A new principal has been appointed to run Peterborough’s £12 million University Technical College.
Steve Warburton, who has previously held senior positions at city schools and colleges, has been chosen to run the Greater Peterborough University Technical College with immediate effect.
Mr Warburton has been interim principal since late last year after former principal designate, Dr Ian McMurdo, stepped down to focus on his consultancy work.
The college, in Park Crescent, is due to open in September but still needs Department of Education approval that it has a sufficient number of students.
Mr Warburton said: “We need a minimum of 114 students by the end of March and are four students short of the target. I am confident we will reach the target.
He added: “I feel very privileged to have seen the project develop to the state-of-the-art building and technical learning environment it is now.
I’m delighted to be appointed as principal to lead the GPUTC as we embark on this next exciting phase.Steve Warburton, principal
There will be an open day at the UTC on February 4 from 6pm to 8pm. The college is aimed at students aged 14-years-old starting GCSEs and 16-year-olds beginning A levels.
Mr Warburton said: “GPUTC has attracted high-calibre students from 20 different local schools, drawn by its technical focus, specialised resources, vibrant learning environment and unparalleled links with employers from the engineering and construction sectors.
“Recognition of the value of fusing technical learning with academic qualifications in such an amazing environment has been a significant factor in convincing our sponsors to guarantee job interviews to all UTC graduates.
“Many parents acknowledge the unique nature of our offer and have stressed how they wish such a terrific opportunity had been available for them.
He added: “Many bright, enthusiastic students have come through the doors to secure their place for 2016 – with some looking for 2017.
“So I’m delighted to be appointed as principal to lead the GPUTC as we embark on this next exciting phase.”
Mr Warburton has been involved in the GPUTC project for the last year.
He brings with him more than 30 years of senior leadership and teaching experience.
As headteacher of Hereward Community College he brought about changes to transform the college’s performance from being in ‘special measures’ to enabling 65 per cent of its students to achieve five or more A*-C grades.
He was previously director of education at Thomas Deacon Academy and assistant principal and director of Sixth Form at Sawtry Community College as well as holding other leadership and teaching posts in the area.
Chair of governors and Anglian Water’s head of learning and development, Phil Brown, who chaired the selection panel, said: “Steve has been instrumental in launching the GPUTC and brings a wealth of experience both in education and locally with employers, which will make the GPUTC a leading bridge to work or further education for students.”
The college specialises in engineering, construction, architecture and design and combines technical qualifications with GCSEs and A Levels.