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Professional Development and Training

National Professional Qualifications (NPQs)

What are the latest reforms to NPQs?

Reformed National Professional Qualifications (NPQs)

From September 2021, a reformed suite of national professional qualifications (NPQs) will be available for teachers and leaders who want to develop their knowledge and skills in school leadership and specialist areas of teaching practice.

The three existing NPQs in Senior Leadership, Headship and Executive Leadership have been refreshed, ensuring that they are underpinned by the latest evidence. The existing Middle Leadership NPQ has also been replaced with three new specialist NPQs to best address the broad range of responsibilities of current and aspiring middle leaders. These specialist areas cover:

The NPQ qualifications are in important aspect of the government's golden thread of teacher and leader development:

 

SFET Teaching School Hub is delighted to announce delivery of the new specialist NPQs and reformed suite of leadership NPQs in partnership with STSN and Teach First. This partnership brings together the best local knowledge and context with the experience and programmes of Teach First.

                              

All NPQs are taught through a blended balance of online individual learning, online seminars and face-to-face meetings and a simplified end-of-course assessment. There are two cohorts annually, starting in Autumn and Spring.

The NPQ Briefing for School Leaders was recorded before the DfE's announcement on full funding (12/10/21). All information is correct except for costs; teachers and leaders employed in state funded schools and state funded organisations that offer 16-19 places in England are now able to access fully funded NPQs (see funding section below). 

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Our NPQs support teachers and leaders who want to take the next step on their leadership journey and are motivated to make a difference in their school. Participants will develop core knowledge and skills to prepare them for the long term, as well as gaining the tools, examples and practice to start making a positive impact in their school straight away. 

Our programmes are underpinned by some key factors:

  •  High-quality, evidence-led training designed by experts
  •  Strengthening leadership and culture in your school
  •  Broadening and deepening expertise in your specialist area
  •  Flexible training that fits around your schedule and prior knowledge
  •  Free one-to-one support and coaching
  •  Joining a passionate network striving for educational equality

Funding for NPQs

As part of the government’s long-term education recovery plan, £184 million of new funding for NPQs was announced on 2 June 2021 to be spent over the course of this parliament. 

Teachers and leaders employed in state funded schools and state funded organisations that offer 16-19 places in England will be able to access fully funded NPQs from Autumn 2021, to support teachers and pupils following the disruption to learning faced as a result of COVID-19. 

Access to funding remains conditional on successful validation of participants’ registration information against Teaching Regulation Agency records, so you must ensure that the information supplied to your NPQ provider matches your teacher record. You can check and update your record via the Teaching Regulation Agency’ Teacher Self-Service Portal

If you are not eligible for scholarship funding, you can still undertake an NPQ and should contact your local teaching school hub, lead provider or other delivery partners directly. 

NPQ Specialist Qualifications (NEW - replacing NPQML)

The three new specialist NPQs replace the current NPQML. Please click on each of the images below to view the national framework for each qualification.

NPQLBC: Leading Behaviour and Culture

This is for teachers who have, or are aspiring to have, responsibilities for leading behaviour and/or supporting pupil wellbeing in their school allowing you to broaden and deepen expertise in your specialist area and create a culture in which staff and pupils thrive.

NPQLT: Leading Teaching               

This offers teachers who have, or are aspiring to have, responsibilities for leading teaching in a subject, year group, key stage or phase allowing them to build expertise in their specialist area.

NPQLTD: Leading Teacher Development

 The qualification is for teachers who have, or are aspiring to have, responsibilities for leading the development of other teachers in their school. They may have responsibilities for the development of all teachers across a school or specifically trainees or teachers who are early in their career.

Delivery

All NPQs are taught through a blended balance of online individual learning, online seminars and face-to-face meetings and a simplified end-of-course assessment. There are two cohorts annually, starting in Autumn (November) and Spring (February). These programmes last for 12 months.

Assessment

The assessment process has been refreshed to reduce the workload burden on teachers while still providing an opportunity for them to apply their knowledge.

