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South Hampshire College Group Chair Designate

Be part of the new and ambitious board at South Hampshire College Group, creating better futures for all students, apprentices and local businesses in our region.

  • Location: Hampshire, Southampton, Eastleigh and Fareham
  • Salary: Unremunerated, with reasonable expenses paid

About South Hampshire College Group

South Hampshire College Group (SHCG) is a large and newly merged college group, that brings together three Further Education colleges from Southampton, Eastleigh and Fareham to make one strong, responsive and ambitious organisation.

Creating a College for the Future

The collaboration of the three colleges will enhance and strengthen the range of provision and delivery of high-quality courses to serve the education and training needs of more than 3,600 full-time students, 1,200 apprentices, 500 L4 and higher qualifications and over 4,500 adult learners each year. We are a major employer in the region with over 800 staff, which are integral to the organisation and our future success.

The merger will see a financially stronger, more sustainable, and resilient group, focused on the best interests of students, staff and employers in the communities in which it serves. We will deliver an enhanced quality of provision and curriculum offer, from entry to level 6, across all three colleges. With greater learning opportunities and more progression routes, working closely with local employers and organisations to support curriculum development and student employability in a collaborative response to the skills gap and employers’ training needs to support the growth of the local economy.

City College Southampton

A small but well-established general further fducation college in Hampshire, providing career-led courses, apprenticeships and education for young people, adults and businesses. The college has been serving the City of Southampton for over 70 years and currently has around 3,000 students and apprentices, with a turnover of c.£12.2 million in 2021/22 and forecast to be c.£13m in 2022/23.


Eastleigh College

A leading technical and professional college which teaches over 5,700 students from across the country each year, offering a wide range of programmes to provide school leavers, apprentices and adult learners at all educational stages with the skills and knowledge needed for a highly rewarding future. Through its extensive industry partnerships across the Solent, Hampshire and ‘South Central’ region, the college also supports more than 1,000 businesses with their ongoing training, updating, certification and licensing needs.


Fareham College

Teaches over 3,200 students each year and offers a diverse range of courses. These include T Levels, traineeships, apprenticeships, HE, and part-time and professional courses to prepare students for employment in their chosen career path or progress to university or onto an apprenticeship. The college was a wave one T Level provider in 2020 and is the lead college for the South Coast IoT as well as the leader of the Solent region’s collaboration on the Strategic Development Fund pilot and subsequent round two Strategic Development Fund project. The college plays a key role as a regional anchor institution, leading on these DfE priority programmes and taking an active role in the development of the Local Skills Improvement Plan as well as being the regional lead for the Local Skills Improvement Fund Application.


Creating better futures.


To enable all our students and apprentices, and our region’s businesses to be successful in their future, whatever that may hold for them, through high-quality technical and professional education and training.


  • We will lead a better-distributed, accessible, and collaborative group of South Hampshire.
  • Through this, we will provide outstanding education and training across a wide community of students and employers in the Solent region.
  • Our work will support the skills needs of employers and improve regional productivity, economic development and social mobility.
  • We will be an agile organisation, constantly developing and improving.
  • We will be responsive to policy and reforms in further education, and be adaptive to the changing needs of the region’s employers.

Strategic Plan

Post-merger, the final strategic plan will be co-created by the board and the leadership team and developed with stakeholder engagement. You will join us at an exciting time as we begin this journey, and have the opportunity to apply your skills and experience to help shape the future of the College group.

Potential priorities

  • Making the merger work – people and culture, finance and systems.
  • Enhancing services to students, communities and employers.
  • Delivering excellence in learning and teaching.
  • Creating sector-leading FE facilities and overseeing digital transformation.
  • Building foundations for growth and long-term financial security.

Our governing board and its members are critical to our continuous development and future success. We appreciate the time they give, the expertise they share, and both the professional support and challenge they offer to our CEO & Principal and executive team.

