Board of Governors

What is the Corporation?

This is the governing body of the college, which was established as an independent Further Education Corporation on 1 April 1993 under the provisions of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992.  The Corporation’s Instrument and Articles of Government provide the legal basis on which it operates, specifying the composition of the Corporation, the way in which it must conduct its business, its duties and responsibilities and its role as an employer, with regard to students and with regard to the discharge of its financial responsibilities.

What does the Corporation do?

The Corporation is responsible for the strategic direction and the effective management of the College. The Corporation decides on strategic policy and the overall direction of the College, as well as monitoring the performance of the most senior managers in the College.  Collectively, the members of the Corporation must ensure that they operate within the legal framework of the College and must observe the duties which are set out for them within these documents.

How do Governors operate?

The Corporation must be properly constituted and each member of the Corporation owes a fiduciary duty to the College, that is, they must show the highest loyalty to the College and act in good faith in its interests.  Effectively each member must act honestly, diligently and independently whilst, at the same time, paying due attention to the requirement to take collective responsibility as part of the Board.  The Corporation regularly reviews and updates all of its policies and procedures which provide the framework for its operations, to ensure that they are up-to-date and comply with the best practice in the sector and particularly the key principles for public office, namely:

  • Selflessness
  • Integrity
  • Objectivity
  • Accountability
  • Openness
  • Honesty
  • Leadership

These values are enshrined in the Board’s Code of Conduct which outlines the standards set by the Corporation for Governorship and detailed Standing Orders for the operation of the Corporation and the way in which it conducts its business.  These include Rules of Procedure for Membership and an open Register of Members’ Interests which is available for public scrutiny.

Corporation Business

The Corporation believes that its business is open to public scrutiny and, with the exception of those items of business which are deemed to be confidential as defined within the instrument of Government, for example the pay and remuneration of an individual, its policy is that the Corporation meetings are open meetings.  Entitlement to attend meetings is defined within the Standing Orders.  Members of staff who are not Corporation members or senior postholders are regularly in attendance at all meetings and other members of staff are invited where they are presenting particular reports to the Corporation. Papers and minutes of the Corporation are published in accordance with specific arrangements and, with the exception of those items specifically designated as confidential, all papers and minutes are available for public scrutiny as are any documents, Regulations, bye-laws etc. of the Corporation.

The Corporation operates through a number of committees which deal with the detailed work of the Corporation as follows:

  • Finance & Estates
  • Audit Committee
  • Standards & Quality Committee, dealing with all aspects of curriculum and quality and performance
  • Search & Governance Committee with responsibility for all aspects of membership of the Corporation
  • HR Committee
  • Remuneration Committee – with responsibility for the employment of senior postholders
  • Student Committee
  • HE Committee

All of the committees operate to approved terms of reference and specified membership and there is an approved Scheme of Delegation.  Copies of the minutes of Corporation meetings are available from the Clerk.

In addition, Governors also undertake a range of training to support and develop their understanding of the College.

How to become a Governor

Membership of the Corporation is broadly defined within the Instrument of Government and, within these parameters, the Corporation has agreed the following profile of Governors:

  • 15 members appointed for the range of experience and knowledge and suitability to perform the role – known as external members
  • 1 teaching staff member – elected and nominated only by the academic staff
  • 1 support staff member – elected and nominated only by the support staff
  • 2 student members
  • The Principal.

This profile seeks to maximise the College’s opportunities to involve all key stakeholders.

The Search and Governance Committee of the Corporation is responsible for all membership issues and no appointments can be made to the Corporation without advice from the Search Committee.  The Corporation is committed to embracing diversity and aims to attract Governors from a wide range of background who can offer the following:

  • Commitment and interest in education and training
  • Time and energy to undertake the role
  • Clear appreciation of the role of a Governor and, particularly the role as it applies to those who are co-opted/elected/nominated by other bodies, for Governors who will serve in those categories
  • Skills and experience likely to be of use to the College
  • Potential for a range of contacts likely to assist the College in its interface with the community
  • Business Governors likely to be senior within their organisations.

Anyone who is interested in serving on the Board should contact Pam Robertson, the Clerk to the Corporation by email:

Corporation Members:

Formerly the Chair of the Havant Sixth Form College Board, Mike has been elected as Chair of the Havant & South Downs College Board for 2017/18. He was Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth and has significant experience in Further and Higher Education. Mike also serves on other Boards in a part-time capacity.

