Message to families – Monday 13 March


Dear Parent / Carer

I hope you had a lovely weekend. There is quite a lot to report on here, so please take the time to read all points.

We are Ofsted Outstanding

We are proud to announce that we have been graded Outstanding across all areas following our Ofsted inspection in January. Thank you for your continued support and for those of you who completed the Ofsted surveys as part of the inspection. 

The report is still yet to be published on the Ofsted website, but here is a copy of the report.

You will see from the report that Ofsted were extremely impressed by our provision. I have pulled out a couple of key quotes from the inspectors:

“From the moment learners arrive on the expansive college grounds, they are greeted by kind and caring staff who welcome them each day.”

“Learners benefit from a highly personalised and ambitious curriculum and make excellent progress to achieve their learning goals.”

The report really does show what a whole team effort this has been and I feel captures that special Portland ethos.


Ofsted Celebration Event

I am inviting all staff, learners and citizens to join us at a celebration event on Monday 27th March from 1.30-3pm in the Quad.

There will be free ice-cream and soft drinks and entertainment from a Performing Arts learner.

As this falls within normal college time for most, staff will ensure learners and citizens are able to attend if they wish.  For young people who are not timetabled to be on campus at this time, they are of course very welcome to attend.  If you plan to bring your young person in, please let the events team know at

Courage Awards – Tuesday 14th March

We’re proud to be hosting the annual Mansfield Rotary Courage Awards again this year. 

This large community event means that the Woodlands will be out of action for learner / citizen breaktimes. Breaks and lunchtime refreshments will be in Newstart Theatre and Exhibition Room on the afternoon of 13th March and all day on 14th March.  Lunch menus are here and it would be helpful if you could explain this change to your young person.

Royal Visit

This is a reminder that His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh will be visiting campus on Wednesday 15th March as part of a two-day tour of the county visiting providers of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme.

Please remember:

  • We will have several media outlets on campus throughout the visit who will be filming and photographing the event. Staff have been briefed to ensure that learners and citizens not directly involved in the event are not in the line of cameras at any point to ensure we comply with visual consent records. If any learner, citizen or staff member appears on footage, there is nothing we can do to retract it.
  • The Coffee Shop will be closed to learners, staff, citizens and all customers until 12pm on the day.
  • We will close the campus to public access during the visit. Please remind your young person to wear their Portland lanyard.
  • We have to follow strict protocol around publicising the event, please do not publish anything about the event on social media or other channels. You are very welcome to share our official published content on social media, which will go through the formal approval process after the event.
  • We are not permitted to take any photos of any part of the visit on mobiles or other devices, please ensure your young person is aware of this.
  • Staff, learners and citizens not directly involved in the visit are welcome to line the driveway as His Royal Highness departs if they wish. Staff will accompany learners and citizens that want to wave goodbye.

Here is a social script to share with your young person to help them understand the nature of the visit.

Catering Survey

The Catering Team do a fantastic job of catering for our staff, learners and citizens and they are keen to continue improving their service.

Please take a few moments to give your and your young person’s feedback through this survey.

Mark Dale
Principal and CEO