Monday 18th March 2019
We are very pleased to be able to announce that the ESFA have now approved, by exception, that Dv8 can continue to be funded to offer 16-18 Study Programmes from our centres in Brighton and Bexhill.
This also immediately lifts the temporary suspension of in-year recruitment to our programmes, allowing Dv8 to offer our second round of Traineeships as planned after the Easter Break.
This decision was made after much scrutiny by the ESFA local and national teams, and was ultimately approved by Senior Management within the ESFA .
We would like to thank the ESFA teams for their decision, which we recognise is exceptional, with Dv8 being one of only a very few providers to be allowed to continue to be funded following an Inadequate Ofsted grading.
The decision was heavily influenced by the extraordinary public support that we received from parents, young people, employers, Local Authorities, partner organisations, colleges, and a number of MPs following our recent public campaign. The online petition to save Dv8 (https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/save-dv8-sussex-from-possible-closure) received nearly 3000 signatures and we received hundreds of messages of support, which were all forwarded on to the ESFA.
The supporting statements all told a common story of Dv8 providing a unique service locally, where young people can come and feel valued, feel safe, achieve and progress into meaningful lives. Many messages highlighted the unique nature of Dv8’s offer locally and that young people who succeed with us, would not necessarily engage or be successful elsewhere if we were not to continue.
This obviously comes as a huge relief to everyone at Dv8 and we are immensely grateful for the support that we received from within our local communities, which did so much to ensure that we can continue to offer our provision in Brighton and Bexhill. We cannot thank you enough.
Since our Ofsted inspection in November, we have been working closely with the Local Authorities in Brighton and Hove and East Sussex, who have now joined our expanded Advisory Board, to design and implement a clear plan for improvement, addressing all areas identified in the inspection report. We have already made significant progress in many areas and expect an Ofsted monitoring visit imminently, which we hope will recognise this in their published report.
We would like to thank everybody who signed the petition and wrote in letters of support to the ESFA and in particular, the teams at the Local Authorities and our local MPs in Brighton and Bexhill who supported our representations to the ESFA. We would like to also thank our entire staff team, our students and parents at Dv8, whose commitment and support throughout this period has been essential and they have all been brilliant throughout.
We will be contacting all applicants for courses starting in September 2019 to begin the interview and enrolment process as soon as possible. We will of course be accepting new applications as of today.
Having come through this process, we now feel a newfound connection with our communities. Our mission and purpose have become clearer than ever and the impact we have had on the lives of young people and families has been made more evident than ever before. We will now push forward and become an even better organisation for it.
We will continue to “empower creative thinkers”, encouraging our young people to be ambitious, think creatively and take risks to solve problems, work together to achieve their goals, to learn from experiences, both good and bad, as a force for positive change.
For any further information on our programmes for 2019/20 or to apply to join a Dv8 course, please see www.dv8sussex.com or call 01273 550 432 to speak to one of our team.
We very much look forward to welcoming our next group of students to Dv8 and to completing this academic year successfully, continuing to support young people to be successful in work and life.
Managing Director, Dv8 Sussex