"I want there to be a culture of high-quality ongoing professional development running like a golden thread through a teacher’s career, and I want this to be shaped increasingly through access to clearer career pathways for the next generation of teachers and school leaders.  The newly strengthened set of gold standard national professional qualifications (NPQs) that will be delivered from September this year are a big step forward"

Justine Greening, Secretary of State for Education  

The NPQML is a professional qualification providing recognition of leadership development and professional achievement. It will support you in developing the skills, knowledge and confidence that you need to lead a high-performing team in a school and to improve classroom practice.

Who is it for?

The qualification is aimed at individuals with responsibility for leading a team, including leaders of key stage, subject, curriculum, heads of department and pastoral leaders. This includes those who are, or are aspiring to be, a middle leader with cross-school responsibilities e.g. a Specialist Leader of Education (SLE).

Course Overview

The qualification will support you in becoming a highly effective middle leader, with the skills, confidence and knowledge to drive successful team performance and improved classroom practice across your team. The support of a 'sponsor' from your school, usually your line manager or Headteacher, is essential to enable you to make the most of the programme. 

Each Module involves a mix of blended learning, including the following:

  • Online entry Leadership Diagnostics that identifies development areas through feedback from colleagues
  • Induction Twilight for you and your school based mentor, to enable you to fully understand the requirements of the programme and final assessment
  • 4 Face-to-Face days facilitated by experienced and serving practitioners
  • Online self-directed learning to link Face-to-Face learning with your school environment
  • School exchange programme through action learning sets to share best practice with colleagues
  • Online access to the most recent school leadership research to support your development as a leader
  • Final Assessment Twilight to fully prepare you for your assessment submission
  • Ongoing support (from your in-school Mentor and our trained Facilitators) to link learning to your in-school role

Study Modules

Leading with impact:

  • Anticipate other peoples’ views or feelings and moderate your approach accordingly.
  • Adopt different leadership styles to ensure the team meets its objectives.
  • Present, communicate or defend challenging messages confidently and positively to a range of audiences.

Teaching and Curriculum Excellence:

  • Grow excellent, evidence-based teaching in a team and a curriculum that develops pupils academically and prepares them for adult life.
  • Improve the progress, attainment and behaviour of all pupils, including those who are disadvantaged or have particular needs (for example, Pupil Premium, SEND, EAL or the most able pupils).

Increasing Capacity:

  • Hold others to account, line manage and evaluate performance effectively.
  • Support all members of their team with appropriate, targeted opportunities for professional development, including newly qualified teachers, teaching assistants, and stronger or weaker performers.
  • Recognise their own strengths and weaknesses and identify learning linked to their needs.
  • Evaluate the impact of professional development and pupils outcomes.

 School Strategy and Improvement:

  • Manage and analyse performance data to evaluate progress, identify trends, define team priorities and develop improvement strategies.
  • Implement successful change at team level.

 Working in Partnership:

  • Realise the benefits of collaborating with others, including teachers, teaching assistants and non-teaching staff, other schools, parents/carers and other organisations.
  • Support their team to build and sustain relationships with others which develop and share good practice and improve performance.

Managing Resources and Risks:

  • Deploy staff, financial and educational resources within a team effectively, to enhance pupil progress and attainment.
  • Manage risks within a team effectively (for example, in relation to staffing, finances or teacher workload), using a risk register.
  • Deliver a safe environment for pupils and staff.

Final Assessment

The final assessment is submitted to an external assessor. The assessment comprises of a

project style submission detailing your development as a leader throughout the programme.  

You will create a 4,500 word report based on your School Project where you will have been working with your team to improve pupil progress and attainment and your team's capabilities.
Your school-based coach and sponsor will also be required to contribute by verifying your submission and supporting with further evidence.

You will be able to choose a window for your assessment within an 18 month timescale. 


EKLA is able to offer the programme through a local cluster to schools for £749 per person.

In addition KAH Scholarships of £100 per person are available for participants from schools in Swale, Canterbury and Thanet.  For schools in these areas the cost would be £649 per participant.


Applications for the NPQML programme with EKLA are now open.

To apply for your place on the NPQML course, please contact us for an application form.

Deadline for applications for November 2017 intake is Wednesday 20th September 2017


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