We place huge emphasis on developing the leadership skills of both support and teaching staff. We offer a continuum of development opportunities – everything from getting you ready for leadership through to supporting you in a senior leadership role and onwards to Headship.


Our First Steps programme is based on Covey’s “Habits of Highly Effective People” and is a great personal effectiveness programme over seven twilights.

The Aspiring Middle Leader programme is designed specifically to practically enable those early in their career to be reflective and effective, preparing for middle leadership opportunities through a small scale in-school project.

We are proud to be an accredited regional provider of the National Professional Qualification for Middle Leadership (NPQML) and National Professional Qualification for and Senior Leadership (NPQSL). We run both twilight face to face programmes and blended learning opportunities.

We provide proven, high quality content as well as superb “student support”. Commencing with a 360 feedback tool, and guidance to assist with scoping a relevant in-school project, the programmes also build in the strong support that in-school coaching can offer. Since the assessment is grounded in a leadership challenge project the structure of the learning ensures there are concrete impacts back in schools.

We recognise that there is often a significant gap between senior leadership and Headship and so we have designed a programme called Growing Heads which support leaders in this crucial period giving scaffolded activities that allow you to grow in confidence and skill.

WAT is also partnering with Leadership Live and Ambition School Leadership to provide NPQH and NPQEL in the local area.

As you can see, what we want for our leaders, wherever they are in their journey is that they continue to move forwards, growing in confidence and capability to be the best that they can be for our school.

More Detail for National Professional Qualifications 

The National Professional Qualifications were reformed in 2017 and this DfE page provides an overview of the programmes and what is involved.

How will I learn?

Windsor Academy Trust offers two different delivery models for NPQML and NPQSL. The first is a series of eight face to face sessions delivered in after-school time over the course of a year. The second format is a blended learning approach with just 3 face to face sessions and a number of on-line facilitated modules delivered in partnership with Neon Learning. Click here for forthcoming programmes dates. 

As a nationally accredited programme there is a mandatory assessment process. Please click here to find out more about this.  

How can I be assured of quality?

The feedback on both of these tried and tested models is powerfully positive and we are proud to have performed well against nationally set metrics. Our recruitment has been very strong, including representing leaders from a range of backgrounds; our programme retention is high and we have achieved just over a 98% pass rate in the final assessment to achieve the qualifications.

Is there funding available?

Government funded scholarships are available until March 2020 for some leaders applying for the NPQs from schools in Walsall, Dudley, Sandwell, Wolverhampton, Coventry and some parts of Staffordshire and Worcestershire.

To access the scholarships for NPQs, the participants must:

  • be working in a school in an Opportunity Area (OA) or a Category 5 or 6 area (locally these include Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall, Wolverhampton and Coventry)
  • not already hold the NPQ for which they are applying, and
  • not previously have dropped out before completing the NPQ for which they are applying.

Since there has been over-subscription for this funding, the DfE is beginning to prioritise it’s funding using the following criteria (in order of priority):

  • Participants working in Opportunity Areas;
  • Participants working in schools where more than 30% of pupils receive Free School Meals;
  • Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) teachers and leaders;
  • Participants working in a school in an Opportunity Area, where the school is below the Key Stage 2 or Key Stage 4 floor standards.

How do I apply?

Applications are open until mid-September for the forthcoming cohorts. To apply for NPQML or NPQSL please download the application forms using the links below.

Application form for NPQML 

Application form for NPQSL

The application process and the administration of the programmes require us to gather and hold some of your personal data. Click here to see our NPQ Privacy Notice which compliments the WAT Data Protection and Information Security policies.

Get in touch

If you would like to discuss any of these sessions please email ahalford@windsoracademytrust.org.uk.

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