For a quarter of a century, Ruskin Mill Educational Trust has pioneered a unique, holistic and student-centred approach to the education and care of young people who fall between the cracks of mainstream provision.

In 1984 Aonghus Gordon discovered that when such students work with craftspeople in natural environments on real-life, purposeful tasks, their personal, emotional and social skills, behaviour and health improve dramatically. Though the Trust is now active throughout England, with colleges in Gloucestershire, the West Midlands and Sheffield, this simple but provocative observation remains the heart of its mission.

Centred on a former Royal Doulton crystal glass factory, Glasshouse opened in Stourbridge in the West Midlands, in the first year of the Millennium. Based in a converted crystal glass factory in the glass making district of Stourbridge, the College is situated on the edge of the Staffordshire and Worcestershire countryside yet within easy reach of Birmingham’s cultural centre.

The industrial heritage of the Black Country is being actively promoted and Glasshouse College, working in collaboration with the Ruskin Glass Centre, has established a range of high quality craft workshops, a shop and cafe. Each student follows the three-year Ruskin Mill Orientation Course, a bespoke vocational timetable designed around his or her particular needs, talents and aspirations. For third years, this will probably incorporate work experience and/or study at local mainstream colleges, in preparation for life after college.

Residential provision is likewise tailored to individual needs and abilities, but typically evolves from a family-based model in the first year to more independent arrangements in the third. Both educational and residential provision are supported by a wide range of specialists, from GPs and psychotherapists to gardeners and technicians.

If you are interested in Glasshouse College and would like to visit, our the next Open Day takes place on Thursday 14th October from 2.00 to 4.00pm.

Booking a place for an Open Day is essential so please contact Admissions Co-ordinator for Glasshouse College on 01384 399400 or by e-mail

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