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College acknowledged as leader across Staffordshire for apprenticeships

A Staffordshire college has been acknowledged as the highest performing college in the county for apprenticeships.


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Recently published data from the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) has shown Newcastle and Stafford Colleges Group (NSCG) has maintained its position as the highest performing College in Staffordshire and one of the top performing further education colleges in England for apprenticeships.

The results were highlighted in the latest National Apprenticeship Achievement Rate Tables, released by the Department for Education (DfE) on March 21, and are based on the 2022-2023 academic year.

Achievement rates are a measure of how many students completed and passed the apprenticeship they studied.

NSCG’s overall achievement rate for apprenticeships during the last academic year was 68 per cent against a national average of 54.3 per cent, placing the Group in the top spot in the West Midlands region and in the top 10 per cent of Colleges nationally.

In addition, retention rates score higher than all local competitors, reflective of the Group reputation for providing outstanding academic and pastoral support throughout the apprenticeship journey.

Just a few months earlier, the DfE announced Newcastle and Stafford Colleges Group as the West Midlands only ‘Expert Apprenticeship Provider’, one of only five further education colleges nationally to achieve this status.

The figures show how NCSG ranks regionally and nationally

Expert status was awarded after the College demonstrated excellence across a strict range of criteria including learner achievement data, financial health and exceptional employer feedback.

Craig Hodgson, principal and chief executive of Newcastle and Stafford Colleges Group, said: “I am pleased once again, to see outcomes for our apprentices exceeding national benchmarks.

"I believe they speak volumes for the quality of provision we offer at NSCG and are testament to our ethos of being ‘committed to excellence’.

"Across both campuses, we have a talented and dedicated Work Based Learning Team who strive to deliver the very best outcomes for apprentices, whatever their starting point, so I would like to extend my personal thanks to everyone who has contributed to these fantastic results.”

To find out more about studying an apprenticeship at NSCG, go to

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