Torfaen Learning Zone has been highly anticipated for quite some time, and after a difficult year in the midst of a global pandemic that’s affected us all, Coleg Gwent is excited to officially open their brand-new state-of-the-art campus in the heart of Cwmbran. After many months of teaching and learning remotely, the college is thrilled to welcome learners and staff through its doors and mark the occasion with a small opening ceremony.
The new campus offers a wide range of courses for all types of learners in Torfaen, with industry-standard facilities at one of Wales’ top performing colleges. The Learning Zone will provide learners with fantastic opportunities for post-16 education in the Torfaen region. Coleg Gwent’s Blaenau Gwent Learning Zone in Ebbw Vale has already revolutionised outcomes for learners in that area, and they look forward to seeing the same success at Torfaen Learning Zone.
As part of the Welsh Government 21st Century Schools and Colleges programme, Torfaen Learning Zone is managed and run by Coleg Gwent in partnership with Torfaen County Borough Council. It replaces three English medium school sixth forms in the borough and will be home to all A Level education in Torfaen. It will also offer the Welsh Baccalaureate and a range of complementary level 2 and 3 qualifications, bringing further education services together under one roof for Torfaen.
Despite the uncertainty of COVID-19, the build of the new campus made good progress and has come a long way since the original announcement made to all staff, learners and the wider community back in June 2018.
Principal Guy Lacey said “we are all tremendously excited in the College about the opening of the new Torfaen Learning Zone in January. It will be an amazing place to learn and study and we can’t wait to see our students using it. It has been a long process to get here – the pandemic may have delayed things, but it hasn’t stopped us from getting to the goal of having an amazing new College for all the young people and adult learners of Torfaen.”
Following a similar model to the Blaenau Gwent Learning Zone in Ebbw Vale, the building will be fully accessible and will include specialist facilities for pupils with Additional Learning Needs (ALN). The campus is bright, light and airy with modern amenities and facilities – an ideal environment for learning and inspiring young minds. The Learning Zone’s prime location next to the Morrisons store in the town centre is also easily accessible for learners and staff, with excellent links to public transport and local facilities.
Leader of Torfaen Council, Councillor Anthony Hunt said: ‘Torfaen Learning Zone will help secure a more sustainable way of delivering post 16 education in Torfaen. Our motivation as always is our learners, and making sure they will be able to access the broadest possible curriculum and quality of provision into the future.’