Accrington and Rossendale College has been providing high quality, award-winning education and training for over 60 years. It was named Outstanding BTEC School/College of the year in 2015 and its success rates for 16-19 year olds put it in the top 10% of FE and tertiary colleges in the country.
Its merger in November 2018 with Nelson and Colne College has further enhanced the diverse curriculum it is able to offer local communities within East Lancashire. This includes further education, apprenticeships and training, adult learning and a highly respected Higher Education programme.
The College’s tutors and assessors have a wealth of industry experience and students have opportunities to take part in masterclasses with Michelin starred chefs, award winning movie directors, actors and Premier League footballers who previously studied at the college, giving students the expert skills and knowledge needed to move on to their chosen career path.
Prior to joining Blackburn College as the Principal and Chief Executive in January 2019, Dr Fazal Dad has gained 28 years’ experience in Further Education, previously working in three different FE Institutions in the West Midlands. Posts held by Fazal included Part Time Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Head of Department, Assistant Principal and Deputy Principal. Prior to this, on leaving school, Fazal completed an apprenticeship in Electrical Engineering and worked in the private sector for eight years in the Electrical Engineering Industry.
Fazal has two Masters Degrees and a PhD in Leadership and Management from Worcester University. He has participated in a range of expert panels across the country and has helped to shape national policy on Study Programmes, Professional Teaching Standards and the Post 16 Maths Review. Fazal is also a reviewer with the QAA.
Blackburn College has been providing education for over 130 years. It is the largest Further Education college in Pennine Lancashire and is one of the largest providers of Higher Education in a college in England. Each year, the College provides learning opportunities to almost 12,000 students at all levels and across a wide range of sectors, meeting the needs of the local community by offering a broad curriculum. This includes A Levels, Technical and Vocational Courses, apprenticeships, Degree-level qualifications and a range of programmes for Adult learners including shorter, part-time courses. With a 100% A Level pass rate in 23 A Level subjects, high numbers of students achieving Triple Distinction Star grades (equivalent to 3A*s at A Level) and 93% of graduates being in work or further study within six months of completing their Higher Education course, study at Blackburn College leads to meaningful careers and further study.
Bev joined Blackpool and The Fylde College (B&FC) in April 2013 as Principal and Chief Executive with over 20 years’ experience in further and higher education colleges in England. She believes in the power of education and training to transform lives and that the development of technical and professional education underpins the success of the UK economy. Bev is on the Independent Panel for the Review of Post 18 Education and Funding. She was a member of the Independent Panel on Technical Education chaired by Lord Sainsbury, the recommendations of which formed the basis of the current post 16 reform. Bev sits on the Board of the Institute for Apprenticeships and the Lancashire LEP Skills and Employment Board.
B&FC is England’s highest performing large college for school leaver success and is a pioneer for innovative higher and degree apprenticeships in partnership with leading employers. The College is judged Outstanding by Ofsted and around 16,000 students choose to access programmes across a wide range of subjects and levels each year. Its degree-level provision with UK top 10 institution Lancaster University has received the highest possible rating from the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) and was awarded Gold in the Government’s new Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). It is one of only eight colleges in England to have Foundation Degree Awarding powers, demonstrating the strength and maturity of its higher education programmes and high levels of confidence in its provision. The College works with more than 1,000 employers across the country and was recently awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education for its technical and professional work in partnership with industry.
Jill joined Blackpool Sixth as Principal in January 2015 after more than 20 years working at Runshaw College, seven of these as a senior leader.
Jill originally trained in hospitality management, having visions of managing hotels worldwide. However in 1994 her career took an unexpected turn when she entered the world of education initially as a teacher of tourism and hospitality before moving into middle management in 1998 and senior management in 2008.
Jill is currently a Director of the Fylde Coast Teaching School, a Director of FCAT and a governor at Blackpool Aspire Academy. Jill is also an Ofsted Inspector.
Blackpool Sixth is an outstanding specialist sixth form college serving the Fylde Coast of Lancashire. With a choice of over 50 advanced level options, specialist teaching and fantastic facilities, Blackpool Sixth gives all its students the perfect springboard to university and great careers. In 2018, the College celebrated another year of brilliant A Level and BTEC results. The overall pass rate was 99% with many students achieving a whole string of top grade passes. Last year 98% of its students successfully progressed to university, higher apprenticeships or other high quality employment with training. Together with a local high school, Blackpool Sixth is the lead organisation in the Fylde Coast Teaching School Alliance, taking a key role in shaping and delivering the training and professional development of current and future generations of teachers in the region. It is also a co-sponsor of the Fylde Coast Academy Trust (FCAT) family of schools.
Karen has recently been appointed as Principal of Burnley College and CEO of THEMIS. She was previously Deputy Principal of the College appointed in September 2011. Karen has worked in Further Education since starting as a part time computing lecturer at Burnley College in 1993. Prior to this Karen worked as a computer programmer and then a Systems Analyst at The Prestige Group PLC, British Aerospace and at Leyland DAF.
