Havant and South Downs College (Alton Site)

What is this page?

We are Locrating.com, a schools information website. This page is one of our school directory pages. This is not the website of Havant and South Downs College (Alton Site).

What is Locrating?

Locrating is the UK's most popular and trusted school guide; it allows you to view inspection reports, admissions data, exam results, catchment areas, league tables, school reviews, neighbourhood information, carry out school comparisons and much more. Below is some useful summary information regarding Havant and South Downs College (Alton Site).

To see all our data you need to click the blue button at the bottom of this page to view Havant and South Downs College (Alton Site) on our interactive map.

About Havant and South Downs College (Alton Site)

Name Havant and South Downs College (Alton Site)
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Mr Mike Gaston
Address Old Odiham Road, Alton, Hampshire, GU34 2LX
Phone Number 01420 592200
Phase Further Education
Type Further education
Age Range 16-99
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils Unknown
Local Authority Hampshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

Information about this provider

Havant and South Downs College (HSDC) is a general further education college formed from the merger of three colleges. South Downs College and Havant College merged in 2017 to form Havant and South Downs College, with Alton College joining the group in 2019.

The college has now been rebranded as HSDC. There are three main campuses, all in Hampshire.

At the time of the inspection, there were 6,580 learners studying at HSDC.

Leaders offer education programmes in all subject areas, from entry level to level 6. Around 4,900 students study education programmes for young people, with over two-thirds studying at level 3. Around 1,400 adult students currently study at HSDC,... with just under two-thirds studying at level 2.

Almost all of the 330 apprentices study on apprenticeship standards. There are 144 students in receipt of high needs funding. Leaders and managers work with four subcontractors who teach around 300 of their adult students.

What is it like to be a learner with this provider?

Students and apprentices enjoy their learning at college, and this shows in their positive approach to their studies. They take ownership of their learning, work hard and improve their confidence. Students and apprentices benefit from teachers who plan learning well, which enables them to quickly develop new knowledge and skills.

Students and apprentices are respectful to their peers and teachers. They behave well in the classroom and around the college. They are keen to learn, and they support each other well.

Most work and study sensibly both in and out of the college. For example, sports students work with professional coaches to coach primary school students. They develop maturity, sensitivity and confidence as a result of working with very young children.

Students with high needs develop knowledge and skills which prepare them well for employment or further study. They improve their communication skills, learn how to express their opinions sensibly and become more confident when working with others. This helps them work more independently on their projects.

Students with high needs achieve as well as other students at the college.

Most apprentices develop new knowledge and skills that help them make good progress. For example, management apprentices use their new knowledge to improve their own team performance at work.

Many apprentices develop the confidence to ask questions and solve problems themselves. A few apprentices take on additional responsibility at work.

Adult students benefit from flexible learning designed to fit in with their working lives.

They quickly develop the English and mathematical skills that they need to re-enter employment or move on to further studies. Those studying English for speakers of other languages improve their language skills, and this helps them at work. Most adult students achieve their qualifications and move on to the next level of education or into employment.

Most students and apprentices at the college know what they need to do to prepare for their future careers and next steps. Students receive useful careers advice from well-trained specialist careers advisers and knowledgeable subject teachers.

Students and apprentices feel safe and know who to speak to if they have concerns.

They trust college staff to deal with concerns quickly and effectively. Students understand how to keep themselves safe from risk, both in and out of the classroom.

What does the provider do well and what does it need to do better?

Leaders and managers have a clear rationale for the courses they offer.

They have developed strong links with the local community that help them to understand local priorities. This has enabled leaders to introduce new courses such as digital journalism and specialist construction. As a result, courses meet local job market needs and increase employment opportunities for students.

Governance at the college is strong. Board members have a range of skills and experience that enable them to challenge leaders effectively. Governors understand the strengths and weaknesses of the college.

They use detailed reports from senior staff to challenge leaders and make improvements for students and apprentices. For example, as a result of a more relentless focus on the quality of the apprenticeship programme, the number of apprentices achieving merit and distinction at end-point assessments has vastly improved.

Leaders and managers make good use of local information from employers and advisory boards to understand regional priorities.

They use this information effectively to design a purposeful curriculum for students on study programmes that provide them with the technical and employability skills they need for the future. For example, in media and communication teachers benefit from professional industry placements to update their own subject knowledge, and this ensures that the teaching is relevant and meets current industry standards.

Leaders and managers have designed a curriculum that is ambitious and challenges adults to make rapid progress in the subjects they study.

Staff use information about adults' starting points effectively to make sure they are on the right course and at the right level. Adult students are motivated, committed to their course and clear about what they need to do to move in to work or university. Teachers support students' ambitions and prepare them effectively for their next steps.

