‘In­spir­ing’ prin­ci­pal to leave top class college

Rochdale Observer - - FRONT PAGE - Da­mon.wilkin­son@men­media.co.uk @Da­monWilkin­son6

ROCHDALE Sixth Form College prin­ci­pal Ju­lian Ap­p­le­yard is to step down next year.

Mr Ap­p­le­yard over­saw the open­ing of the college in 2010 and has been the driv­ing force be­hind it be­com­ing one of the most suc­cess­ful sixth forms in the coun­try.

He is leav­ing to take up a role in his home town as CEO of the Pon­te­fract Academies Trust.

Mr Ap­p­le­yard said, “It has been an enor­mous priv­i­lege to have led Rochdale Sixth Form College.

“It seems a long time since 2009 when I walked on to what was only a build­ing site back then.

“It has been a tremen­dous eight years and my de­ci­sion to move on a very dif­fi­cult one for me as I have a real affin­ity for the bor­ough.

“The de­vel­op­ment of the college from a hole in the ground to the rep­u­ta­tion the college has na­tion­ally and lo­cally makes me im­mensely proud.”

Dame Pam Coward, Chair of the Trust Board said, “It is with a mix of very deep sad­ness and ex­treme grat­i­tude that the Board of Trustees an­nounces Ju­lian’s de­par­ture.

“The Board is thank­ful for his eight years of ser­vice and in­spi­ra­tional lead­er­ship. Since 2009, as Found­ing Prin­ci­pal of Rochdale Sixth Form College, and more re­cently as the Ex­ec­u­tive Prin­ci­pal, the College has en­joyed enor­mous suc­cess, and he has led a sim­ply re­mark­able trans­for­ma­tion in turn­around for post 16 achieve­ment in the Bor­ough.

“While we will miss him, we wish him the best of luck in his new role as the CEO of the Pon­te­fract Academies Trust. We want to thank him for the 8 years of ded­i­cated ser­vice.”

Since open­ing the college has gained a glow­ing rep­u­ta­tion. It was the only in­sti­tu­tion to have gone from be­ing a new build to gain­ing an out­stand­ing Of­sted grade at the first in­spec­tion.

Over the last four years the college also has topped the Depart­ment for Ed­u­ca­tion per­for­mance ta­bles for A-level progress.

Mr Ap­p­le­yard, awarded the OBE for ser­vices to ed­u­ca­tion in the 2016 Queen’s Birth­day Hon­ours List, paid trib­ute to his staff adding: “I am for­tu­nate to have worked with re­mark­able col­leagues who are so com­mit­ted to im­prov­ing the life chances of young peo­ple in the bor­ough.

“The college suc­cess story is a won­der­ful nar­ra­tive and I have no doubt the college will go on to even more suc­cess in the fu­ture.”

Mr Ap­p­le­yard, who will stand down in Fe­bru­ary, will be re­placed by Tom Fay, cur­rent head of college.

Dame Pam added: “The board have ev­ery con­fi­dence in Tom and he has a grow­ing rep­u­ta­tion for his teach­ing and learn­ing work.

“Fore­most in the mind of the board is to safe­guard our ex­cel­lent stan­dards and the rep­u­ta­tion of the college.

“This is our pri­or­ity whilst pre­serv­ing the cul­ture and sta­bil­ity of what is a highly ef­fec­tive or­gan­i­sa­tion.”

●●Ju­lian Ap­p­le­yard (from left) in­spect­ing build­ing works as the college took shape, welcoming Lord Michael Grade and cel­e­brat­ing re­ceiv­ing his OBE

●●Ju­lian Ap­p­le­yard (in­set) is step­ping down af­ter eight years as prin­ci­pal of Rochdale Sixth Form College

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