Memorable moments for Karen at Burnley College include escorting Prince Charles around the newly built £81m Burnley College / UCLAN Campus in February 2010 and hosting HRH Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip during the 2013 Jubilee year tour.
The Burnley College partnership comprises Burnley College Sixth Form, THEMIS apprenticeship and employer training, Adult Learning and a University Centre. Situated in the heart of Pennine Lancashire, the £82 million college features high-tech learning spaces and laboratories, alongside industry-standard workshops, advanced manufacturing technologies including composites, robotics and automation and an award winning fitness centre focused on strength and conditioning.
The College, rating as Outstanding by Ofsted since 2009, inspires 16-18 year old students following A Level education or a pathway of vocational skills, a thriving community of dedicated adult learners, undergraduates taking university courses and ambitious Themis apprentices on a wide range of Intermediate, Advanced, Higher level and Degree apprenticeships. A Level pass rates in 2018 were 99.8% with the best ever high grades and Advanced Vocational Courses have had a 100% pass rate for the last 15 years. Additionally, Burnley College is a top 10 performing college in the national results tables and winner of the North West Aerospace Skills Provider of the year 2018.
Nick is in his sixth year as Principal of Cardinal Newman College. The college has grown over the last five years and is now one of the largest and most successful sixth form colleges nationally.
He started his career as a teacher of Economics at Peter Symonds College, Winchester spending eleven years there before moving north to be Vice Principal at another Ofsted outstanding college, Carmel College in St Helens. Nick is a firm believer in the power of Sixth form colleges to be a force for social mobility and is currently Chair of the Sixth Form Colleges Association.
Cardinal Newman College is an outstanding Catholic Sixth Form College which welcomes students of all faiths. Situated in the heart of Preston city centre on a unique and compact campus, the main college buildings are centred in a Georgian mansion within stunning grounds which include a lake and wooded areas. As well as offering a range of courses, from A Levels to Level 2 and Level 3 BTEC courses, the College offers degree courses and is also a centre for teacher training with the Catholic Teaching Alliance.
In 2018, the students of Cardinal Newman once again proved why the College is one of the top colleges nationally with another year of outstanding results. The class of 2018 achieved excellent A Level success with a 99.6% A Level pass rate, a 100% BTEC pass rate and 77% of entries achieving High Grades (A*-B Grades or equivalent).
The amazing results topped off an exceptional year for the College, which included 1,169 students gaining places at university with a record number of 13 students offered places at Oxford or Cambridge University.
Wes Johnson joined Lancaster & Morecambe College (LMC) in April 2017 as Principal and Chief Executive. He is also the Chair of The Lancashire Colleges and a Director of the Lancaster & District Chamber of Commerce. Wes has over 20 years’ experience in education, with 11 years as a senior leader in both general and specialist further and higher education institutions across the north of England.
Previous roles have seen Wes lead and deliver education in many settings, from serving disparate rural populations in Cumbria, North Yorkshire and Northumberland to disadvantaged urban communities in areas of Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Leeds and Bradford. As a former teacher trainer and curriculum specialist, Wes has a passion for high impact teaching and learning underpinning the positive influence colleges have in raising aspiration, life chances and the economic wellbeing of individuals, businesses and wider communities.
LMC is a regional provider of technical, professional and creative education, focused on providing young people and adults with the skills and knowledge to enable them to progress into employment or on to further study. Its students have rated LMC as one of the top 20 colleges in the country for student satisfaction. The College’s excellent facilities are designed to meet or exceed industry standards and enable students to choose from a wide range of work related courses from Level 1 to Levels 5/6 (Higher Education).
Over 90% of students progress positively into work, further and higher study. As a key apprenticeship provider in the local area, the College has links to over 700 employers, delivering apprenticeships across 30 occupational areas and works closely with local employers to equip its graduating students to be well placed to secure employment with businesses across the region, or to progress on to further study.
Alison Robinson became Principal and Chief Executive of Myerscough College and University Centre on 1 April 2018 having previously held the position of Vice Principal and Deputy Chief Executive at the College. Alison is also a Director of Landex – Land Based Colleges Aspiring to Excellence and Land Based Assessment Learning (LBAL).
Alison has more than 25 years of experience in the education sector and joined Myerscough College in January 2014, after an 18-year spell firstly in teaching and then as an integral part of the senior management team of Runshaw College. Alison’s early teaching career goes back to 1991, where she taught a variety of humanities and social science subjects across a range of post-16 providers across Lancashire from Levels 1 to 5, before moving on to teaching postgraduate students on the Diploma in Management Studies.
Myerscough provides courses from entry to postgraduate level within their specialist land-based and sports areas and recruits regionally, nationally and in some cases internationally to these programmes, supported by its residential provision for 650 students. Alongside the main campus at Bilsborrow near Preston, Myerscough has centres in Liverpool, Blackburn and Manchester with specialist veterinary nursing provision in Dorset and on the Wirral. The College is the highest performing specialist land-based college for 16-18 year old achievement and a centre of excellence for sport. Apprenticeships are delivered nationally where Myerscough is the largest provider of land-based apprenticeships.
