Principal Nick Spenceley announces decision to retire

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Principal -nick -spenceley -to -retireSeevic College Principal Nick Spenceley has announced his decision to retire at the end of the current academic year for health reasons.

Mr Spenceley was diagnosed with stage 3 prostate cancer shortly before commencing his role at the College in January 2013.

Prompt surgery followed by a rapid recovery enabled Mr Spenceley to take up his duties just one week late.

However, two further cancer-related health scares in the last 12 months have seen him decide to re-assess his options for the future.

He announced his decision to staff on Tuesday 9 February.

Mr Spenceley said: “I am proud that my cancer did not impact on my work at Seevic.  Apart from the handful who were told at the time, nobody even guessed that I had been ill until I disclosed it during fundraising for “Movember” at the end of 2013. I have now reached the age of 60 and I am still well but, given my recent health scares, I have taken the decision to enjoy my retirement and my family.

“Looking back on what will be three and a half years at the College by the time I depart, I am pleased that I have been able to re-focus the College on its essential mission: to provide young learners with a wide range of vocational and academic options while pursuing the best possible grades and progression opportunities. I am also proud that great strides have been taken towards placing Seevic at the very heart of our community.

"Great strides have been taken towards placing Seevic at the very heart of our community"

“The College has attracted high numbers of students in recent years despite facing challenges such as new local sixth-forms and a smaller cohort of year eleven students in south Essex to recruit from. It has also discovered whole new areas of growth in Apprenticeships and Foundation Learning.  Seevic is in a strong financial position for the coming years and there is an exciting future ahead.

“I would like to offer my sincere thanks to all the staff at the College who have embraced a new culture under my leadership. I continue to see improvements in teaching and learning at Seevic as we strive towards further Ofsted recognition.”

Chair of Governors Richard Kirkham said:  “Under Nick’s leadership the College has improved teaching, learning and outcomes for students, while he has also successfully introduced a new culture and mindset. He leaves with the College in a healthy financial position and with exciting growth opportunities ahead. On behalf of the Governing Body I would like to thank Nick for all his hard work and wish him and his family a very long and happy retirement.”

After the news of his retirement was announced Mr Spenceley received a high volume of messages of thanks and support from schools, other colleges, local authorities plus current and former colleagues.

“The reaction has taken me completely by surprise, it wasn’t something I expected at all. I am incredibly grateful, and a little humbled, by all the kinds words of support I have received,” he added.

After graduating from Cambridge University, where he read English, Mr Spenceley’s career has seen him work at colleges across Essex and Hertfordshire.

Before joining Seevic, he spent seven years at Harlow College where he served as Deputy Principal. He lives with his wife Paula in Thurrock. 

"There is an exciting future ahead"

Mr Spenceley’s last day of service at the College will be 29 July. A new Principal will be appointed during March.

The College has received a high number of applications from young people for courses starting in September 2016.

To find out more about courses starting in September 2016 ring 01268 882 666 or email


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