Forthcoming Changes to Senior Staff in Highland Council, including Care and Learning

The following statement was issued by Steve Barron, Chief Executive of the Highland Council, on 15 August 2018:

As you will know Bill Alexander and I will be retiring from the Council in the next few months.

In the circumstances of these changes at Executive Team level, I thought it would be helpful to provide you with an update as to the plans and interim management arrangements for these posts.

Chief Executive

 The Member panel will meet to agree a shortlist this week and the interviews are scheduled for 14th September. It is possible therefore that there will be a gap between my retirement date of 14th  November and the start date for my successor. If that is the case our Depute Chief Executive Derek Yule will cover the role.

Care and Learning

 The plan is for Senior Members to involve the new Chief Executive in early discussions about the recruitment of a successor Director of Care and Learning. That should be possible soon after selection of the Chief Executive and a recruitment process for the Director vacancy will be launched soon thereafter. As Bill’s retirement date is 31st October 2018 there will definitely be a gap and it has been agreed that Sandra Campbell, Head of Childrens’ Services will act up to cover the Director role and that Karen Ralston, Area Care and Learning Manager will act up to cover the Head of Service role. I am pleased to say that this arrangement has been agreed and supported by the Service Management team and I am grateful to C&L colleagues for their support. There are some other arrangements to be made at Service level including cover for Karen and allocation of the responsibilities of Chief Social Work Officer.

In addition our Head of Education has given notice of his intention to retire in January 2019 and that gives us time to advertise internally with the intention of making a secondment into this role for around 12 months. This fixed term secondment is intended to allow the new Director to take a view on the responsibilities and priorities of this post.

Please be assured that these arrangements are intended to build on our strengths and to provide continuity and confidence to those affected during a time of change.

Kind Regards

Steve Barron

Chief Executive

The Highland Council

Tel 01463 702837

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