The College is inclusive, recognised as a Leader in Diversity with the mission of providing opportunities for all to succeed and has a supportive and welcoming culture. HE provision is provided by University Centre Myerscough in partnership with UCLan, in which the College is an Associate School. The College is proud of its Teaching Excellence Gold Award.
It has a strong research portfolio working with a wide range of universities including Lancaster, Liverpool, UCLan, Manchester, Nottingham Trent and internationally with Coimbra, Portugal and several American universities. Myerscough works with rural communities across the region, supporting rural businesses and farmers and now utilising a new Food & Farming Innovation & Technology (FFIT) centre, part funded by Lancashire LEP to share best practice and facilitate the knowledge exchange between academia, industry and farmers.
Amanda Melton was appointed Principal and Chief Executive of Nelson and Colne College in March 2012. Amanda is also Chair of the Lancashire LEP Skills and Employment Board, a LEP Board Director for Skills & Technical Education and a Director of Growth Lancashire Ltd, Lancashire’s Economic Development and Regeneration company. She is also Principal of Lancashire Adult Learning which provides community learning in more than 300 venues across Lancashire.
Amanda moved into Further Education at South Trafford College in 1995 after a career in scientific software sales and marketing. She initially taught night school French and Italian, then IT, web design and business, before taking on leadership roles in adult learning, then learner services and finally 16-18 learning. Her experience in quality systems and performance management helped Trafford College to achieve its two Outstanding Ofsted results, and Beacon Status. She was a senior manager at the time of the merger of North and South Trafford Colleges and led the cultural aspects of this merger.
Nelson and Colne College is a high-performing, ambitious organisation situated in the heart of Pendle. It has been rated as Outstanding by Ofsted since 2005 and is currently the number one college in the country for 16-18 learner achievement.
The College incorporates a Sixth Form and Skills Academy, apprenticeships and training, Lancashire Adult Learning and a University Centre. It is also a proud sponsor of the multi-academy Pendle Education Trust and merged with Accrington and Rossendale College on 30 November 2018.
Nelson and Colne College is recognised nationally for its performance and is at the forefront of sector developments. It has developed a strong reputation for its collaborative approach to education, including successful mergers with Lancashire Adult Learning and Accrington and Rossendale College, has been chosen as one of the first colleges to deliver T Levels and has been selected to be a Maths Centre for Excellence.
Dr Lis Smith joined Preston’s College in January 2011 as Principal and Chief Executive following a career in education, skills and employment with the Northwest Development Agency and Higher Education. Having started life as a research and development chemist, it provided the grounding for engaging with industry and public sector to understand their needs and deliver to this, something that is fundamental to the College and its demand-led agenda through being responsive to learners’ and businesses’ needs.
Preston’s College takes great pride in supporting its learners to achieve the qualifications and outcomes they need, alongside the technical skills, knowledge and experience that employers are looking for. In short, the College’s mission is to help make learners ‘the most employable’ and to thrive in their chosen career.
Recognised by Ofsted as a Good college, over 90% of 16-18 year old full-time learners progress on to further study, an apprenticeship or employment. In the Government’s 16/17 Qualification Achievement Rates (QARs), the College ranked seventh best nationally across its course provision and ninth place nationally for 16-18 year-old education and training versus other general FE colleges. The College offers a wide sector-based technical and professional offer at all levels, including 14-16, 16-18, adult, apprenticeship and Higher Education provision.
Simon’s first graduate job was as a systems analyst in the nuclear power industry. Five years later, Simon entered the education profession as a mathematics teacher in 1993. Since that time, he has held a wide variety of teaching and managerial roles within Sixth Form Colleges and General Further Education Colleges in the North of England.
Simon was appointed Principal and Chief Executive at Runshaw College in September 2013 having joined as Assistant Principal in 2006.
Since its initial formation in 1974, Runshaw has developed into one of the largest and most successful providers of 16-18 education in the country and it also meets the needs of adult learners and employers within its local communities. The sixth form centre in Leyland offers a wide range of A Levels and vocational programmes whilst the Chorley campus provides a range of Adult FE and HE courses, and training for apprentices.
Runshaw has been an Ofsted ‘Outstanding’ college for more than 25 years, and it has a national reputation for excellence. Its primary aims are to ‘meet the needs of its community’ whilst also being ‘a fantastic place to study’ and ‘a fantastic place to work’; learner outcomes are consistently outstanding in terms of attainment, added value and progression and satisfaction levels at the college are extremely high from all key stakeholder groups, including students, staff and employers.
Denise Williamson was appointed Principal of West Lancashire College in June 2017 having previously held the positions of Director of Quality and Support and Interim Principal after joining the college in January 2016. Prior to this, she was Assistant Principal at Warrington Collegiate for 12 years.
West Lancashire College is a small, community based college operating in association with NCG which is a large and successful national provider of further and higher education and Apprenticeship training.
The college is home to around 2,500 learners both young people and adults of all abilities and backgrounds and offers programmes from entry level to degree level and every step in between, including BTECs and apprenticeships.