To pass an NPQ, teachers will need to engage with at least 90% of the course and complete a final assessment.

Costs

Teachers and leaders employed in state funded schools and state funded organisations that offer 16-19 places in England will be able to access fully funded NPQs from Autumn 2021, to support teachers and pupils following the disruption to learning faced as a result of COVID-19. For more information, see the funding section above. 

Please register your interest by emailing npq@stsn.co.uk or click here.

NPQSL

NPQSL: Senior Leadership

NPQSL is designed for school leaders who are, or are aspiring to be, a senior leader with cross-school responsibilities. It’s ideal for those looking to progress into senior leadership and beyond and builds foundational knowledge to rapidly progress your school or trust’s key improvement priorities, all the while creating and embedding a culture that allows your staff and pupils to thrive.

Delivery

All NPQs are taught through a blended balance of online individual learning, online seminars and face-to-face meetings and a simplified end-of-course assessment. There are two cohorts annually, starting in Autumn (November) and Spring (February).

This programme last for 18 months.

Assessment

The assessment process has been refreshed to reduce the workload burden on teachers while still providing an opportunity for them to apply their knowledge.

To pass an NPQ, teachers will need to engage with at least 90% of the course and complete a final assessment.

Costs

Teachers and leaders employed in state funded schools and state funded organisations that offer 16-19 places in England will be able to access fully funded NPQs from Autumn 2021, to support teachers and pupils following the disruption to learning faced as a result of COVID-19. For more information, see the funding section above. 

Please register your interest by emailing npq@stsn.co.uk or click here.

NPQH

NPQH: Headship (including a new programme of support for newly appointed Headteachers)

NPQH is for school leaders who are, or are aspiring to be, a headteacher or head of school with responsibility for leading a school. With this 18-month+ programme participants will deliver meaningful change in their schools and join a network of like-minded leaders. NPQH is taught through a blended balance of online individual learning, online seminars and face-to-face meetings and a simplified end-of-course assessment. There are two cohorts annually, starting in November and February.

Delivery

All NPQs are taught through a blended balance of online individual learning, online seminars and face-to-face meetings and a simplified end-of-course assessment. There are two cohorts annually, starting in Autumn (November) and Spring (February).

This programme last for 18 months.

We have an additional support offer for colleagues new to Headship within the NPQH programme. This slightly longer course provides access to free one-to-one support and coaching as well as ongoing support for the first year of headship. Eligibility criteria for this additional support offer:

  • Working in the first 24 months of headship
  • Employed by a state funded school in England (upon starting the training)
  • Have either completed an NPQH before taking up your first post or are currently taking the NPQH
  • Have not withdrawn from the additional support programme previously

Assessment

The assessment process has been refreshed to reduce the workload burden on teachers while still providing an opportunity for them to apply their knowledge.

To pass an NPQ, teachers will need to engage with at least 90% of the course and complete a final assessment.

Costs

Teachers and leaders employed in state funded schools and state funded organisations that offer 16-19 places in England will be able to access fully funded NPQs from Autumn 2021, to support teachers and pupils following the disruption to learning faced as a result of COVID-19. For more information, see the funding section above. 

Please register your interest by emailing npq@stsn.co.uk or click here.

Additional support offer for the NPQ in Headship

Alongside the reformed suite of NPQs, the department is introducing an additional support offer for new headteachers from autumn 2021. This is a targeted support package for teachers new to the role of headship. The additional support offer is available to those who meet the following criteria: 

  • have completed an NPQH 

  • are studying for an NPQH 

  • are about to start an NPQH 

Full scholarship funding for the additional support offer, meaning no cost to the participant, is available for those who meet the following criteria: 

  • work in a state-funded school or state funded organisation that offer 16-19 places in England upon starting the training 

  • are in their first 24 months of headship 

  • have not withdrawn from the additional support programme previously 
     

The additional support offer provides structured, unassessed face-to-face support based on the best available evidence about what makes an effective headteacher. The way in which the additional support offer is delivered may vary between providers, but could include a combination of group coaching, one-to-one support discussions and peer network support. You can contact your local teaching school hub, lead provider or other delivery partner to find out more. 

