Local students and their parents have been left bitterly disappointed after a school pulled a qualification they were working on, two thirds into the course.

Year 11 students on the Work Skills level 2 BTEC at Ysgol Gyfun Emlyn were told last month that the school was pulling them out of the course after 18 months of hard work.

The school has since said that the pupils are being offered an equivalent alternative course. However, parent Jenny Underwood said she was outraged at the lack of communication from the school. Her son, Iestyn, initially found out that he would not get the BTEC qualification from a supply teacher.

She said that Iestyn’s original teacher, who was great, left in July last year and since then the course has been taught by supply teachers.

Ysgol Gyfun Emlyn offered the Work Skills BTEC alongside GCSE qualifications. The course covers the the knowledge, understanding and skills pupils need for career progression or further study.

After months of being taught by supply teachers Ms Underwood says that one of them told the six students in Iestyn’s class that ‘he would be fuming if he was them, as they weren’t going to get their qualification’.

More than a week later, parents were sent an email from the school’s assistant headteacher saying: “Due to staffing issues in the autumn term it has become apparent that it will be impossible for the BTEC Work Skills course to be completed in the time allocated”.

The email, seen by the Tivyside Advertiser, went onto say: “We are very sorry that matters beyond our control have placed us in this situation. Unfortunately the volume of work needing to be completed and the time left make it impossible to expect learners to be successful.”

The school has since said that that email was sent out in error. However, it confirmed that the Work Skills course would not be completed.

An alternative equivalent course is being offered with the work covered in the Work Skills course used for this course.

However, Ms Underwood said that it is unclear how the new course actually ties in with the Work Skills BTEC and that there was little communication from the school about the new offer.

She said that last month was the first time that any concerns with the amount of work completed had been raised by the school. She added that her son’s Work Skills app shows that he has very little work to complete in order to finish the course.

“I am actually furious that they are depriving these kids of a qualification that they have worked towards since the start of Year 10, so for 18 months,” she said.

“Any concerns the school have had with the children’s work has never been brought up with me.”

“Even if only one child was going to pass, then the course should have carried on. No concerns have been raised by the school regarding any part of the course or the children.

She added: “This is a ridiculous situation and no one is giving it a second thought. As if it’s fine to write off a child’s qualification after 18 months of working towards it.

“It’s an absolute joke they can take a qualification away from these kids due to their inability to run a school properly.”