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Chair Designate & Vice Chair Designate Kendal College

Kendal College seeks to appoint a Chair Designate and Vice Chair Designate to join and lead their Board in the years ahead.

  • Location: Kendal, Cumbria
  • Salary: Unremunerated with reasonable expenses paid
  • Closing date: 9 a.m. Monday 2nd September

About Kendal College

Set in the heart of a picturesque market town on the edge of the Lake District National Park, Kendal College provides a diverse range of education and training provision, including full-time and part-time courses, Higher Education, and apprenticeships.

The College is a vital part of the local community and as such, also delivers a range of adult education provision which supports individuals to upskill or retrain, helping them to get back into employment or take that next exciting career step. Alongside this, we provide opportunities which support an ever-growing and diverse range of local employers too.

Through this provision, we provide education and training to over 3,500 people, developing their talents and meeting the skills needs of employers across Cumbria, North Lancashire and the South Lakes.

“We might be a small College, but we do a lot. The breadth and depth of our offer is wide and varied. We have big ambitions.”

Kelvin Nash, Principal, Kendal College

All of this speaks to our overarching vision, which demonstrates our determination to provide outstanding education and training opportunities that are responsive to the needs of our community. Through this, our ambition is to help develop our students to deliver positive economic and sustainable environmental change both now and in the future.

All of our provision has historically been delivered across two primary campuses: our award-winning main site on Milnthorpe Road, along with our Arts and Media Campus. As demand for our provision has continued to increase, we have recognised our need to grow and expand our estate. As such, we are now at an exciting point in our organisational journey with capital build projects underway, including our expansion into our new Town Centre Campus.

Our strategic plans are underpinned by the five key priorities below, and our success against these measures will be assessed through the College’s quality processes, which will be reported to our Board throughout the year.

  • Our Quality
  • Our Reputation
  • Our Environment
  • Our Future Sustainability
  • Our People

Alongside this growth and expansion comes another chapter in our organisational journey relating to our governance. Over the next 12 months, we will see a number of departures across our Board. These include our current Chair, Jon Thedham, who comes to the end of his term of office as well as our Vice Chair, Ben Rockliffe, both of whom have served our college, our students and our local community for  many years with dedication and distinction.

Given these departures and with our strategic goals in mind, we seek to identify candidates inspired by the outcomes we deliver for our students and the ambitions for our future.

We now seek to appoint both a Chair Designate and Vice Chair Designate to join and then lead our Board in the years ahead.

Peridot Partners and Kendal College are, together, committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and our client expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. The successful candidate will be subject to an enhanced DBS check and satisfactory references before any final offer can be made.

For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

Dan Baxter | dan@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07939 994524

If you would like to know more about this role please contact Dan Baxter

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Role Description

Whilst we are excited to be on this journey of growth and development and have support from our local community, we need to be mindful of what our future looks like. We already know that our sector continues to evolve in relation to student demographics, funding and curriculum reform, and other national changes will undoubtedly create challenges and opportunities in equal measure.

The landscape across which we operate will create the need to make big and hopefully exciting decisions that will impact how we can best support our students now and into the future and are decisions that will be made not just by our senior leaders but by our Board too.

Our Board is the vehicle through which we not only create and monitor progress against our strategy. It also sets the values – listed below – which we hold ourselves to, and culture, which acts as the golden thread throughout our entire College.

  • Excellence & Ambition
  • Respect & Honesty
  • Diversity & Inclusion
  • Loyalty & Commitment
  • A Positive Environment

As a warm, welcoming and inclusive college, we want to ensure that new board members have the time to settle in, gain a clear understanding of our challenges and opportunities, and build their own relationships with board colleagues and college staff.

As such, we are seeking to appoint two new members to our Board who will have complementary skill sets and can assume the roles of Chair Designate and Vice Chair Designate respectively. We anticipate that candidates will take on the roles of Chair and Vice Chair formally from June 2025.

