Consultation receives overwhelming support for plans to secure the future of NCATI



A public consultation (published 24 February 2021) reveals overwhelming support for plans that will secure the future of the National College for Advanced Transport and Infrastructure.

Over 90% of responses received backed the proposals which aim to create a highly successful, financially sustainable and inclusive National College that provides high quality education and training to meet the needs of learners, sectoral partners and local communities and supports local, regional and national economic growth.

Contributions from the rail industry and education sector show significant support for the plans that will bring the new NCATI into the University of Birmingham group. Some responses highlighted the opportunities for joint working presented by the collaboration, as well as welcoming the link into the University’s expertise in railway research and education.

Professor Tim Jones, Provost and Vice-Principal at the University of Birmingham, said: “The hugely positive response to the consultation demonstrates overwhelming support for our plans to bring NCATI into the University group and secure its future as an essential skills provider to the rail and transport industries. This means we can proceed with confidence to the next step in securing a successful future for NCATI.”

Sue Dare MBE, Interim Chief Executive of NCATI, added: “I would like to thank everyone who took time to respond to our consultation. We had an overwhelmingly positive response from stakeholders, with over 90% of respondents in support of the collaboration.

“The collaboration will enable NCATI to deliver a broader range of high-quality learning opportunities that will benefit the industry we serve, allowing learners to develop the skills needed in the sector, while working to become a financially stable college.”

NCATI will produce generations of highly skilled professionals to lead the UK’s future rail, transport and infrastructure workforce. It will provide a through-life learning opportunity supported by a full suite of railway, transport and broader infrastructure qualifications and competencies (Level 2 to Level 7) that meet national needs.

Chair of Network Rail, Sir Peter Hendy said: “We are delighted to see the plans for the new National College taking shape. We are looking forward to working collaboratively with NCATI and supporting the College and its students in building FE provision that puts employability at the centre of delivery and curriculum development. The national hub and spoke model will increase training capacity across the rail industry and allow Network Rail, and its suppliers, to access local pools of skilled individuals.”

Neil Hayward, HS2 Ltd HR Director and National College Board Member, said: “The new National College will play a crucial role in upskilling students for the breadth of careers that HS2 and other major infrastructure and rail engineering projects are creating. With construction well underway on HS2 between London and Birmingham, and the recent approval of the extension of the line to Crewe, the number of opportunities for skilled individuals is increasing daily. We look forward to working collaboratively with NCATI to ensure HS2 fulfils its aim of leaving a lasting legacy in skills and engineering in the UK.”

The success of the consultation means the proposals can now move to the final approval stages. If given the go-ahead, the existing College will dissolve and all assets, rights and liabilities will transfer to a brand new further education college, which will be part of the University of Birmingham family.

There will be no immediate changes for staff or learners at the College. Current courses will continue, and prospective learners should apply for courses in the normal way. Recruitment is underway for a new Principal who will provide inspirational leadership and help the College become a success.

Further information

The full consultation report can be found here

The Consultation Process

The public consultation was launched on 19 December 2020 and ran until 29 January 2021 to allow for the Christmas period. It was advertised in regional and national media, and directly to key stakeholders. A total of 74 responses were received; 91 per cent of which were positive about the proposals.

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23 March 2021

Draft resolution to dissolve the Corporation

The Corporation of The National College for Advanced Transport and Infrastructure is publishing the draft resolution, below, which it intends to pass at a Corporation meeting to be held on 28th April 2021, in accordance with its Articles of Government and best practice in the Further Education sector:

IT WAS UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED that:

following:

  • publication of the outcome of a statutory consultation exercise undertaken by the Corporation (as required under the Further Education Corporations (Publications of Proposals) (England) Regulations 2012);
  • publication of the draft resolution of the Corporation to dissolve and provide for the transfer of its property, rights and liabilities (as required under Article 26(2) of the Instrument and Articles); and
  • the passing, by the Directors of National College for Advanced Transport and Infrastructure Limited (a wholly owned subsidiary of the University of Birmingham), of a resolution to acquire the property, rights and liabilities of the Corporation, such acquisition to take place at 23.59 on 29th April 2021;

The Corporation of The National College for Advanced Transport and Infrastructure hereby RESOLVES to merge with National College for Advanced Transport and Infrastructure Limited, with the Corporation of The National College for Advanced Transport and Infrastructure dissolving at 23.59 on 29th April 2021 and its property, rights and liabilities transferring immediately before that time to National College for Advanced Transport and Infrastructure Limited in accordance with sections 27A and 27B of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992.