The first groups of some 5000 candidates from the head teacher training programme will graduate over the next few weeks. They will receive the National Professional Qualification for Headteachers which is awarded by the National College for School Leadership. The leadership programme was launched in Autumn 2000 and is being run at ten regional centres. It takes between 6 months and two years to complete according to candidates previous experience. A new round of applications for the programme starts today.The programe is made up of three elements. The residential training challenges thinking about current practice and provides experience in dealing with different scenarios. The information and communication technology element gives access to the online community ‘Virtual Heads’ which allows candidates to get a wide range of views and to network with colleagues from across the country. The school-based assessment deals with the practicalities of leadership.
The National College for School Leadership aims to provide a single focus for leadership development and research, to be a driving force for world class leadership in schools and the wider education service and to be a provider and promoter of excellence. It is also a major resource for schools, a catalyst for innovation and a focus for national debate on leadership issues.