SCORES of students have been left in the lurch after a college announced it was no longer offering new A-level courses.

Bournemouth and Poole College will not be taking on any new A-level students in September.

Of the 79 students currently in the first year of their A-levels, 26 are being forced to change courses or find another college or sixth form.

Prospective students who applied to attend the college next year must now find somewhere else or change to a non-A-level programme.

Concerned parents and students contacted the Daily Echo after being sent an email out of the blue from the college.

One parent said stopping courses midway through people’s studies should not be allowed. A would-be A-level student said it was “ridiculous” to axe courses after offering places .

A statement from Bournemouth and Poole College said: “After careful consideration, the college has decided not to offer A-level courses to new applicants from the 2020/2021 academic year.

“The College constantly reviews its academic offer to ensure the best fit with demand, local conditions and employer need.

“As such, the decision has been taken to focus on the core offer of 16-18 technical and professional provision and apprenticeships, as well as our expanding adult professional and skills programmes.

“This decision was recently made by the governing body of the College, and is not related to the current pandemic or any other external factors.

“Nearly all current A-level students who are partway through their two-year courses will continue their studies through to July 2021 and so will be unaffected. The small number of students who are not able to continue their course will be assisted to secure an alternative provider or course.”

First-year A-level students studying the following subjects now face seeking an alternative provider or starting from scratch on new courses: history, geography, photography, politics, maths, chemistry, biology and physics.

The remaining students on law, English, psychology, criminology, business, sociology, media and finance are able to complete their A-levels at the college.

The college statement added: “Substantial local sixth-form provision has been a factor in this decision as there are more than 15 other institutions within a 10 mile radius of the College currently offering A-level provision.

“The College will continue to innovate and adjust its provision, for example by introducing a new Level 3 in applied criminology programme comprising of psychology, criminology and law – this will enable progression to university in the same way as A-levels.

“There will continue to be a strong focus on practical skills training, apprenticeships, diplomas, professional qualifications and higher education.”