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Governors West Nottinghamshire College

West Nottinghamshire College logo for FE recruitment

West Nottinghamshire College seeks to engage additional Corporation Board Members (Governors) with a passion for further and vocational education and a drive for ambition to build on the College's continued success for the benefit of their students, their staff and the local.

  • Location: Mansfield, Nottinghamshire
  • Salary: Unremunerated, with reasonable expenses paid

About West Nottinghamshire College

West Nottinghamshire College is a medium-sized general further education college and sixth form serving the districts of Mansfield, Ashfield and surrounding clusters of smaller towns and villages across the borders between Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.

Our Mission is:

To provide skills to enable all students, employer partners and our community to thrive.

Our Vision is that West Nottinghamshire College will become:

A force for raising aspirations across our communities, where high-performing staff encourage students to stretch the boundaries of their potential and, in partnership with employers, develop the workforce of the future.

Our Values are:

Respect, Integrity, Collaboration, High Expectations and Responsibility.

We employ around 760 staff, who have supported the College’s leadership through financial recovery, Covid and the cost-of-living crisis to improve the College’s offer and performance. They have been galvanised into this by a clear ambition to be the College that local communities need it to be and an empowering, open and honest culture, led by the governing body and the executive.

We have five sites, specialist construction and engineering centres in Ashfield, and our sixth-form College, the Mansfield Education Hub and our main site in Mansfield. The quality of the buildings and the facilities and equipment within them are very high, providing an excellent basis in which to deliver high-quality teaching and learning. Our main site includes two buildings that are leased to Nottingham Trent University as part of a formal 25-year collaboration, which is unique in England. We have begun work on the construction of the Future Tech Skills and Knowledge Exchange, an £8M investment in partnership with NTU on our sixth form College site, a £6M development and extension of our construction site to incorporate more modern methods of construction and a £3 civil engineering training centre. We are partners in the Automated Distribution and Manufacturing Centre, a £20M investment in Ashfield and the Mansfield Connect project a £20M investment aimed at re-invigorating the town centre.

We turn over around £37M and have delivered an operating surplus in every year since 2019. We have very low levels of debt but no significant cash reserves. Having suffered a significant financial crisis and entered intervention in 2018, the College now has a secure operating model.

Our staff are paid well compared to most other colleges in the East Midlands but, like most other colleges, we have faced competitive challenges in recruiting for some technical teaching roles and some lower-paid support roles. However, our excellent reputation has allowed us to recruit and retain staff well.

In February 2017, despite the underlying issues that would emerge a year later, the College retained its ‘Good’ rating from Ofsted. By 2019, the overall quality was definitely not ‘Good’ and significant effort has been made to ensure that all students have a good experience and achieve good outcomes. Our most recent inspection has now confirmed that we are a ‘Good’ College with ‘Outstanding’ features (Personal Development & High Needs). The quality of leadership at all levels is very strong and continues to improve and governance is equally as strong with almost all governors playing a hands-on role in College activity, whilst providing robust support and challenge to the executive.

There is a strong sense of empowered curriculum ownership in all departments, with senior leaders increasingly stepping away from the details of the planning process, whilst encouraging heads of departments to be courageous and ambitious in their plans. The ASPIRE curriculum (Ambition, Success in Life, Planning, Individual Needs, Relevance and Empowerment) provides the framework for curriculum design and there is a strong use of labour market intelligence and employer engagement within the design process.

The College launched its first three T Levels (Construction, Early Years and Engineering) in September 2023 and will introduce further subjects (Nursing, Care, Animal Care and Computer Science) and additional pathways in Engineering and Construction in 2024, with further development in subsequent years. The College’s adult offer has grown dramatically over the last four years and is now very clearly aimed at supporting local people and local businesses. Apprenticeship provision is, perhaps, the most improved aspect of College provision over the last four years. It is now consistently high quality, with good outcomes in every subject. Growth opportunities are very evident, but all are driven by the needs of local employers. The College has no higher education as this is delivered on-site by Nottingham Trent University, but it still delivers some higher apprenticeships and high-level professional courses.

The College’s reputation amongst its local stakeholders is very strong and continuing to grow. We play leading roles in local Place Boards and with employer representative bodies; striving to ensure that the needs of our entire community and the activities of the College are entirely aligned.

The College is at the heart of discussions on the potential for the devolution of Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire as the East Midlands Mayoral County Combined Authority. Elections are planned for May 2024 with AEB being devolved in 2025. The College is leading the development of partnerships which could transform the way that provision is designed, commissioned and aligned with other local activities.

Peridot Partners and West Nottinghamshire 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 consultants at Peridot Partners:

Sarah Atkins-Boal | sarahs@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07841 017043

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

Shaun Eden | shaun@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07951 509128

If you would like to know more about this role please contact Sarah Atkins-Boal

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Role Description

The work of a Member of the Corporation Board (Governor) in setting the strategic direction of the West Nottinghamshire College and providing leadership is central to the success of the College. By becoming a Governor at West Nottinghamshire College, you will be joining a high-performing Board and successful college. This is your opportunity to steer provision that benefits the students, the local community and employers directly. Being a Governor at West Nottinghamshire College is hugely rewarding and is an opportunity to make a real difference to the communities served by the college.

While in some respects the role of the Board of Governors can be summed up as one of exercising “oversight” of a college and its business, the term should not be taken to imply in any sense a passive or merely symbolic role. The Board is accountable for the financial solvency of the College, its sound management and the quality of the service it provides. The Board is also accountable for the proper use of the public funds entrusted to it.

Sound governance requires more than simply ensuring that the books balance and that the CEO & Principal is getting on with the business of running the College within the parameters established by the governors. Colleges must be able to respond to changes in the direction of government policy and anticipate changing needs in their communities. The Corporation Board must be actively involved in reviewing the role of the College and in planning and managing change to ensure the long-term health and success of the college.

You will need to have a passion for education and a drive for ambition to build on the college’s continued success for the benefit of their students, their staff and the local community. This should be underpinned by a track record of strong strategic leadership in one or more of the following areas of expertise:

  • Audit, risk and compliance
  • Finance
  • Capital development
  • Educational quality assurance – FE, HE or schools

These roles offer a fantastic opportunity to join an ambitious and dynamic Governing Board and genuinely have an impact on the future success of the college, its students, its staff and community. You will support the development and influence the direction of West Nottinghamshire College at a time of great momentum for the College as it seeks to grow the organisation and aspire to provide outstanding education and training opportunities for young people and adults across the Mansfield, Ashfield and wider Nottinghamshire Area.

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

Sarah Atkins-Boal | sarahs@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07841 017043

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

Shaun Eden | shaun@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07951 509128

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    Please ensure that your application is emailed to response@peridotpartners.co.uk inserting “West Nottinghamshire College – Governor” into the subject field.

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

    Sarah Atkins-Boal | sarahs@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07841 017043

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

    Shaun Eden | shaun@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07951 509128

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    Closing date: 9 a.m. Wednesday 10th April 2024

    We are in the process of confirming interview dates. We will update the site once confirmed and contact those who have applied.

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