Appointed in July 2016, Martin has a blend of experience in both the commercial and education sectors. Having worked in hotels for many years, he then retrained as a teacher and has held leadership and management roles in both the Further and Higher Education sectors. For the past 16 years, he has been focused on organisational and business improvement working with a large number of organisations of all sizes and has a strong background in quality management.

Simon previously served on the Havant Sixth Form College Board as both Vice-Chair and Chair of a number of committees. As well as a range of business and engineering experience, in England and abroad, he also has extensive HE experience and was Dean of the Technology faculty at the University of Portsmouth for a number of years.

Originally appointed 4 July 2013, Ron is now serving his second term of office and has been elected as Vice-Chair of the Board for 2017/18. Now retired, he was Director and then Chief Executive of Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership. Involved right from the start in managing the bid to government and the negotiations with government officials, local government CEOs, partners and stakeholders for the establishment of the innovative LEP. Previous appointments include Head of Sustainable Development at West Sussex County Council, 2007-10, and Head of Economic Strategy, 2004-07. Also worked extensively in the private sector. Ron also has a range of other charitable interests both locally and nationally.

Michael joined the Board in October 2016 and was formerly a member of the Havant Sixth Form College Board where he chaired the Finance and General Purposes Committee and was a member of the Strategic Planning Committee. Michael is an Accountant and currently works with BEST Operations and Financial Controller at Fasset Ltd. He was previously Group Commercial Finance Manager, The Body Shop and Retail Finance Analyst, B&Q plc.

Clive is Employment Lawyer partner with Paris Smith LLP in Southampton. Appointed to the South Downs Board in December 2015, Clive has many years’ experience of FE, both as a Governor and through providing professional advice and support to FE and sixth form colleges.

Mike was formerly a member of the Havant Sixth Form College Board. He is a local Havant Councillor and the Scrutiny Lead for Economy, Planning, Development and Prosperity and Havant Scrutiny and Policy Development Panel. Mike had a long naval career prior to working in industry.

Lucy joined the Board in October 2016 and was formerly a member of the Havant Sixth Form College Board where she chaired the Quality and Standards Committee and served on the Search Committee. Lucy is a Member of the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain and is a Lecturer at Chichester University and a writer for radio, TV, film and theatre.

Mike took up the post as Principal and Chief Executive in April 2015. He is a full member of the Board and Chief Accounting Officer. As such, Mike serves on all Board committees except the Audit committee. He has over 25 years’ experience in both Further and Higher Education.

Sue was formerly a member of the Havant Sixth Form College Board. She has a range of experience within the NHS, having originally trained in nursing and is now Deputy Head of Nursing and Midwifery Education at the Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust.

Tom was appointed to the Board in December 2015. As Executive Director for Havant and East Hampshire Councils, he takes the strategic lead on economic issues. Tom has extensive experience in a Board environment, supporting local authorities, reporting to private and public sector Boards and chairing a successful national charity.

Most recently appointed October 2015. Originally appointed from 7 October 1999 – nominated by local community body – Leigh Park Community Association, of which she was chief officer and secretary. Appointed to the Corporation as co-opted member 5 July 2007. Vice Chair and Director of The You Trust, a member of the executive and chair of the Quality and Performance Committee. Currently Regional Coordinator for the South East, senior consultant and trainer for Community Matters (The National Federation of Community Associations), associate consultant for the Development Trusts Association and trainer for the Directory of Social Change.

Gary was formerly a member of the Havant Sixth Form College Board. He has a very wide range of business experience and is Managing Director of Fasset Ltd.

Appointed July 2014. Chief Financial Officer and General Manager of Xyratex Limited from 2003 to 2014. Currently working at Schneider Electric. Over 25 years’ experience in both public and private businesses. A member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants. Appointed to Audit Committee in July 2014.

Richard joined the Board in 2015. He is a former teacher with a keen interest in education. He is also a qualified Accountant and was partner in his firm until his retirement last year.

Appointed in March 2016, David has a background in general management and marketing and sales. He has worked in a number of senior positions for a variety of companies, both nationally and internationally. Most recently, he has worked as a senior lecturer in Marketing at Portsmouth and Chichester Universities.

Louise was elected as Support Staff Governor in October 2015 for a four-year term of office.

Appointed as an independent Clerk to the Corporation with effect from August 2015. Pam has many years’ experience of clerking to Further Education Corporations. She also works as a consultant specialising in Human Resources, Employment Law and Corporate Governance mainly in the public and charities sector.

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