College chief executive reveals plans to retire

Sheffield College’s chief executive Heather MacDonald has announced she is to retire at the end of the current academic year.

The 60-year-old’s decision comes as the college faces a period of unrest with 75 jobs under threat and futher staff cuts of £3.7 million are being sought.

Lecturers are currently voting on whether to take strike action in the new year.

Mrs MacDonald has been at the helm of the college for more than six years and will continue in post until summer 2015, or when a successor is appointed.

She said: “Sheffield is a fantastic city, with a palpable sense of civic pride.

“I am proud to have led an organisation that gives so much to the city, changing lives and shaping the success of our students, businesses and communities.

“I am confident the college will go from strength to strength as it positions itself to play a greater role delivering skills solutions.

“I would like to thank all my colleagues for their support during the last six years, and reaffirm my commitment to leading the college until a successor is appointed.”

During her tenure, the college has progressed from being assessed as satisfactory by the education watchdog Ofsted to being graded as ‘good’.

However, it is currently seeking to cope with a £4 million Government funding cut over two years, while moving to become more self-sufficient through income generation schemes.

Richard Wright, chairman of the college’s governing body, said: “Heather’s ambition, drive and commitment are qualities I greatly admire and demonstrate why the college has come so far.

“I want to give Heather our tremendous thanks and wish her all the very best.”