A merger between East Kent College and Canterbury College is finally complete with the launch of the EKC Group today (February 1).
The two colleges started working in partnership in 2016 and the Governing Bodies agreed to merger in principle in October of that year
A statutory consultation over the dissolution of the Canterbury College Corporation took place last March.
The new East Kent Colleges Group covers Canterbury, Dover, Shepway, Swale and Thanet.
The new organisation creates the seventh biggest Further Education (FE) college group in the UK, with a turnover of approximately £55million, more than 1,000 staff and 15,000 students.
Graham Razey, Group Principal and Chief Executive of the EKC Group, said: “This merger will enable our colleges to deliver the finest technical and vocational education across the whole of East Kent. It’s great news for the many students we teach who now have unparalleled flexibility to progress through our range of provision, as well as the communities we serve which I hope will benefit from the skills training and services we deliver.
“I’m pleased to announce that now we have merged, our new Strategic Plan has also been launched. This important document sets out our vision for a better technical education system in East Kent which will help unlock prosperity for all of our communities in the years to come.”
The group’s new chair, Charles Buchanan, said: “It fills me with real pride that after a huge amount of hard work, the two colleges have now merged to form this new Group. I would like to thank senior leaders, and all of the colleges’ staff, for their hard work to make this a reality.
“There’s no doubt it has not been easy, but it’s illustrative of the fortitude and character of those working through our colleges that we have now become the EKC Group, and it makes me incredibly excited for the future of technical education in the South East.”
The group has unveiled its new branding and a corporate website which can be found at www.ekcgroup.ac.uk