Coronavirus (COVID-19) information: Leading Together programme members

Schools need great leadership more than ever. Working with us will give you the tools and networks to build a fairer education system.

Last updated 8 January 2021


Due to the third national lockdown announced on 4 January 2021, we’ll now be pausing all face-to-face visits by support roles in schools until further notice. We’ll continue to provide online support to trainees, mentors, programme members and other key school stakeholders as we have been doing whilst considering how we can best support you in this new lockdown situation. Any further updates will be added to these web pages.

Read the updated guidance

New applicants

We’re continuing to accept new applications and enquiries for our Leading Together programme. In response to COVID-19, we’re offering additional support including coaching from an experienced headteacher. Schools can start to access this support from autumn 2020.

Current programme members

If you’re enrolled on our Leading Together programme, rest assured that the programme will continue. But we’re making some changes to stay in line with the latest advice and keep you supported through this challenging time.

In line with government guidelines, we are delivering module content online. Our immediate priority is to work with you and your team in a bespoke way that supports you with the current challenges and the priorities your school now faces. We can hold online one-to-one coaching sessions, work with you or small groups on key areas, and/or hold team coaching sessions.

Our face-to-face support in schools will now be available in all government tiers, but the range of support will vary by government tier. This is also subject to ongoing changes to government or Department for Education guidance and is dependent upon the unique visitor policy for each school.

  • In all tiers we continue to provide high-quality, highly responsive support to trainees, mentors and programme members online. Although face-to-face meetings and support are important, we’ve received positive feedback about the impact of our online support, and we’re pleased that trainees and programme members are still making great progress.
  • For schools within Tiers 1 and 2, we will be prioritising face-to-face visits for trainees and schools that have the greatest or most imminent need for support. It’s possible that the person visiting each school would not be their typical Achievement Partner or Development Lead. School visits regarding fundraising and videography activity might also take place in these areas.
  • For schools within Tiers 3 and 4, we will only be able to provide essential face-to-face support. This covers support that can’t be done online and without which a trainee or school is at risk of withdrawing from their programme(s). This could be an observation of a trainee for whom progress is ‘a cause for concern’; or a group coaching session, which is considered essential support.

We will continue to provide most of our school support online where it is sensible to do so. To minimise risk and to reduce the likelihood of Teach First spreading COVID-19 between schools, our employees will only be permitted to make one school visit per day and cannot complete school visits in an area under different tier restrictions to the area in which they live.

Please let us know if you feel that your school requires essential face-to-face or additional support. Each visit request will be reviewed on a case by case basis, and our team will make arrangements with your school where needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

We know it’s an uncertain time. Below are answers to some frequently asked questions to provide more guidance. As circumstances change, we'll keep these updated with the latest information as soon as we’re able to provide it. 

Are the Leading Together programme start and end dates changing?

There are no changes to the programme start and end dates for any of the Leading Together cohorts: 

  • Cohort 2 continues until April 2021.
  • Cohort 3 starts on 30 March 2020 and runs until April 2022.
  • Applications are now open for cohort 4 starting in spring 2021. 
What about Leading Together residentials, Kick Off Day and Twilights?

Module content usually covered at the Summer residentials for Cohort 2 and in-person twilights are being delivered online throughout the Autumn term. Cohort 3 content is now being delivered online throughout the autumn term. Contact your Achievement Partner for information about dates for your regional cluster.

Will support for Leading Together schools continue?

Yes. Bespoke support from the Achievement Partner is continuing virtually. This might include one-to-one coaching sessions or group sessions.

What about working with other schools? Can you help me with what other schools are doing to react to COVID-19?

Given current restrictions, we're sorry that cluster Twilights and visits to other schools aren't possible right now. Twilights are delivered online this term with other schools so you still have opportunities to collaborate. Your Achievement Partner will continue to support you to access other school’s expertise.

What happens if my Achievement Partner falls ill / is unable to work?

If your Achievement Partner is absent for any reason we will be in touch to let you know and to identify what support you need in their absence. All our Achievement Partners are trained to the same high level of skill and competence for the role. Our priority is the continuity of your programme so we will work closely with you to identify the most important areas for immediate focus.

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