Read more: Newhaven MP says college 'could stay open'

A COLLEGE has announced it will close just days before its first Ofsted inspection is published.

The University Technical College in Newhaven opened in September 2015 and has just 128 pupils on roll, well below its capacity of 600.

It was inspected by Ofsted last month with the report due to be released on Wednesday.

Students due to join the UTC in September will now be offered places in alternative schools.

Existing pupils will be able to stay and finish their courses.

A spokesman for the college said: “The UTC has not been able to recruit enough students to become financially stable and to deliver fully on its educational vision.

“The governors have decided that the best way forward is to propose termination of its contract with the Department for Education.

“The UTC was inspected by Ofsted last month and the report is due to be published later this week.

“This has been a very difficult and hugely disappointing decision for the governors to make.

“We recognise that this announcement will cause concern to students, staff and parents.

“Our primary concern is the welfare and education of students currently attending the UTC and those who have applied to join from September, and we have taken this decision at the earliest opportunity in the light of the upcoming summer break.

Read more: Newhaven MP says college 'could stay open'

“We are absolutely committed to ensuring that support is available to current and prospective students following this announcement and through to August 31 2019.”

“We are already in discussions with the relevant local authorities to secure alternative places for the students who had accepted an offer to join us in September.

“We are working closely with parents, students, schools and the local authorities to do all we can to assist this.

“The college will remain open and fully committed to ensuring our current year 10 and 12 students successfully complete their courses in July 2019.

We also recognise that this decision will cause concern for members of our staff team at the UTC.

“The management team are having discussions with both teaching and support staff and are encouraging staff to contact their professional bodies and trades unions for advice and support.

“UTC@harbourside is working closely with and is being supported by the DfE and the Baker Dearing Educational Trust, the organisation that helps to set up UTCs, through this difficult period.

“The governors are deeply disappointed to announce the proposed closure of UTC@harbourside and our hope is that a more successful future for the Harbourside building can be secured which will promote the very best educational opportunities for young people in the area and support the regeneration of Newhaven.”

Read more: Newhaven MP says college 'could stay open'