National Professional Qualification
for Senior Leadership
The National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership (NPQSL) provides recognition of leadership development and professional achievement for senior school leaders. It has a flexible, modular structure that combines core modules with the freedom to specialise and to develop the candidate’s own professional areas of interest through the choice of an elective module.
Who is this for?
NPQSL is suitable for senior leaders with cross-school responsibilities, for example an experienced middle leader, a deputy head, a special educational needs co-ordinator (SENCO), an advanced skills teacher or a senior member of staff.
How to apply
Please complete the online registration form in the right hand bar to apply for a place.
You will be asked to upload the following as part of your registration:
- A signed declaration from your headteacher in which they agree to support you through the programme and confirm that the school will finance the cost of the course.
It will save time if you have this before you start your online registration.
You can view our programme metrics here.
What are the benefits?
- Facilitation and support from serving school leaders in outstanding schools
- Purpose built virtual learning environment enabled for mobiles and tablets
- Delivery at local venues
- Guaranteed support to pass final assessment
- Content contextualised for your locality and updated to reflect national developments and legislation
- Regular progress updates for mentors and headteachers
The qualification covers 6 content areas which set out what a leader should know or should be able to do, and 7 leadership behaviours which set out how the best leaders operate. The content areas have been embedded within 3 online courses, with the leadership behaviours explored during the face-to-face events.
Each day is facilitated by experienced serving school leaders.
|Event 1: Strategy &
|• Outcomes of the 360° diagnostic: Where am I now and where do I want to be?
• School improvement project planning
• Analysing school data and identifying strategies for improvement
• Establishing a vision and strategy in partnership
• Making change happen to improve the culture
|Event 2: Teaching
& Curriculum Excellence
|• Checking in on leadership learning and practice
• Establishing criteria for teaching and learning and communicating to others
• Evidencing the impact of teaching, learning and curriculum, and identifying strategies to reduce variation and improve
• Maximising the quality of teaching through the effective deployment and development of teachers and teaching
• Reflecting on learning and its application in your context
|Event 3: Managing
Resources & Risk
|• Team effectiveness: Motivating and influencing across the school
• Establishing partnerships that build capacity and improve performance
• Analysing leadership and management performance improvement strategies
• Exploiting opportunities to develop and grow the school curriculum
• Analysing value for money and designing a business case for improvement
Online Course Content
|Strategy & Improvement||Teaching & Curriculum Excellence||Managing Resources & Risk|
|Module 1||Context for change & strategic development||Context for change - teaching & learning reality||Financial efficiency & effectiveness|
|Module 2||Creating the vision & strategic improvement environment||Creating the learning culture for effective teaching and learning and curriculum opportunity||Accountability & governance
School-led partnership and impact
|Module 3||Establishing credible relationships & effective collaboration||Growing talent and quality momentum||Staffing recruitment, retention and performance|
|Module 4||Transforming the culture for improvement & impact||Transforming lives and opportunities for improvement and impact||Transforming schools through school-led
partnership and impact
Guideline Study Hours Breakdown
|360 leadership diagnostic||2|
|Peer challenge groups||N/A|
Leading an improvement project (5,000 words)
Candidates must lead an improvement project across their school, lasting at least two terms, to a) reduce variation in pupil progress and attainment and b) improve the efficiency and effectiveness of teaching. A written account of the project covering the design, implementation and evaluation must then be submitted for assessment.
Project scripts and supporting evidence are assessed in accordance with a mark scheme provided by the DfE and are subject to national moderation.
In order to achieve NPQSL candidates must:
- complete 3 online courses and associated core tasks
- engage with practice-based events
- pass final assessment within 18 months of starting the qualification
How is it delivered?
Candidates will usually complete the qualification within 12-18 months and benefit from our following learning models:
Our blended learning model
- three face-to-face training events
- three guided online courses working alongside peers
- regular online conferences to support and complement learning
- access to two 360° leadership skills diagnostics
- support from a nominated in-school mentor
- facilitation from serving school leaders in outstanding schools
- local and flexible access to high quality leadership training
- dedicated online tutor to support school improvement project planning
- mobile enabled virtual learning environment enabling flexible access to course resources and support community
- option to accrue 40 credits to contribute towards an MA in Educational Leadership with Chester University
The Online Elements of NPQSL:
Our distance learning model:
What does it cost?
|School Type||Fee payable|
|All state-maintained schools and academies in the UK||£1,250|
|International schools||Click here|
Costs for international candidates and schools can be found here