“New Governors are always surprised by the amount we do. They have all been very impressed with the College, and there is a great appreciation for the Senior Leadership Team and a respect for what we each do.”

John Thedham, Chair of Corporation, Kendal College

Chair Designate

Preferably, our Chair Designate will be someone with a working knowledge of – or perhaps experience within – the education sector, with experience in further education very much welcomed.

Your experience may come from being a former senior leader or manager in the FE sector, working in a leadership role within a higher education setting, or perhaps you’ve worked in the wider education sector within skills delivery, training, consultancy or with an awarding organisation. We believe this expertise would be of great value to our Board and in support of our senior leaders, who will look to navigate upcoming challenges and opportunities with distinction.

However, we are also open to people who will bring a strong ambition and drive for societal change through education and can support us in navigating through a period of change and growth with the support of our educational experts within the executive team and the wider Board.

Vice Chair Designate

As we look to not just remain a key partner for our local stakeholders, but to build on these relationships, ensuring that we are deeply embedded within our local communities, we also welcome applications from local strategic leaders to take on the role of Vice Chair Designate on our Board.

Candidates for this role could be based in a myriad of settings where your purpose is to offer support to local people, help shape our communities and work collaboratively to bring prosperity to our local region.

Expectations & Commitment

Regardless of your professional background and expertise, previous experience in the boardroom for both roles is important, and we welcome applications from candidates who will bring a positive track record for supporting senior leaders, demonstrating values-led leadership and understanding of delivering positive outcomes within a large and complex setting. We expect that the appointed candidates will be able to demonstrate a clear understanding of the principles of good governance and how these should be implemented to discharge fiduciary responsibilities in the context of a Non-Executive Board.

You will apply your specialist knowledge and expertise to contribute to strategic discussions and decision-making by working constructively as the leaders of a non-executive team whilst demonstrating an understanding that Governors must act fairly and impartially, with a commitment to the principles of safeguarding, equality and diversity.

Successful candidates will be supported throughout their period as a ‘designate’ with full induction, training and any other support required. This support will continue throughout their formal periods as Chair and Vice Chair as required.

We anticipate that once confirmed as the Chair and Vice Chair of our Board, successful candidates will need to be able to commit around 21 hours and 14 hours per month to their roles, respectively. More information regarding our planned meeting schedule is available here.

We encourage applicants from diverse backgrounds to join our Board to better reflect our communities and welcome different thinking to ensure we include all voices of our society.

For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

Dan Baxter | dan@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07939 994524

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    Thank you for your interest in this role.

    Please download the Role Description and Person Specification for Chair Designate | Vice Chair Designate and complete this Equality Monitoring Survey.

    To formally apply, please submit a CV and supporting statement (ideally maximum 2 sides of A4 each) that clearly outlines your suitability for the role against the criteria provided in the person specification, including your interest and motivation in applying for this position. Please ensure your CV and supporting statement is in a Word format.

    Please ensure that your application is emailed to response@peridotpartners.co.uk inserting “Application: Kendal College – Chair Designate or Vice Chair Designate” into the subject field. You will receive an acknowledgement on receipt of your application within 2-3 days. If you do not receive an acknowledgement, please make contact with our admin team.

    For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

    Dan Baxter | dan@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07939 994524

    As a sector-leading executive search consultancy, we know the importance of creating recruitment processes which are fair, inclusive and free from bias. We are committed to promoting equality and diversity and developing a process that values differences.

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    Closing date: Monday 2nd September 2024
    Candidates informed of outcome: Tuesday 10th September 2024
    Interviews: Tuesday 17th September

    Equal Opportunities Monitoring

    Peridot and Kendal College are committed to promoting equality and diversity. To help us raise awareness and support a culture that is diverse and recognises and develops the potential of all, we need to appreciate the profile of candidates who apply for positions. We would therefore be most grateful if you would complete this equality monitoring survey.

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