National Professional Qualification For Senior Leadership (NPQSL)

We have partnered with Ambition Institute through their national Alliance to deliver National Professional Qualifications (NPQs). You can find out more about Ambition Institute and this Alliance by visiting their website.

Ambition Institute are the NPQ licence holder and are accountable for all NPQ provision under the terms of their licence, including that provided by us as a member of this Alliance. As a provider of NPQs through this Alliance,we work closely with Ambition to ensure that we meet all of the necessary requirements and metrics as set out by the Department for Education and as per the terms of Ambition’s licence. This is to ensure the quality and consistency of these qualifications at a national level. You can find details of these requirements and metrics here, as well as current performance against them on Ambition’s website. As a partner we contribute to the overall performance of Ambition Institute against these requirements and metrics and so the performance data shared here is reflective of Ambition’s own NPQ provision, as well as that of each and all partners in their Alliance including ours, on aggregate.

More information about our partnership can be found by accessing their Transparency Partner Guidance document


The Programme

The NPQSL is designed to help those aspiring to, or currently performing within, senior leadership roles, with an aim to enhance their performance and leadership skills. The programme equips participants with the necessary skills and knowledge to achieve the NPQSL qualification.

The core components of the NPQSL programme are as follows:

  • 9 face-to-face, facilitated training sessions (half day);
  • 360 tool for self-evaluation against core leadership competencies;
  • 1 improvement project and associated written assignment

The NPQSL curriculum covers 6 competency areas which are assessed over one written assignment.

  • Strategy and improvement
  • Teaching and curriculum excellence
  • Leading with impact
  • Working in partnership
  • Managing resources and risks
  • Increasing capability
Please see the NPQ Content and Assessment Framework for more detail about your chosen NPQ, including assignments and placements.To support you in the completion of your chosen NPQ our offer includes as standard:

• Expert-designed curriculum, content and resources which align to the required leadership behaviours and competencies, provided by Ambition Institute

• Minimum 18 hours of face-to-face, facilitated training delivered over at least two terms (but no more than 18 months)

• Two 360° reviews (at the beginning and end of the programme)

• Option of a Viva

• A network of peers and relevant experts

• Assessment support and full assessment of your final submission

• Trained and quality assured facilitators of whom at least 50% are serving school leaders


This programme is suitable for:

  • Middle leaders who are aspiring to senior leadership and meet the following eligibility criteria:
  • Likely to be in a senior leadership role in the next 12-18 months
  • Have completed at least one year at a middle leadership level
  • May have served on an extended SLT
  • Those currently in senior leadership roles who fit within the guidance below:
    • Senior leaders should have responsibility for the results of a team, and line manage at least one middle leader
    • Will serve on the senior leadership of the school, and attend SLT meetings
    • In secondary schools, senior leaders will have roles such as assistant headteacher or assistant/vice-principals
    • In large secondary schools, heads of large departments and faculties, leaders may have responsibility commensurate with that of senior leaders
    • In primary schools, senior leaders will have roles such as assistant/associate headteacher or assistant/vice-principals as well as substantive whole-school responsibilities
    • If the senior leader is aspiring to headship, or is a deputy headteacher in secondary / deputy or assistant headteacher in primary, this person is likely to be more suited to NPQH

For both aspiring and serving senior leaders to receive their qualification, they will need to lead an improvement project across their school, lasting at least two terms, to reduce variation in pupil progress and attainment and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of teaching. Therefore, it is essential that this is something your school understands and will support when placing participants on the programme.

For more details on the Ambition Institute NPQ Alliance please click here.


Audience  :  Senior leaders, aspiring senior leaders, staff with significant responsibilities

Cohort size  :  Maximum 29 people per cohort

Date   : Dates for 2021/22 tbc

Time  :  9:30am – 12:30pm

Venue  :  Altrincham Grammar School for Girls, Cavendish Road, Bowdon, Altrincham, WA14 2NL

Cost  :  £1300 including assessment fee

Facilitated by  :  Helen Cleary and Lynn Nicholls

Click here to apply for this course

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