Inspire Education Group (IEG) were delighted to welcome representatives from the Association of Colleges (AoC) and Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority (CPCA) to a Governors Development Event this week, to discuss skills priorities within the region. Governors were equipped with invaluable, first-hand knowledge, to help support IEG in developing and responding to local skill needs.

In attendance were Ian Jackson (Chair of Governors), David Pennel, Professor Sir Les Ebdon, Jonathan Teesdale, Angie Morris, Gillian Beasley, Marco Cereste, Rod Allerton, Faustina Yang and Tony Warner, IEG invitees Rachel Nicholls, Alison Foz, Louise Perry, Sarah Young, Angela O’Reilly and Carol Hargreaves, and representatives from the AoC and CPCA, David Hughes and Fliss Miller. The session was designed to provide governors with an improved and up-to-date understanding of the national landscape, particularly around the recent Office of National Statistics re-classification of Colleges, and the impact of that on the Group. 

The event commenced with a presentation from David Hughes, Chief Executive of the Association of Colleges, who spoke of the FE Sector Landscape and National Policy Context. After refreshments and an opportunity to network, Fliss Miller, Interim Associate Skills Director of Cambridge and Peterborough Combined Authority, began their presentation, examining the Skills Regional Landscape, CPCA’s priorities and plans for developing the partnership between the combined authority and Inspire Education Group.

The session closed with a discussion of the implications for Inspire Education Group, delivered by IEG’s Chief Executive Officer, Rachel Nicholls, and Executive Director of Business Development, Alison Fox. The pair provided an action plan for the next 12-18 months and considered how IEG contributes to local skills needs, in preparation for inspection.

Reflecting on the event, Rachel commented, “It was wonderful to welcome AoC Chief Executive David Hughes and Fliss Miller, Associate Director of Skills from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority to discuss all things skills related, both at a national and regional level. The session enabled governors and leaders to explore government policy, the funding landscape, curriculum reforms and the impact of the reclassification of colleges as public sector organisations.  We also were able to interrogate and discuss local skills data to ensure that the Inspire Education Group is well placed for the future, builds on our successes and importantly meets the needs of the communities and employers we serve”.