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Director | The Centre for Transforming Access and Student Outcomes in Higher Education (TASO)

King's College London

TASO is a new What Works Centre for the Higher Education sector with a focus on eliminating equality gaps in HE within 20 years. We're looking for a new Director to spearhead their development which will improve lives by transforming widening participation in HE.

  • Location: London. Flexible working arrangements will be considered.
  • Salary: £65,000 - £80,000, inclusive of London weighting; appointment dependent on experience.

About the role

The Centre for Transforming Access and Student Outcomes in Higher Education (TASO) is a new What Works Centre for the higher education sector, part of the Government’s What Works Movement. Our focus will be on eliminating equality gaps in higher education within 20 years.

Established in Spring 2019, we are being set up by a consortium of King’s College London, Nottingham Trent University and the Behavioural Insights Team, and we are funded by the Office for Students. We will be fully independent and self-funding by 2022.

Committed to the generation, synthesis and dissemination of high-quality evidence about effective practice in widening participation and student outcomes, we will be an independent hub for higher education professionals to access leading research, toolkits, evaluation techniques and more to help widen participation and improve equality within the sector.

TASO has substantial sector backing, and there is a significant opportunity to build upon this goodwill to create an influential organisation which will establish ‘what works’ in widening participation and ensure that this is adopted by policy makers and practitioners in HE, government and beyond.

Who we're looking for

We are now looking to appoint our founding Director who will lead the process to take TASO forward as it spins out of King’s College London to become an independent charity. The Director will be responsible for launching and then leading an effective organisation which can deliver its mission to transform widening participation in higher education; ensuring our long-term financial sustainability; building our brand and presence in the higher education sector; and ensuring that higher education adopts evidence-based practice.

We are seeking a compelling speaker and influencer, who will be a credible advocate on behalf of TASO to secure adoption of ‘what works’ in policy and practice. With a belief in the value of evidence-based policy and practice, you will have a track record in securing funding, and have experience of building and developing a team from inception to maturity. Furthermore, you will bring a pragmatic approach to meet the demands and challenges of developing a start-up organisation.

Your experience could come from an education, charity, thinktank or similar organisation, but you will have knowledge of the higher education sector, widening participation or other policy areas relating to social mobility. While you may not have a research background, you will have experience of applying research findings to combat societal challenges and be highly numerate. With an enabling and collaborative style, committed to participatory approaches to working with stakeholders, you will be able to build enthusiasm and capacity in non-expert collaborators.

If you are excited by the opportunity to develop TASO to become the go-to organisation for transforming equality in higher education, then please contact our consultants at Peridot Partners for a confidential discussion:

Emma Harvey | 07702 678653 | emma@peridotpartners.co.uk

Philippa Fabry | 07772 902071 | philippa@peridotpartners.co.uk

Closing date: 9am, Monday 20th January 2020

Flexible working arrangements will be considered.

Equal opportunities is university policy.

If you would like to know more about this role please contact Emma Harvey

View profile

Dear Applicant,

Thank you for your interest in the new role of Director for The Centre for Transforming Access and Student Outcomes (TASO).

TASO has a unique opportunity to drive equality in higher education, and I have been hugely encouraged by the level of support the HE sector has already demonstrated for its mission. Widening participation is currently centre stage in higher education, and TASO will need to work with hundreds of institutions across the sector to address this important challenge.

As a start-up organisation, we need a confident leader with the ability to build our presence and identity, and successfully influence a wide range of stakeholders. Our Director will ensure that we build the evidence-base of ‘what works’ in widening participation and drive the adoption of this evidence to change practice and policy within higher education.  You will build and lead a small, dynamic team and secure the long-term sustainability of TASO beyond our initial funding from the Office for Students.

If you share my passion for equality within higher education and are excited by the opportunity to launch and develop an organisation that has the potential to eliminate equality gaps in education, then please do read on.

Professor Eunice Simmons
Chair of the Board of Trustees

The Centre for Transforming Access and Student Outcomes in Higher Education (TASO) is being set up by a consortium of King’s College London, Nottingham Trent University and the Behavioural Insights Team.

TASO was set up in 2019 and is funded by the Office for Students. TASO will be fully independent and self-funding by 2022.

Our Vision and Mission

Our vision is to eliminate equality gaps in higher education within 20 years.

Our mission is to improve lives through evidence-based practice in higher education.

Evidence and Impact Exchange

Previously known as the Evidence and Impact Exchange (EIX), TASO will exist as an independent hub for higher education professionals to access leading research, toolkits, evaluation techniques and more to help widen participation and improve equality within the sector.

Expert Advisers and Researchers

In addition to the organisations co-leading the establishment of TASO, we will also be supported by other expert researchers from The Education Policy Institute, Higher Education Access Tracker, Coventry University and The Bridge Group. We also have a team of advisers that include Prof. Simon Burgess (Bristol), Prof. Christine Broughan (Coventry), Dr. Sam Friedman (LSE) and Dr. Michael Sanders (King’s College London).

What Works Centre

TASO is an affiliate What Works Centre, and part of the UK Government’s What Works Movement. This means that TASO is committed to the generation, synthesis and dissemination of high-quality evidence about effective practice in widening participation and student outcomes.

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

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If you would like an informal conversation around the role, please contact our advising consultants at Peridot Partners:

Emma Harvey | 07702 678653 | emma@peridotpartners.co.uk 

Philippa Fabry | 07772 902071 | philippa@peridotpartners.co.uk

To apply, please submit a CV and a supporting statement (the supporting statement should be a maximum of two sides of A4). The supporting statement should clearly outline your suitability for the role against the qualifications, experience and personal characteristics criteria in the person specification which are marked as ‘AP’ (to be assessed via the application) and should explain your motivation for applying for the role.

Please ensure that your application is emailed to response@peridotpartners.co.uk inserting “Director, TASO” into the subject field. In your covering email please let us know of your availability against the dates in the timetable given below.

Disabled applicants

King’s College London is keen to increase the number of disabled people it employs. We therefore encourage applications from individuals with a disability who are able to carry out the duties of the post.

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 any operational difficulties presented by the role. Please note that if you would like to contact us as a disabled applicant, to make us aware of potential operational difficulties, adjustments or support, then please email: emf@peridotpartners.co.uk.

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.

Timetable

Please make a note of the interview dates as these dates cannot be changed.

Closing date: 9am, Monday 20th January 2020
Candidates informed of outcome: by Friday 24th January 2020
Preliminary interviews: Wednesday 29th & Friday 31st January 2020
Candidates informed of outcome: by Tuesday 4th February 2020
Informal meetings with Chair: between Tuesday 4th February & Thursday 13th February 2020 (TBC)
Panel interviews: Thursday 13th February 2020

Equal Opportunities Monitoring

Peridot and TASO 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 equality monitoring form.

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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