In addition to the reformed suite of NPQs, the department is introducing an additional support offer for new headteachers from autumn 2021. This is a targeted support package for teachers new to the role of headship.

NPQEL

NPQEL: Executive Leadership

The Executive Leadership programme is designed for school leaders who are, or are aspiring to be, an executive headteacher or have a school trust CEO role with responsibility for leading several schools. This prestigious qualification will enable participants to take their career to the next level and specialist expertise in running a multi-school organisation. As well as one-to-one support and coaching participants will connect with, and learn from, other executive leaders in the field by joining a passionate network striving for educational equality.

Delivery

All NPQs are taught through a blended balance of online individual learning, online seminars and face-to-face meetings and a simplified end-of-course assessment. There are two cohorts annually, starting in Autumn (November) and Spring (February).

This programme last for 18 months.

We have an additional support offer for colleagues new to Headship within the NPQH programme. This slightly longer course provides access to free one-to-one support and coaching as well as ongoing support for the first year of headship.

Assessment

The assessment process has been refreshed to reduce the workload burden on teachers while still providing an opportunity for them to apply their knowledge.

To pass an NPQ, teachers will need to engage with at least 90% of the course and complete a final assessment.

Costs

Teachers and leaders employed in state funded schools and state funded organisations that offer 16-19 places in England will be able to access fully funded NPQs from Autumn 2021, to support teachers and pupils following the disruption to learning faced as a result of COVID-19. For more information, see the funding section above. 

Please register your interest by emailing npq@stsn.co.uk or click here.

New NPQs available from autumn 2022

From autumn 2022, 2 further NPQs will be available. They build on the new pathway for teacher and leader development and progression, accessible at all stages of a teacher’s or leader’s career. 

The 2022 NPQs comprise the:

  • NPQ for leading literacy – for teachers who have, or are aspiring to have, responsibilities for leading literacy across a school, year group, key stage or phase
  • NPQ for early years leadership – for leaders qualified to at least level 3 with a full and relevant qualification[footnote 1] who are, or are aspiring to be:
    • managers of private, voluntary and independent nurseries
    • headteachers of school-based or maintained nurseries
    • childminders with leadership responsibilities

As for the 2021 suite of NPQs, each of these NPQs is underpinned by a new content framework, setting out what participants should know and be able to do after completing an NPQ.

NPQLL

NPQLL: Leading Literacy

The NPQLL has been developed to aid the teaching of literacy in primary and secondary schools and support the catch-up of children whose literacy development has been impacted by the pandemic. 

The qualification will explore the development of literacy skills including oral language, word reading, reading comprehension, spelling, and writing composition through effective teaching and monitoring. The role of strong literacy leadership and high-quality training in primary and secondary settings, as well as managing transition between key stages and into secondary school will also be examined.

Please register your interest by emailing npq@stsn.co.uk

NPQEYL

NPQEYL: Early Years Leadership

The NPQEYL has been developed to underpin and increase early years-specific pedagogical leadership in early years settings, strengthen staff pedagogy, and support children whose development has been impacted by the pandemic. 

The qualification will investigate early education and child development, with a focus on communication, language, and physical development as well as personal, social and emotional growth, in line with the EYSF reforms. The setting of strategic direction and organisational culture, as well as pedagogical leadership, including evidence-based learning will also be explored.  

Please register your interest by emailing npq@stsn.co.uk

Where can I find the DfE guidance regarding NPQs?

Please click on the image below to visit the Department for Education's NPQ online service guidance:

A really good starting point is to read the NPQ brochure. You can download this file from the bottom of this webpage or click on the image below to view this document online. 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-professional-qualifications-frameworks-from-september-2021