Grimsby Institute Group announces new Chief Executive and Principal post holders

The Grimsby Institute Group recently announced the retirement of Principal and Chief Executive, Mrs Sue Middlehurst, at the end of the academic year, which will see the role split between two posts, which have now been appointed to.

Mrs Middlehurst joined the Group in January 2011 and has led the Group to consolidate its position as one of the leading further education colleges in the county. Mrs Middlehurst refocused the college’s vision and mission on learner success and teaching quality which was recognised by a successful Ofsted ‘Good’ re-validation in 2013.

The Group’s Corporation has taken the decision to split the role of Principal and Chief Executive to enable a greater focus on strategic direction, curriculum quality and its ambition to be recognised as an outstanding college by Ofsted. This decision is not uncommon in the FE sector, it is an approach that has already been adopted by a number of other institutions including colleges in Lincoln, Hull and Manchester.

Jonathan Lovelle, Chair of the Corporation said: “We are well on our way to improving our Ofsted rating of Good to Outstanding and we have made significant changes over the past few years to continue to ensure the Group is in the best place to maximise on the future opportunities and challenges of the FE sector.

“The change to two separate roles enables the Group to move forward with confidence in both education management and strategic leadership.”

The Group has announced that Gill Alton has been appointed as its new Chief Executive, taking up the post in March 2016. Gill is currently Principal and Chief Executive of Rotherham College and was formerly a Vice Principal at the Grimsby Institute with responsibility for Curriculum and Quality.

Gill brings with her a wealth of experience at a senior level in further education. She joined Rotherham College in September 2010 and developed a vision and strategy to improve the College’s quality and performance ratings, which is now recognised as Good with Outstanding features and is judged to have outstanding financial management.

Gill will work closely with Debra Gray, who was recently appointed as Principal of the Grimsby Institute and University Centre Grimsby, and Clare Wareing, Principal of Yorkshire Coast College in Scarborough, who will focus on ensuring the educational activity of the Group continues to serve the local communities as the Group moves towards its vision of becoming an outstanding institution.

Jonathan Lovelle continued: “I am delighted that Gill is returning the Group, she has a wealth of experience that will support our vision of being an innovative, inspiring and outstanding organisation as well as guiding the overall strategic direction.

“Gill returns as the further education sector is changing; it is a sector that creates opportunities and Gill will lead the Group to grow and innovate in existing and new education and training markets. Gill will have overall responsibility for our strategic performance.”