NEW statistics have named a college as the best joint college in the country to study A Levels, based on the progress students make during their studies.

The year on year Department for Education figures show the college in Nelson and Colne College has jumped from being third in the country to equal first for the value added to the grades of students.

Progress scores are calculated by comparing students predicted A Level grades based on their GCSE results against their A Level achievements when they leave college.

College vice-principal Paul Britton said: “The department for education school performance tables confirm just what a fantastic set of results teaching staff at NCC supported our A Level students to achieve.

“We’re now the joint top performing college in the country for A Level progress and our progress score of +0.39 means that students achieved almost half a grade better on average across their subjects with us than they would have done at most other schools or colleges in the country.”

In 2016/17, the college had a 99.7per cent pass rate at A Level and 28 students achieved at least three A* or A grades, a recorder number for the school.

Meanwhile, one in five leavers progressed on to study at Russell Group universities.

One example of progress made comes from former West Craven High School pupil Oliver Robertson.

Former West Craven High School student Oliver arrived at NCC having achieved no A* grades at GCSE level, but walked away from college with three A* grades in Chemistry, Maths and Physics.

He is now studying Physics at the University of Manchester.

News of the exceptional progress scores comes at the same time as NCC students Alexandra Mitchell-Males, 18, Alex Abrahams, 18, and Liam Cocker,17, have all received conditional offers from the University of Oxford.

Former Ss John Fisher and Thomas More RC High School student Liam is studying A Level Biology, Chemistry and English Literature at NCC and has a conditional offer to study Biological Sciences at Jesus College.

He said: “The offer feels great but a bit surreal. I’ve worked really hard for it and I’m really pleased I have a potential place.

“I definitely made the right choice in coming to NCC.”

Vice principal Mr Britton said: “I’m delighted to hear that we have three Oxbridge candidates this year, and while they are conditional offers, it highlights what is possible through studying at NCC.

“Raising the aspirations of students and the wider community is a core objective of the college and our career college ethos is focused on supporting and inspiring students’ future progression and employment opportunities.”