Ian Ashman - Hackney Community College

Name: Ian Ashman

Name and type of college: Hackney Community College - a General FE College

History of organisation: Hackney Community College was a GFE, formed from a merger of an FEC, an Adult Education Service and a Sixth Form Centre in 1992, with roots in Victorian vocational education.  The College merged into New City College in 2016, with the award-winning Shoreditch Campus remaining a centre of the new institution.

The offer included an A level programme, a programme for students with LDD, a range of vocational courses, apprenticeships and a basic education, ESOL and adult education.  It had 1,500 16-18 students, around 5,000 adults and 1,000 apprentices.

Hackney, and the surrounding Boroughs, are highly diverse.  They include some of the poorest, least qualified residents in the country, alongside affluent communities.  The Borough benefitted from major investment around the 2012 Olympics and the last 10 years as seen huge growth in digital ‘Tech City’ companies large and small.

The College is well respected by its local communities and won several awards for its work in engagement of these communities and employers, including during the Olympics and with Tech City Employers.  Despite losing significant funding post 2010, the College continued to improve its quality and was the first graded Good using the Inspection framework introduced in 2015.

Experience to draw from: I have 12 years’ experience as a Principal, in two successful colleges.  This followed 15 years’ senior management experience in colleges and local authorities and work in the voluntary sector.  This experience included:

  • Taking a college with low quality provision and poor success rates, driving through culture change and quality improvement programmes
  • Supporting colleges with substantial revenue challenges, including restructuring and reorganising within available resources and finding a good merger partner
  • Developing and implementing £50m of Capital Projects, on time and in budget
  • Managing effective working relationships within the senior team and with governing bodies, including developing a framework on the roles of governance and management

Since retiring, I have been AoC President (in 16/17) and have worked as an independent consultant, for example supporting a successful IOT consortium, working with the private sector and local authorities.  I also work with Pearson and with a Construction Project Management Company.  These experiences have given me expertise in representing the sector, in stakeholder management and in partnership working.

I have been an Executive Coach since 2016, undertaking the ILM Level 7 qualification.  This has given me knowledge and experience of working confidentially to support Principals and Senior Managers, helping them to develop ‘solutions based’ approaches to major challenges.

I am able to support you with:

I am happy to undertake leadership exchange and support activity in the following areas:

  • Managing culture change
  • Managing quality improvement and Inspection
  • Addressing financial challenges
  • Mergers, including option development, appraisal and implementation planning
  • Developing and implementing major capital projects
  • Managing the senior team, including difficult relations and delegation
  • Governance, including handling relationships with the Chair
  • Partnership working and stakeholder management
  • Developing solutions focussed approaches
  • Addressing issues of confidence

Contact information:

Email: ian-ashman@outlook.com