There are many benefits to business by getting involved and supporting local colleges and their students. Read below to find out more.

Aquinas College

Aquinas College is a Catholic sixth form providing education for young adults, who wish to share in the Christian environment which is characterised by the individual care, guidance and support offered as well as by the highest standards of academic work.

We were established in 1980, on the site of St Michael’s Secondary School, just off the main A6.  In May 2010 we moved into a large,  new building, on the same site with fantastic modern facilities.  Student’s come from a number of different schools in the Stockport, Cheshire, Tameside and Manchester areas.  Since league tables were introduced Aquinas College has been consistently ranked in the top 20. Unlike most other colleges featured in this list Aquinas is not academically selective. Our basic aim is to care for students and provide an excellent learning environment so it is not a surprise that we receive good examination results.

Approximately 70% of our students progress to University but the number of students, interested in apprenticeships, ideally at Advanced or Higher level is growing. The most popular Universities our students accept places at are the Universities of Manchester, Sheffield, Salford and Leeds, Manchester Metropolitan University, Sheffield Hallam and Leeds Beckett.

Employer engagement can benefit students in a number of ways. The information and insights that they can gain can enrich their wider academic learning. Understanding the relevance of knowledge learnt in the classroom can be used in the work place will improve motivation to study and lead to higher achievement. The development of the softer skills and business acumen has the potential to enhance the employability of students especially if they become aware of the current developments in a sector they are interested in. Students who do not have parental support, are young careers or do not have the business contacts are disadvantaged so having the opportunity to connect with businesses will be invaluable to them.

Student numbers
The college has approximately 2000, 16-19 year old students enrolled on full time courses.

Educational focus
We offer a large curriculum with over 50 different subjects, including ‘A’ levels, BTEC’s and GCSE’s. Most students take three/four ‘A’ levels or a mixture of ‘A’ levels and a BTEC qualification. A small number of students take level 2 courses which are primarily GCSE’s in English and maths alongside a business, IT or Financial Studies qualification.

Address and directions
Nangreave Rd,

Click to view in google maps

Carol Mayall –
Head of Career Service
Email –
Telephone – 0161 483 3237

Famous Ex-students
Dominic Monaghan
Meriadoc Brandybuck – Lord of the Rings

Hannah Whelan
British Artistic Gymnast – Commonwealth Team Gold 2014.

Chelsea Norris
Key 103 DJ

Eric Ham
British Junior Judo Champion.

Matt Walker MBE
Paralympic swimmer –5 medals Beijing 2008 (11 medals in total)

Quirky fact
St Thomas Aquinas was a Catholic priest, a teacher and the Catholic Churches greatest theologian and philosopher. We celebrate his birthday in January by wearing black and white and eating cake!


The Cheadle & Marple College Network

The Cheadle and Marple College Network, may be recognisable to locals the two separate colleges of The Ridge and Margaret Danyers that merged in the early 1990s, or its initial name thereafter or Ridge Danyers and later The Cheadle and Marple Sixth Form College.

Launching the College as The Cheadle and Marple College Network promotes the identity of the two separate Colleges serving communities across Stockport and Manchester, Cheshire, Derbyshire and Tameside under the Network umbrella; The Cheadle College where vocational qualifications predominate and Marple Sixth Form College where there is a wider offer of academic qualifications.

However both Colleges offer a wide and diverse range of courses including A levels, BTEC Diplomas and Apprenticeships combined with an extensive range of extra -curricular activities deemed by Ofsted to be “Good” provision in March 2014.

We pride ourselves on being inclusive where all students are treated equally and with respect and where everyone contributes to a progressive, positive learning environment and providing support toward the next stage of life whether it be University, training toward a specific career, Apprenticeship, going straight into work or becoming an entrepreneur.

The C&M College Network has for over 20 years recognised the benefits of engaging with employers. We have a dedicated team of Work Placement Co-ordinators whom develop collaborations and opportunities to work in partnership with external organisations.

The years of experience have enabled provision and collaboration to be adapted to meet the needs of students, teachers and employers – whose feedback recognises the professionalism of internal operations and as a result become repeat supporters of our engagement activity. Our ethos is not only “what employers can do for us” but also recognising “what we can do for employers”

Work placement is currently our predominant employer collaboration with over 700 work placements being organised on an individual student basis to meet their needs and enabling students to experience meaningful work. Co-ordinators operate on a sector specific basis developing strong relationships with their employers and providing a named contact.

Employer expertise has been embraced for the delivery of specific skills or to set projects and pitches to be presented, master-classes and presentations – particularly relating to career journeys and the development of generic skills such as CV writing, interview and presentation skills, trips and visits.

The variety of engagement enables the opportunity to be embedded across the curriculum, enhancing learning, improving job readiness and preparing students with the skills required to meet local employer needs.

Student numbers

Educational focus
A wide and diverse range of courses including A levels, BTEC Diplomas and Apprenticeships Access for Adults and specialist SEN provision combined with an extensive range of extra -curricular activities.

Address and directions
The Cheadle College
Cheadle Road
Cheadle Hulme

Click to view in google maps

Famous ex students

Sarah Milligan
Runner up on Alan Sugar’s The Apprentice

Sarah Storey
Paralympic gold medalist

Stockport College

Stockport College is a General Further, Higher, and Adult Education College (GFE) and the only GFE in Stockport, providing vocational and technical education since 1889.  The College specialises in vocational and technical education providing pathways for all learners from entry level to level 7 & 8.  Stockport College is a comprehensive College i.e. we do not select students but place students on the right course based on their aspiration and ambition and their prior attainment. The College offers provision for those still at school on a 14-16 schools link programme allowing learners to experience vocational and technical education.  We have a large 16-18 cohort who study a range of subjects from Hair and Beauty to motor vehicle and science.  There are a range of courses available for students aged 19+ to support professional development and to up skill to provide employment opportunities.  There is also the largest Higher Education provision outside of University in Manchester with a range of degree and HND/C courses available.  The College has first class specialist resources to support the education and training offered that cannot be matched by school or 6th form colleges.  The College has excellent relationships with local employers, many of whom were educated and trained here and we are keen to continue developing them and their employees.

Stockport College
Town Centre Campus
Wellington Road South

Click to view in google maps

Famous Ex-students

Dean Fagan
Actor – Currently playing Luke Britton on Coronation street

Mark Paterson
Emmy award winner for animated series “Archer”