National Professional Qualification for Headship


Our NPQH is a unique and integrated course which not only focuses on the key skills needed for headship but is also informed by both national and international theory and practice. It's a high bar that will challenge and develop talented leaders from all backgrounds to deliver educational excellence.


This is a unique programme being delivered in full partnership with the University of Nottingham’s School of Education which could lead directly on to a MA in Educational Leadership and Management if you wish to continue your studies beyond NPQH. The University of Nottingham is a member of the elite Russell Group with one of the top research departments of education both nationally and internationally.


Our Programme

Our programme is delivered though a blended learning approach; a combination of face to face days, on-line learning , school experience, and self – directed study. As a competency based programme there is a focus throughout on the development of skills and understanding alongside leadership behaviours. Whilst on the programme day-to-day leadership development in your current school will allow you to:


  • Lead on a strategically challenging project
  • Engage in challenge and support from your coach and/or head teacher
  • Integrate new learning into your leadership practice
  • Develop those leadership behaviours identified through the 360 diagnostic
  • Negotiate and tackle specific whole team/school improvement priorities


Those not currently working in a school will undertake these activities in the school(s) that they have identified, and who have committed to support them.


The course duration is 12 months, including the 9 day placement in a contrasting school, with an expectation that participants go for final assessment within 12-18 months from induction.



Use of a Leadership Diagnostic

All participants are required to complete a 360 leadership review based around key leadership behaviours. This enables participants to use feedback from peers, those they report to and those that report to them, to celebrate strengths and identify areas for development. Ideally, this review is completed prior to induction. At induction, coaches and participants consider how best to develop identified areas. We encourage the review to be redone at the end of the programme.



Face-to-Face Days

Facilitators, themselves excellent and inspiring leaders, quickly get to know you and your learning needs, following you through from induction to final assessment. Participants attend 10 face to face training days including induction and focussed school improvement days.



Final Assessment

In order to gain the NPQH qualification, participants are required to complete an assessment task in their own school.



Masters Credits

Our Leadership courses have been designed by, and are co-delivered with, the University of Nottingham. Participants on our programmes can gain exemption from up to two Masters modules of the University of Nottingham’s MA Educational Leadership and Management degree.




  •   £1950 All charges include final assessment fees.
  •   DfE funding is available – please visit this page to check the eligibility criteria.


If you are a member of one of our partner or teaching school alliance schools, or making multiple bookings on behalf of a MAT or other cluster of schools, you may be eligible for up to a 10% discount.




Application Process


NOW - book your place with us onto NPQH. Read the guidance for, and look at the application form, to apply to be accepted onto NPQH. This process is called Gateway Assessment.

At this stage you can also complete the online GSA Booking Form which we will hold onto until you successfully pass the Gateway Assessment. 


The Gateway Assessment Document needs to be completed and sent via email to: by 12pm on Monday 23rd September 2019.


lincolnshire tsa logo

We also run a Hub over in Lincoln – if you would like to join this cohort and attend all Face 2 Face days in Lincoln, please apply here (you will still be required to complete the Gateway Assessment forms above)





What Next?


Due to unforeseen circumstances, the NPQH Application Event below will not be taking place on Monday 9th September 2019 – if you have any problems please email:


9th September 2019 4pm – 6pm at George Spencer Academy - Attend 'How to write a successful NPQH Gateway Assessment application' event. This event will help you to review the application form and look at past example applications.


Book NOW – to book your place on this event please complete and return the booking form to


          Previous Attendees Said:

      •   "The event completely met my needs."
      •   "The delivery by very approachable and knowledge providers was excellent! Thank you."
      •   "Good to have staff to talk to, to discuss each aspect of the application form and put this stage in context."
      •   "Chance to discuss the examples in my application...the overview of the whole process."
      •   "Detailed support through each section of application and opportunity to look at other successful applications."
      •   "I now know what to expect of the application, assessment and NPQH year. Thanks...and I will be applying to you."


12pm on 23rd September 2019 - deadline for Gateway Assessment application to be sent to us –



By 27th September 2019 - all applicants will be informed of the outcome of their Gateway Assessment application. Borderline applicants may be required to attend a face to face interview.



TBC - Borderline applicants to attend a face to face interview – venue TBC



7th November 2019 - Induction Day



To reserve a place on this intake, please contact us to complete the online booking form. Once you are successful at Gateway Assessment, we will ask you to complete the final stages of the booking process to confirm your place on the NPQH programme.




Closing Date

Closing date for bookings on to this course is 12pm on 13th September 2019.



Contact Us

Call us to discuss: 0115 9170100

Email us:








12pm on 23rd September 2019 - deadline for Gateway Assessment application to be sent to us –


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Course Information (PDF)

Apply Here (GSA TSA)

Apply Here (Lincolnshire Hub)


What Current Participants are Saying:

  • "I gained a lot from the course and my placement school. Having previously done leading from the middle and leadership pathways, I found the course at George Spencer the best run, most challenging and fun."
    Liz Runcorn Vice Principal, Anglesey Primary Academy
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Contact the Teaching School

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you would like more information on our courses...

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