Peridot Partners and South Hampshire College Group 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:

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

Shaun-Eden-education recruitment-consultant-Peridot-Partners

If you would like to know more about this role please contact Shaun Eden

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Introduction from the Chair

The opportunity to join a new board of a new college group is exciting and offers the potential to be part of a regionally significant FE merger from day one. I have led a Joint Steering Group to the point of merger and am laying the foundations for a top-performing board. There is no doubt about the challenges and opportunities ahead and the new board will need to develop at pace. Being part of that is a fantastic opportunity for someone wanting to make a difference in the area and be part of something new and impactful. I look forward to supporting a transition to a new Chair and welcome anyone with the passion and commitment to play a key role in the success of the South Hampshire College Group.

Sandra Prail MBE

Who we are looking for

As the college for Hampshire and the surrounding areas, we feel it is important you understand our city through having lived or worked here. It is a complex area, with pockets of high deprivation. But there is also a huge amount of untapped potential, and we consider it our duty to unearth talent and aspiration to enrich the lives of our local population.

We feel it is important you have experience of, or prior exposure to, a non-executive board and can easily recognise the key differentiators between strategic oversight and operational delivery. With sound knowledge of corporate governance and how fundamental it is to both the success and sustainability of an organisation, it would be helpful if you brought previous experience of chairing meetings and events, ideally in the capacity as a non-executive Vice Chair, Committee Chair, Trustee or Director.

Recognising the diversity of our city, we very much encourage the interest of candidates who will support us in our ambition to further diversify the leadership and governance of South Hampshire College Group. We acknowledge there is work to do and working hard to ensure our decision-makers are reflective of the communities we serve.

This role offers a fantastic opportunity to join a new ambitious and committed non-executive board, and genuinely have an impact on the future success of the college and its students. Working with the board you will help develop a new strategy for the group, ensuring the college continues to make a demonstrable and positive contribution for the benefit of the thousands of students who study and train with us each year.

Role Description

We seek to appoint a Chair Designate who will progress over time to take on the role of Chair of the Corporation.

As Chair Designate of the South Hampshire College Group Board, we require you to support the current Chair in leading our newly formed non-executive governing body with energy, enthusiasm, professionalism, and dedication. We look to build a board that comprises of talented and committed members who, collectively, monitor the progress and development of the new college group and ensure we develop and work towards ambitious strategic plans.

Our governors come from a range of industries and backgrounds including higher education, further education, legal services, private and commercial industry, SME’s, local government and the college itself.

For your time, energy and expertise, we promise to ensure you receive the critical support and development you will need in order to be successful in this non-executive role. We welcome applicants from all backgrounds and we welcome diversity in all its forms including diversity of thought and cognitive function.

We will invest in you as you are investing in us, and through our partnerships with national membership and sector-based organisations, we look forward to helping you to recognise how fundamental the further education sector is to our country’s economic development, and more crucially to the lives of the people who study with us.


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

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

    To access a full job description and application details,
    please fill out the form below.


    Thank you for your interest in this role.

    Please complete this Skills and Experience Questionnaire and this Equality Monitoring Survey and download the Role Description and Person Specification.

    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 “South Hampshire College – Chair Designate into the subject field.

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

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

    We wish to encourage applications regardless of race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origins, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, marital or civil partner status, pregnancy or maternity, age or religion or belief.

    All applications will be considered solely on merit.

    Disabled applicants are invited to contact us in confidence at any point during the recruitment process to discuss steps that could be taken to overcome operational difficulties presented by the role, or if any adjustments or support are required regarding the recruitment process.


    Closing date: 9 a.m. Monday 16th October 2023
    Interviews: Thursday 2nd November 2023

    Equal Opportunities Monitoring

    Peridot and South Hampshire 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.

    The information will be treated confidentially and anonymously and will help us to support our commitment to fair recruitment practice. All information provided will be held in the strictest confidence and will not be shared with anyone, in line with the new Data Protection Act 2018 launched on 25 May 2018.

    The information provided does not form part of the decision-making process and will not affect your application.

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