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Principal proud of Selby College’s successes as he plans departure

Monday 14 June 2021

Principal and Chief Executive Phil Sayles has announced he will be moving on from Selby College at the end of 2021 to take up an equivalent role at Bournemouth and Poole College on the south coast.

During his period leading the College, it has become a partner in the Yorkshire and Humberside Institute of Technology, bringing over £600,000 of investment, and developed key training partnerships with industrial giants Siemens Mobility and Drax Power.

The fantastic ‘university-style’ campus, which hosts A Level, technical and degree education has seen a wide range of other changes and investments. In 2022, the College will add the new ‘T-Level’ qualifications to its offer and is bidding for more investment.

In 2020, Selby College achieved a 100% pass rate for both its A Level and Vocational programmes. The College also achieved a score of 86% for Overall Student Satisfaction in the National Student Survey for its Higher Education courses – above the national average of 82%.

The College also came top in Yorkshire and joint 5th out of 172 Further Education Colleges across England, in a college-sector measure of student satisfaction and progression, and was in the top 10% of Further Education Colleges nationally for its Apprenticeship provision, in 2019. In the same year, the College also won a Silver Award in the BTEC Awards for its outstanding dedication and commitment in providing BTEC subjects.

Phil led the College through the Covid-19 pandemic, ensuring that students were able to successfully continue their studies and have the resources to complete their courses during challenging times. Throughout this period, he put huge effort into constant communication with students, staff and other stakeholders of the College. He oversaw the transition to successful ‘lockdown’ online learning and the safe return of staff and students to campus, in line with Covid-19 safety guidelines.

“Selby and the surrounding areas have a fantastic College, filled by skilled, dedicated and fantastic staff who work very hard for the success of students. The last 18 months during the pandemic has seen them shine through even more. I’m also very proud of what our students achieve, moving into work, further study or onto some great universities. Our work doing more to support businesses across the region with the skills they need has been important, and is something which will grow and continue.”

“Furthering the prospects of our students, employers and communities has always been my biggest priority during my time at the College and will continue until the moment I walk out of the door for the final time in December. I will miss many people and aspects of work in Selby, and I am lucky to have worked in a lovely part of the country and to be moving to another.”

Richard Stiff, Chair of the Corporation at Selby College said: “Phil has played an instrumental role in the College’s success recently. He has applied his passion, dedication, knowledge and valued experience to make a significant impact on the College’s business support functions, systems and services. More importantly, he has led the College very effectively through the most challenging of times we have seen in both the education sector and personally, providing constant and effective leadership for both staff and students. We are grateful for his strong leadership, commitment and service to the College. He will be missed by his colleagues, students and stakeholders at the College and we wish him the best of luck in his new role.”