In order to secure the long-term future of further education for the communities it serves, the West Kent and Ashford College (WKAC) board asked the Government to take steps to place the college into education administration.
A petition for WKAC to be placed into education administration was filed at the High Court of Justice Business and Property Courts of England and Wales on 6 August 2019 and at a hearing on 16 August 2019, the judge ordered that Education Administrators be appointed with immediate effect.
WKAC Chair Martin Doel said: “While finances have been stabilised over recent months, the college is faced with exceptional outstanding liabilities and would be insolvent without external support.”
Mr Doel added: “Entering education administration provides the college with an effective means of implementing the recommendations in the Further Education Commissioner’s Options Review, which are aimed at obtaining a long-term sustainable solution for the existing provision offered by the college.”
The Education Administrators will work with the interim principal and his senior management team to enable the college to continue to operate as normal, with applications and enrolments being taken for courses starting in September 2019.
Staff continue to be employed as before, with no changes envisaged to staffing as a result of the process and student qualifications will be unaffected by the education administration.
Graham Morley, Interim Principal at the college, said: "We recognise that students, applicants and their families, alongside employers and other partners, may well be concerned about the impact that the education administration may have on them and their courses. We would like to reassure that this will not affect the day-to-day operations of the college. All courses will continue as normal and they should still apply to, and enrol with, us for this September."
Further information and FAQs on the education administration process can be found at: https://www.ashford.ac.uk/about-us/education-administration
Department for Education: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/further-education-bodies-insolvency-guidance
Association of Colleges: https://www.aoc.co.uk/news/the-new-college-insolvency-regime