College scraps course after two weeks

26/9/12- Monty Morris, Conor O'Brien and Nathan Daley from St Leonards.   Sussex Coast College has closed their course due to staff shortages.
26/9/12- Monty Morris, Conor O'Brien and Nathan Daley from St Leonards. Sussex Coast College has closed their course due to staff shortages.

A CLASS of 18 students was left in limbo after their college course was scrapped after just two weeks.

The students were stunned after being handed letters when they arrived at Sussex Coast College in Hastings on Tuesday morning.

Signed by deputy principal April Carrol, the letter explained their Events Management NVQ level three diploma had been cancelled.

The letter stated the college was forced to make the decision due to the ‘unavailability of appropriately qualified and experienced teaching staff’.

Two teachers that started the course were not able to continue in their roles. The course only started on September 10.

It is the latest setback to hit the college following a damning Ofsted report last year and the resignation of former principal Janak Patel.

Ofsted inspectors are expected to return in the near future giving just two days notice.

Conor O’Brien, 17, of Maze Hill, St Leonards said he was stunned by the decision.

“We are all still in a state of shock,” he said, “It’s totally unfair. They should not have run it in the first place if they could not guarantee its completion.

“There was no structure to the course at all.

“We put £50 of our own money in as a group to run a pizza and smoothie bar on campus as part of our course.

“We are unable to enrol anywhere else now until the next year so a lot of us don’t know what we are going to do.”

Nathan Daly, 18, who lives in Amanda Close, Bexhill, said: “It has come as a massive shock.

“I gave up an apprenticeship in accountancy last November to do this course.

“I really wanted to do events management. To think of all the money I have wasted on this course - it is really disappointing. I don’t know what I am going to do now.”

Monty Morris, 16, of Starrs Mead, Battle, said: “This was my first course after leaving Claverham College.

“I think it’s disgusting how they can put it in the prospectus and then not run it.

“It’s left us in complete limbo.”

College spokesman Naomi Robinson said: “Due to the sudden and unplanned departure of two teaching staff, Sussex Coast College has been forced to cancel the Events Management Course.

“However, the principal Clive Cooke, met with the students on Thursday. While the course remains closed, he has confirmed that every effort is being made to identify replacement lecturers.

“The college does not take the decision to cancel any course lightly and understands that the cancellation is upsetting for students who had enrolled on the course.

“Everything possible is being done to support the students in finding ways forward with their studies, including the offer of alternative courses where appropriate.

“A number of students have already been successfully allocated places on other courses.”