, Bridgend College welcomed a team of 30 Estyn Inspectors to our campuses to assess eight learning areas, as well as the seven key questions within the common inspection framework.
75% of our learning areas received a Grade 1 and 100% received a Grade 1 or a Grade 2 – we are one of only four Further Education Colleges in Wales to have achieved this. The College was awarded 10 x Grade 1s and 5 x Grade 2’s, one of the highest set of grades ever awarded to a Further Education College in Wales (or England).
In 2011, Bridgend College once again celebrated phenomenal success with 134 students achieving triple distinction profiles in their National Diploma programme, equalling 36O UCAS points [the equivalent of 3 A-levels at grade ‘A’].
This exceeds the totals of 2010 and 2009 (106 and 89 respectively) and equates to over 39% of all of our National Diploma students achieving these outstanding results.
Any student who has not already achieved a Grade C minimum in GCSE Mathematics or GCSE English is encouraged to join a class to achieve this qualification.
Opportunities exist for students to join these courses either on an evening or a Wednesday afternoon or a Friday morning. Some vocational departments offer exclusive courses in either GCSE English Language or Mathematics.
Students will be required to attend one 3 hour session per week for 30 weeks. Evening classes run from 6-9pm, afternoon classes from 1-4 pm and morning classes on either 9-12 noon or 10-1pm.
Stage 1: Application Process
It’s important that the Application Form is completed in full so that we can be sure to give your child all of the support needed, with perhaps Dyslexia or medical issues for example. If required, we will arrange for your son or daughter to meet our Additional Needs Support Officer, who will make provisions for any support requirements before the start of term. It is also helpful to know if your son or daughter is already getting support and to know who this help is from e.g. social worker or speech therapist.
Completed Application Forms are to be returned to Bridgend Campus as soon as possible. We will acknowledge the application by letter and arrange an interview for your son or daughter with a College Tutor.
Courses fill up fast, so apply early to avoid disappointment!
Stage 2: College Interview
Held at the campus where your son or daughter will attend your course, all interviews are informal and simply an opportunity for us to get to know them better. They maybe required to, undertake a practical test or audition for some courses, however they will be informed of this in their interview invite letter. Usually, they will be advised at the end of the interview if they have been offered a place; if not they will be notified by post within ten working days.
Stage 3: Enrolment
All students must complete the on-line enrolment process at the beginning of term. They will officially become a student at Bridgend College only when this process has been completed.
No tuition fees are payable by full-time further education students who are UK/European Union residents. They may also enrol on our part-time courses, free of charge.
Our Student Services Team are located on both our Bridgend and Pencoed Campus. The team consists of staff who can provide course advice and information regarding student transport, financial assistance, student meal subsidiaries, progression opportunities such as employment, voluntary work or Higher Education, welfare and counselling sessions.
All Student Services staff have a nationally recognised qualification in Advice and Guidance and are available to assist at the enquiry and application stages, during your course and also offer a follow-up service on completion of the students studies.
There is a wide range of financial support available to full-time, further education students.
The College understands that some students may have personal difficulties that they would like to discuss with specially trained staff, our Student Support and Child Protection Officers are able to offer a range of services to all students on all campuses.
If your son or daughter is ill, we ask you to telephone the College on the first day of absence, with the explanation of the absence.
We have Careers Wales advisors based at our Bridgend Campus and Pencoed Campus.
If your son or daughter has a disability or additional learning requirement, specialist support is available to ensure all students are able to realise their full learning potential at Bridgend College.
We also have a large team of Classroom Support Workers who provide group and one-to-one support for our students.
On Wednesday afternoons they will also have the opportunity to join the Student Electives programme, this is designed to broaden their experiences and develop new skills, allowing them to progress into careers or into Higher Education, in the same way as A Level students.
If you have a query, please contact Student Services:
Bridgend: T: 01656 302302, E: email@example.com
Pencoed: T: 01656 302600, E: firstname.lastname@example.org
Maesteg: T: 01656 730569, E: email@example.com
They will answer your question if they can or forward you to the relevant department or member of staff.