Senior Leadership

For school leaders who are, or are aspiring to be, a senior leader with cross-school responsibilities.

Delivery Partner

Course Overview

Registration dateOctober-January. Participants can register with the Department for Education from October and will be prompted to complete a short application with UCL
Start dateFebruary
Course length18 months
AccreditationUCL/Department for Education (DfE)
FeesState School participants will receive sponsorship from DfE. The fee for self-funded or Independent School participants is £1055. Please note that anyone receiving DfE sponsorship will not be permitted to withdraw and then restart the same NPQ.

Course Curriculum

This 18-month course will help staff gain confidence and develop skills in:

  • leadership knowledge and the specialist expertise needed to tackle school improvement priorities
  • supporting the development of a positive, predictable and safe environment for pupils
  • contributing to your school’s strategic direction and establishing an environment for pupil success
  • helping ensure staff feel supported and valued


Teachers will get to train alongside peers with similar responsibilities. The course content focuses on the key challenges teachers face in their role.

Teachers and education experts designed this course to fit around busy teaching timetables. There’s no project work and minimal time out of school required.

What you'll learn

This course covers themes including:

  • School Culture – you will strengthen your school culture by contributing to its strategic direction, managing resources and fulfilling the statutory duties to enable all pupils and teachers to thrive and succeed.
  • Teaching – you will learn how to lead teachers at all levels in your school to develop their pedagogical knowledge and classroom skills to enable the best outcomes for all children and young people, no matter what their starting point is.
  • Curriculum and Assessment – you will learn how to support and improve high-quality teaching, learning and assessment by ensuring high-level support, planning, and policy development for the teachers in your school.
  • Behaviour and Support – you will be able to contribute and implement the development of good models of behaviour and learning across the whole school community, including liaising with and training key stakeholders to ensure a safe learning environment for all.
  • Implementation – you will learn how to implement change successfully within your context by understanding the stages of implementation and applying them with the support of your facilitators and colleagues.

How you'll learn

We offer a combination of online sessions with three face-to-face conferences in a central UK location. Our online sessions are carefully facilitated to allow a significant portion of time in Peer Learning Groups, incorporating plenty of discussion, reflection and expert input. For our face-to-face conferences, participants are welcomed at one of our centrally located campuses and these events include a full day of hospitality, an expert guest speaker and valuable networking opportunities.

“Really clear guidance and I feel like it related a lot to what I have been reading. I particularly enjoyed our guest speaker – I wrote copious notes and came away with ideas that I can immediately action.”

A recent participant


Completion of the programme and maintaining an average of at least 90% engagement across the course is required for success. Participants will also be asked to develop and present an implementation plan which reflects their learning and complete a case study response (approx.2500 words) during an 8-day window at the end of the programme.


If you’d like to enrol on the Leading Teaching NPQ with us, in the first instance, you should register with the Department for Education on the NPQ Registration Services area. You will need to provide your Teacher Reference Number (TRN).

Guidance on acquiring a TRN, can be found on the website.

You will then need to apply directly with UCL. Application details can be found here.

Your questions answered

Louisa Horner is CATS Global Schools’ Learning & Development Lead. She has completed her own NPQ in Senior Leadership and leads the facilitation of NPQs for CATS Global Schools, so can share insight into the learning experience and time commitments. Here she answers your most frequently asked questions.

NPQs on offer

Leading Teacher Development

For teachers who have, or are aspiring to have, responsibilities for leading the development of other teachers, curriculum leads, mentors or trainees in their school.

Senior Leadership

For school leaders who are or are aspiring to be a senior leader with cross-school responsibilities


For school leaders who are, or are aspiring to be, a headteacher or head of school with responsibility for leading a school.