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NPQH: Headship


National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH)

Leading Learning Forward TSA, in association with The Humber Teaching School, is pleased to announce that it has been accredited as a provider of the new National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH) by the Department for Education (DfE).

Who is NPQH for?

NPQH is for those who are, or are aspiring to become, a headteacher or head of school with responsibility for leading a school. This includes those who are, or are aspiring to be, a head or head of school with cross-school responsibilities e.g. a National Leader of Education (NLE).

What you will learn on NPQH?

Each NPQ course features the same 6 content areas as below, however the knowledge and skills within a content area increases in sophistication, depth and breadth progressively through each of the NPQ levels.

  • Strategy & Improvement

Anticipate changes in the external and strategic environment. Develop an evidence-based organisational strategy, in collaboration with the governing board. Lead a successful whole-school change programme.

  • Teaching and Curriculum Excellence

Lead and grow excellent teaching in a school. Support pupils of all backgrounds, abilities and particular needs in the school to achieve high standards, including Pupil Premium, SEND, EAL or the most able pupils. Systematically review the cumulative impact of initiatives on teacher workload and make proportionate and pragmatic demands on staff.

  • Leading with Impact

Distribute responsibility and accountability throughout the school to improve performance. Be an inspiring leader in a range of different situations. Communicate and negotiate with different people effectively to make progress on objectives.

  • Working in Partnership

Use different models of partnership working to improve educational provision, sustain a culture of mutual challenge and learn from others (including parents/carers, the wider community and other organisation). Lead an effective partnership which brings benefits to the school and wider education system, particularly in their school’s area(s) of expertise or specialism.

  • Managing Resources and Risks

Balance a school’s strategic or educational priorities with financial efficiency. Implement accountability arrangements to manage resources and risks effectively and in line with statutory requirements (where applicable, fulfilling the Accounting Officer role as defined in the Academies Financial Handbook).

  • Increasing Capability

Hold all staff to account for performance using performance management, appraisal, misconduct and grievance systems. Create and sustain an environment where all staff are encouraged to develop their own knowledge and skills, and support each other. Anticipate capability requirements or gaps in the school and design strategies to fill them.

Leadership Behaviours

In addition to learning about the 6 content areas, as part of the NPQH, participants are required to evaluate their strengths in each of the following 7 behaviours, at the beginning of their NPQ, and plan how they will develop these during their study programme. Descriptors of the behaviours are as follows:-

  • Commitment

The best leaders are self-motivated and take a creative, problem-solving approach to new challenge.

  • Collaboration

The best leaders readily engage with, and invest responsibility in, those who are best placed to improve outcomes.

  • Personal Drive

The best leaders are self-motivated and take a creative, problem-solving approach to new challenge.

  • Resilience

The best leaders remain courageous and positive in challenging, adverse or uncertain circumstances.

  • Awareness

The best leaders will know themselves and their teams, continually reflect on their own and others’ practices, and understand how best to approach difficult or sensitive issues.

  • Integrity

The best leaders act with honesty, transparency and always in the interests of the school and its pupils.

  • Respect

The best leaders respect the rights, views, beliefs and faiths of pupils, colleagues and stakeholders.

NPQH Assessment

The assessment requirements outlined below are applicable to participants starting their NPQH study programme with LLF TSA and The Humber Teaching School in 2019-20.

NPQH comprises 2 assessment tasks.

Task 1 – participants must:

  • Lead change programme at whole-school level, lasting at least 2 terms, to improve pupil progress and attainment.
  • Present the plan to the Governing board prior to implementation, and gather their feedback
  • Submit a written account of the project to the provider for assessment, which aims to evidence the criteria indicated. This should cover the design, implementation and evaluation of the programme.
  • Submit supporting documents/material as evidence where indicated below. Supporting evidence must be concise and directly related to the candidate’s project and corresponding assessment criterion.
  • Not exceed a total word count of 4,000 words, excluding supporting documents or annexes

Task 2 – participants must:

  • Undertake a placement in a contrasting school (for example, by performance, pupil profile, geography etc.), lasting at least 9 working days.
  • Research the placement school’s current and/or projected resource and capability challenges, and design an action plan to address these.
  • Present the plan to the placement school’s governing board and gather their feedback.
  • Submit a written account of the project to the provider for assessment, which aims to evidence the criteria indicated
  • Submit supporting documents/material as evidence where indicated below. Supporting evidence must be concise and directly related to the candidate’s project and corresponding assessment criterion.
  • Not exceed a total word count of 2,500, excluding supporting documents or annexes

Assessment Content Areas

Part A

  • Strategy and Improvement
  • Teaching and Curriculum Excellence
  • Leading with Impact
  • Working in Partnership

Part B

  • Managing Resources and Risks
  • Increasing Capability

The assessment for NPQH is conducted  on behalf of The Humber Teaching School and Leading Learning Forward TSA by experienced assessors and moderators.

Programme Delivery

NPQH is delivered over the course of at least two academic terms, ensuring that participants are afforded sufficient time and development opportunities to successfully meet the assessment criteria. This will include the equivalent of a minimum of 6 days face-to-face sessions out of school, as well as online webinars and school exchange visits, delivered by experienced school leaders. A total of 175 hours is required.

Programme Cost

The cost of NPQH with Leading Learning Forward TSA and The Humber Teaching School for 2019-20 is currently £1599 which will cover the cost of:

  • course materials and resources
  • course presentations and face-to-face sessions
  • online learning and support
  • school placement support
  • lunch and refreshments
  • one assessment submission.

NB: Any participant failing to adhere to the assessment requirements may be liable for the cost of re-submission.

DfE Scholarship Funding - Available Now!

100% scholarship funding from the DfE is available for course applicants, starting before 31 March 2020, whose schools are in Local Authority areas of need which have been identified by the Department for Education. Please visit the NPQ Scholarship Funding 2019-20 page on this website for more information and to check your eligibility. 

Eligibility for DfE Scholarship Funding

Applicants from schools, academies and colleges in Hull, North and North East Lincolnshire should be eligible for this funding. We will apply on your behalf as soon as we receive your completed application form.  Therefore, early application to us is advised. Scholarship funding, where successful, will be paid  direct to the NPQ Provider (not to your school) to cover your course and assessment costs.

NPQH Applications

Please read or download our current NPQH information leaflet (PDF):

Delivery Plan

The current delivery plan is as follows:


Session Description



Induction & Diagnostics



Personal Study/Improvement Project



Face-to-Face 1



Face-to-Face 2



Face-to-Face 3: Support/Coaching/Online Learning



Personal Study/Improvement Project



Face-to-Face 4: Support/Coaching/Online Learning



Face-to-Face 5



Face-to-Face 6



School Visit/Exchange/Placement



Personal Study/Improvement Project






Project & Assessment




175 h

Key Policies, Notices & Protocols

NPQ policies, notices and protocols (in PDF  format) for 2019-20 can be read and downloaded via the links below are as follows:

Application Form

The current  NPQH application form for use during 2019-20 (Word document) is available via the link below: 

Apply now to start in January 2020. Completed application forms should be sent by e-mail to:

NPQH Enquiries 

If you have any queries about the 2019-20 NPQH programme or wish to register interest for future participation in an NPQH programme, please contact Catherine Thompson in the LLF TSA office: 


The Humber Teaching School


Page Updated: 25 October 2019