A Hackney college with around 9,000 students has announced a merger with a college in neighbouring Tower Hamlets to become a “single, larger and more sustainable college”, as residents are asked to weigh in on the plans.
Hackney Community College (HCC) in Falkirk Street, Hoxton, will merge with Tower Hamlets College, which has campuses in Poplar and Stepney, serving around 17,000 students together and with 800 members of staff.
A new board of governors for both colleges will be set up with an equal number of governors from each college plus a new independent chair.
HCC’s board of governors said the two colleges had “shared values and ambition” and that the deal would secure its future.
The merger follows protest by students and staff over government spending cuts to education.
A public consultation on the details of the merger has been launched following a consultation in November on the possibility of a merger.
Residents have been asked to suggest a new name for the governance structure of the unified college, though the two colleges themselves will keep their current names.
A joint statement by the colleges said the new name should “express the nature of the partnership, while ensuring both colleges’ existing names and brands are retained”.
The consultation will also consider the possible dissolving of the Corporation of Hackney Community College as a necessary technical step ahead of the merger taking place on 1 August for the start of the academic year in September.
Tom Mautner, chair of HCC’s board of governors, said: “Through this merger we will be in an excellent position to achieve our shared vision of maintaining high quality and wide-ranging further education in Hackney and Tower Hamlets, and beyond.
“The synergy between the two colleges is very strong, with shared values and ambition, and I am confident of a successful future for the newly-merged organisation.”
Martin Earwicker, chair of THC’s board of governors, added: “We are all very excited to be at this stage of the merger process. “Throughout, both corporations have been concerned with ensuring that we are able to continue to provide our respective local communities with access to high quality further education.
“This merger will enable us to continue to do so for many years.”
To take part in the consultation on dissolving the Corporation of Hackney Community College, or with suggestions for a name for the new governing structure, email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com before 21 March.
What do Hackney Citizen readers think the new name should be?
Post your suggestions below or email firstname.lastname@example.org./ 22 February, 2016