National Professional Qualification for Headship

Headship (NPQH)* is for school leaders who are, or are aspiring to be, a headteacher or head of school with responsibility for leading a school.

What will I learn?

  • The strategic and operational role of a headteacher.
  • How to work with those responsible for governance to establish and sustain the school’s strategic direction and develop an effective culture across the school.
  • How to ensure that teaching across the school is effective, transforming pupils’ knowledge understanding and stimulates their thinking.
  • How to oversee the design and implementation of carefully sequenced, broad and coherent curricula across the school.
  • How to ensure that assessment is of high-quality and as reliable as possible without creating unnecessary workload.
  • How to establish and sustain the enabling conditions for good behaviour and ensure that pupils with complex behavioural needs are supported.
  • How to ensure all pupils achieve success by supporting colleagues to adapt their teaching to different pupil needs without creating unnecessary workload.
  • How to ensure colleagues participate in effective professional development.
  • Organisational management (safeguarding, resource allocation and management; recruit, develop, support and appropriately manage all colleagues).
  • Effective implementation and change management.
  • Working in partnership with parents, the community and with other schools.
  • Governance and accountability.

Summary of the Programme and NPQ Learning Hours

Session Type NPQ training (55 hours):

Every Term (3 Terms)

Total Hours (3 Terms)

Audit before start of programme


One day induction conference at the beginning of year 1


Face to face events - Terms 2, 3 & 4


Self-directed learning / Learning journal / Implementation project

13 hours per term (minimum)


Online learning community: Discussion session

1 hour each term (minimum)


Peer learning group

2 hours each term


Line manager sessions

Termly one-hour meetings


Total hours