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Westmorland and Furness Council is a rare thing, a brand-new council. This means a huge opportunity to create a fresh vision for our communities and residents, and to work with you to deliver that vision.

Our vision for Westmorland and Furness is simple, we want our area to be a great place to live work and thrive.

Following successful appointments to our Senior Leadership Team, including Chief Executive, we are now looking to recruit a talented, innovative, and inspirational professional to the post of Assistant Director of Education and Inclusion.

About Westmorland and Furness Council 

The Government has made the decision to create two brand new councils for Cumbria - Cumberland Council and Westmorland and Furness Council. Westmorland and Furness Council will comprise of the area covered by Barrow-in-Furness, Eden and South Lakeland districts.

Key to this decision was the business case that committed us to:

  • Put our customers and communities first, to be at the very heart of everything we do.
  • Delivering better outcomes for our customers and communities, enhancing their life opportunities.
  • Deliver excellent services and undertake transformation and change that will ensure services are better and more cost-effective in the future.
  • Create organisations that are flexible and agile and enable us to respond to change and be more adaptable to our customer needs in the future.
  • Create opportunities for our staff.
  • Work in partnership to deliver better outcomes for all.
  • Create more financially balanced and sustainable Council.

The role of the new council is to create the conditions for Cumbria's diverse people and places to thrive. Delivering lasting transformation that improves lives, and in that we have a proven and proud track record of achievement.

We will only be able to do this through the support of an effective management structure.

We now have a unique, once-in-a-generation opportunity, to shape public services for the better - building on the best and transforming services for the future.

We want to:

  • Look positively to the future and build on the best.
  • Feel confident about the future.
  • Embrace and understand that this change presents real opportunities.

Salary: £93,072 - £103,422

Westmorland and Furness Council is a brand-new unitary council formed on 1 April 2023, with an ambition for sustainable and inclusive growth and a commitment to making Westmorland and Furness a great place to live, work and thrive.

Having completed the appointments of our Chief Executive and Directors we are now looking for an Assistant Director of Education and Inclusion to join our Senior Leadership Team. Reporting to our new Director of Children's Services, you'll be a key member of the directorate leadership team and will work in close partnership with all our schools, across our varied communities, to ensure a coherent approach to inclusion and access across settings. You'll also lead the drive across all schools and settings for improved standards and attainment, especially for vulnerable learners.

Education and Learning is key to achieving our ambitions for our communities, ensuring our children and young people can reach their full potential through good schools, effective SEND, early years and post 16 provision. Most of our schools are Good or outstanding, but in common with most councils, we face a challenge around our High Needs Block and we are looking to develop services in innovative and creative ways to meet the needs of our vulnerable children and young people.

You will come with not only a deep understanding but also a passion for schools and school improvement that will enable you to further develop and nurture the close working relationships we already have with our schools and communities. An engaging and collaborative leader you will inspire our staff and partners to deliver excellent and inclusive education services that make a difference to residents and communities of Westmorland and Furness.

Apply online for Assistant Director of Education and Inclusion

If you would like an informal conversation about this exciting new role, please contact our advising consultants at Penna: 

  • Nick Raper on 07715 690463
  • Kelly Ridley on 07709 512415.

Closing Date: 11 September

Final Interview: 28 September

Population: 225,400 persons; a decrease of 0.4% over the last decade. 15.6% of the population are aged 0-15 years (lower than the national average of 19.2%), while 26.3% of the population are aged over 65 years (higher than the national average of 18.5%).

By 2028 the population of Westmorland and Furness is projected to increase (+1.1% vs. England +5%) and become older; with numbers of 0-15 and 16-64 year olds projected to decrease by 5.5% and 3.5% respectively (England -1.6% and +2.7%), while numbers of people aged 65+ are set to increase by 15.5% (England +19.6%).

There are 114,000 jobs at workplaces in Westmorland and Furness.

The public administration, education and health sector accounts for the greatest proportion (24%), followed by wholesale and retail (18%), manufacturing (15%) and accommodation & food services (14%). The median annual household income in Westmorland and Furness is estimated to be £34,638; lower than the national average ( £37,436). The unemployment rate is below the national average (2.3% vs. 4.0%). 33.9% of residents in Westmorland and Furness are estimated to be qualified to level 4 or higher, below the national average (43.5%); this is in part due to the sector and occupational profile of employment in the area.

20% of residents in Westmorland and Furness report their day-to-day activities are limited because of an illness or disability, higher than the national average (18%). Public Health England (PHE) report that Westmorland and Furness has worse rates than the national average in relation to emergency hospital admissions for heart attack, hospital stays for self-harm and deaths from stroke. However, Westmorland and Furness performs better than the national average in relation to: hospital admissions for all causes; emergency hospital admissions for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease; incidence of cancer; deaths from all causes; deaths from cancer; deaths from circulatory disease in under 75s; deaths from respiratory diseases; and deaths from causes considered preventable in under 75s.

15% of children in Westmorland and Furness live in relative low-income families. While this is lower than the national average (18.7%), there are some wards where levels of child poverty are much higher than the national average; the proportion of children in relative low-income families is more than one and a half times the national average in the wards of Ravenstonedale, Central, Hindpool, Barrow Island and Warcop. 12 communities (LSOAs) in Westmorland and Furness fall within the 10% most deprived of areas in England; these communities are all located within Barrow-in-Furness. It is generally in these deprived areas that unemployment and crime rates are higher, while household incomes and educational attainment are lower and health outcomes can be poor. Inversely, Westmorland and Furness has six LSOAs that are classified as being in the 10% least deprived of LSOAs nationally; these LSOAs are all located in South Lakeland.

Map plotting deprivation across Cumbria