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Stuck in the middle with you

In recent years, middle-management has been a growing section of the FE workforce. But lecturers who make the step up often find that they struggle to adapt because cash-strapped colleges can’t provide CPD. So how can the sector nurture leaders of tomorrow? George Ryan reports on a new initiative aiming to fire up the sector’s ‘engine room’ so that these staff rise right to the top

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At the age of 26, Nikki Yoxall got a promotion at her college. All of a sudden, she found herself in the role of learning technology manager, responsible for a team of 40 lecturers and a multi-million-pound budget.

“I had imposter syndrome,” she recalls. “I asked myself, ‘Should I really be doing this job?’ I had my direct reports telling me about [their] children who were older than me. It is also challenging to have a difficult conversation with someone who is the same age as your mum.”

Now 32, Yoxall has progressed to a senior leadership role as director of learning and teaching at Moray ...

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