They help students gain the skills they need to advance to careers in areas such as paramedic science, nutrition or radiology.

Leaders and managers select subcontractors carefully and work closely with them to develop courses to meet the needs of adult students and employers. For example, adults work with one subcontractor to learn the skills they need to gain employment in the rail sector.

Those who complete the course benefit from guaranteed employment in a track safety job on the railway.

Leaders and managers work well with employers to design the curriculum for apprentices. Engineering apprentices work on technical projects at college that they use at work.

For example, they design and build robotic hands that can recover objects underwater. Staff work closely with a national hospitality employer to design the menus that catering apprentices create. Consequently, apprentices develop the knowledge and skills they need to work successfully and progress rapidly in their jobs.

Well-qualified teachers use their high levels of vocational experience to help students and apprentices quickly develop new knowledge and skills. Leaders and managers make sure staff continue to develop their teaching skills through useful training sessions. Managers identify weaknesses in classroom practice effectively.

Staff talk enthusiastically about the support they get to improve their teaching. They use useful feedback from learning coaches and practical resources to experiment with new techniques in the classroom and to develop their teaching further.

Most teachers plan lessons skilfully and organise learning logically.

They make sure that students and apprentices understand key concepts before moving on to more complex topics. For example, in science practical sessions students test out the theories they have already learned. Adult students on counselling courses learn about the symptoms of anxiety and stress before moving on to learn about phobias.

Teachers develop useful resources to help students learn. Students benefit from a wealth of shared online resources. They use these resources confidently to develop their own revision notes.

This helps them prepare well for examinations. Staff use assistive technology skilfully to support students with high needs. For example, visually impaired students use technology to support them with reading books out loud to children in a primary school.

Most teachers use assessment effectively to identify and improve gaps in students' and apprentices' knowledge. A few teachers do not question students carefully to check that they understand what they have learned. As a result, they are not clear if students know what they need to do to improve their work and move on to the next part of their learning.

Most teachers provide students and apprentices with feedback that helps them improve their work. The vast majority of students and apprentices understand what they need to do to improve. Most produce work of a high standard.

Students studying media and games development, sport, chemistry, catering and engineering produce work of a very high standard and develop strong technical skills.

Teachers and support staff know their students and apprentices well. Most check carefully students' and apprentices' progress with learning.

They identify quickly those who fall behind and help them get back on track. As a result, most students and apprentices, including those with high needs and special educational needs and disabilities, learn new topics quickly. A few learning assistants give their students too much support, which means these students do not develop some of the independent study skills they need.

Teachers help most students and apprentices improve their English and mathematics skills. Students studying business develop their mathematical skills by researching student finance options and future salaries. Students studying health and social care start each lesson with a short activity that helps them improve their spelling and technical language.

A few teachers do not routinely correct students' spelling and grammatical errors, which means they continue to make similar mistakes.

Leaders and managers have designed a wide range of valuable opportunities to help students and apprentices to develop skills that complement their studies. Students who want to proceed to higher education benefit from visits to universities, external speakers, tutorial support groups and information evenings.

These activities help most students secure places at the universities of their choice. Students and apprentices improve their confidence by participating in local and national competitions. Catering and sports students excel in prestigious national skills competitions.

Students learn about topics such as healthy eating and mental well-being through a well-structured tutorial programme. As leaders and managers do not record students' participation in all of the activities students can take part in, they are unable to judge fully the impact of these activities.

Most students undertake useful work experience or work-related activities which prepare them well for their next steps and future employment.

For example, sports journalism students benefit from work placements at employers that include newspaper, television production and marketing companies. Students learn about professional writing, content design and editing, along with developing important skills such as timekeeping and working professionally with others.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders make sure that staff and students feel safe and know how to raise concerns, both at the college and in the workplace. Leaders recruit staff safely. They make sure that staff understand their safeguarding responsibilities.

Well-trained safeguarding staff record safeguarding concerns in detail. They use their close relationships with external organisations to support students and apprentices who make safeguarding disclosures. Leaders understand the local risks for students and apprentices.

Although students learn about these risks in college, they struggle to recall some of the specific risks in the areas in which they live and work.

What does the provider need to do to improve?

Leaders and managers should review the actions they have taken in order to ensure that students and apprentices understand local threats, and they should make sure that they help students and apprentices improve their knowledge of risks in their own communities and workplaces. .

Leaders and managers should continue to improve the classroom skills of weaker teachers so that all students and apprentices benefit from a high-quality education. . Leaders and managers should improve their tracking of students' participation in activities outside their course requirements in order to measure in more detail the impact these activities have.

Also at this postcode
Little Faces Nursery CM Sports Holiday Camp Havant and South Downs College

  Compare to
nearby schools