This qualification is intended for middle leaders with responsibility for leading a team, including key stage/subject/curriculum leaders, heads of department and pastoral leaders. Please get in touch if you have any questions about whether or not this is the right programme for you.


To achieve the qualification you will need to complete 2 essential and 1 elective module (and related assignments) from the following selection:



Note that each module will be delivered across 2 half days/afternoons.


Managing systems and processes

This module focuses on the importance of effective management structures, systems and processes. Participants will learn about the role of team leaders in implementing whole school policies with their team in a systematic and consistent way. The module will explore a number of models and theories of leadership and consider the relationship between leadership and management.


Leading teaching

Through this module participants will know how to develop, improve and sustain high quality teaching within a team. They will also know and understand the importance of using data and identifying strategies for closing the gaps in attainment.




Leading an effective team

This module focuses on how team leaders can develop a highly effective team with a culture of high performance and high levels of trust. It will recognise the varied and sometimes complex nature of team structures in schools. Participants will learn about the characteristics of highly effective teams and the research evidence relating to how to build, lead and sustain such a team.


Succeeding in middle leadership

Through this module participants will understand more about their own leadership and how they can develop their leadership capacity and capability. With a focus on the relationship between personal effectiveness and leadership development, the module will also consider effective professional learning, well being and resilience.


Leading and developing staff

This module focuses on how to develop individual team members to improve teaching and individual performance. Participants will explore how to spot talent and grow potential for the benefit of the individual, the team and the school. The module will also focus on teacher appraisal, performance management and how to respond to underperforming teachers in a timely way.


Leading inclusion; achievement for all

This module teaches aspiring heads how to improve practice and raise expectations so that all pupils, but particularly those with special educational needs and/or disabilities, can achieve. Participants will be taught how to implement the key strategies from the Department for Education project, Achievement for All - improving assessment, tracking and intervention; working more effectively with parents; and improving wider outcomes for children and young people.


Leading change for improvement

This module will teach participants the essential knowledge linked to leading change to achieve school improvement. Participants will review various case studies and accounts of practice to evaluate how leaders implement change for improvement and consider a range of approaches to leading and managing change.


Leading in a diverse system

This module is provided as two half modules. A core half module will focus on the complex and multi layered nature of contexts and the ways in which these differences can affect the nature, direction and pace of leadership. This half module will look at the importance of context and how team leaders operate effectively within different contexts. Participants will learn how to adapt their leadership to lead and manage their team within specific contexts and how to work collaboratively with other team leaders from different schools. The second part consists of a series of half modules which will focus on the unique features and challenges of specific education contexts.


All modules will be supported by National College online activities, communities and resources.


Following a 360 leadership assessment, your pathway through the programme will be planned on the induction day with the programme facilitators. In addition to online access to materials you will be part of national and regional online communities to debate and learn with your peers.



The programme will enable you to become a highly effective middle leader and help to prepare you for a future senior leadership role.


Modules are delivered in locations across the region so you shouldn't have to travel too far.