Leading Together

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Build stronger school leadership across your senior team with our free programme.

  • Develop your entire senior leadership team
  • Create lasting change
  • Expert coaching and training
  • Free of charge
  • Accelerate your school’s improvement strategy
  • Learn and implement evidence-based best practice
Two years
Only available to schools in specific areas
We're making some changes due to COVID-19

Create a school environment where pupils can thrive for years to come.


Develop your entire senior leadership team and create lasting change

Unlike other programmes, Leading Together works with your entire senior leadership team, collectively growing their ability to deliver sustainable improvements across your whole school. Together we’ll focus on your school’s specific goals and build plans for long term success.

Intensive support tailored to your school’s needs

Over two years, your senior leadership team will work closely alongside one of our Achievement Partners – experienced coaches and school leaders that we match with your school. The Achievement Partner will support, guide and coach your senior leadership team to understand the challenges your school faces, create a robust plan that tackles them in the long term and implement that plan across your whole school.

Teachers in your school can also earn a National Professional Qualification (NPQ) by joining our middle, senior or headship programmes.

Accelerate your school’s improvement strategy

Our programme’s mix of learning and support equips your senior team with the latest leadership knowledge and the ability to apply it effectively in your school. Once you've identified sustainable improvements that need to be made, you'll have the support and access to expertise to implement these and make positive changes for your pupils.

Learn and implement evidence-based best practice

Designed to make a real, long-term impact, the programme’s learning modules are built around the latest research and best practice. Delivered face-to-face and online, they’re focused on key aspects of school leadership such as curriculum, assessment, developing others, strategic planning and implementing change.

  • 89% of programme members rate the programme good or even better.
  • 86% said that Leading Together developed their team's leadership skills.
  • 85% found it helped their school create an improvement plan.

Looking for a different leadership programme?

The Leading Together programme has come at a fantastic time for us. We’re going to regroup and write a plan to take the school to outstanding as quickly as possible.
Linda Emmett,
All Saints Catholic College


Leadership matters

That’s a fact. But leaders in schools that teach the most disadvantaged pupils don’t always get the support and development they need. We’ve researched the issue extensively and found that strong school leadership really makes a difference:

  • Schools are ten times more likely to improve at their next Ofsted inspection with effective leadership.
  • Improving the whole leadership team has up to four times greater impact on pupil outcomes than focusing on individual ‘super heads’.
  • Nearly nine out of ten teachers and leaders say leadership training should involve the whole team.
  • Nine out of ten teachers say they’re more likely to stay at their school if they’re supported into leadership roles.

Our research also shows there are plenty of teachers and leaders eager to step up if given the opportunity. That’s where Leading Together comes in – it creates opportunities for teachers and leaders across entire schools, as well as for the young people who’ll benefit from their greater expertise.

Leading Together drives change

From the feedback we’ve received from previous programme members, we know that Leading Together has made a real difference to schools:

  • 95% of programme members (senior school leaders) rated the programme as good or better - for headteachers, this was 100%.
  • 98% rated the support of their Achievement Partner as good or very good - for headteachers, this again was 100%.
  • 94% rated the quality of the training as good or very good.

Programme members particularly valued the bespoke support from their Achievement Partner, which includes one-to-one and team coaching. As one school leader said:

“(My Achievement Partner) has been absolutely brilliant throughout this and has been one of the most important people I've met in my career. (They) can be described as a mirror – (they’ve) helped me to reflect in so many different ways and have brought a new-found confidence in myself as a result.” 

We also know from programme members that Leading Together:​

  • supported the development of leadership skills among school leadership teams (94% agree or strongly agree) 
  • helped the school plan its improvement priorities (94%)​
  • improved how their school’s senior leadership team implements school changes (85%) 

Read how Leading Together has helped one of the schools on our programme.

Looking for a different leadership programme?

Leading Together

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teacher and pupils at desk smiling


Built around your school’s needs

Leading Together is delivered in four phases over two years. During each, one of your senior leaders will address the challenges your school faces, supported closely by your Achievement Partner whose objective guidance will help you identify the best solutions.

  • Diagnose – analyse your school’s priorities and strengths to identify strategic improvement goals. 
  • Build – devise, test and implement new ways to achieve these goals. Individual senior leaders will build knowledge of key areas identified in the first stage through a series of learning modules. 
  • Embed and drive – further learning modules and coaching will help school leaders turn knowledge into positive habits that provide day-to-day benefits for all teachers and pupils. 
  • Sustain – leaders reflect on what’s worked and how to weave a permanent culture of ongoing development throughout your school.

A mix of training and support

Combining academic and practical learning as well as mentoring and networking, our programme is delivered in several ways:    

By your Achievement Partner – an experienced coach, facilitator and school leader that we match with your school. The Achievement Partner works alongside your senior leadership team for the full two years. They won’t tell you what to do but they will support and challenge you, helping your senior leaders create plans and pinpoint expertise that your school really needs.

Along the way they will work alongside your senior leadership team to:

  • understand your school's needs. 
  • create a robust improvement plan.
  • implement strategies that will have a lasting impact across the whole school.

Through learning modules – focusing on key aspects of school leadership, modules can be spread across the senior leadership team to fit in with their responsibilities. Each module has two levels:

  • First, to build knowledge of good leadership. 
  • Second, to apply that knowledge to your school’s specific circumstances. 

With bespoke school support – bring in additional expertise to address your school’s priorities.

Your school will also be connected to the Teach First community, a goldmine of support and resources. For example, our corporate supporters can provide pro-bono business advisers and coaches. Plus, our NPQ-accredited leadership programmes are open to all teachers and leaders in your school.

Through school-to-school collaboration – create lasting support networks with schools in your local community and beyond. This includes working with other schools on the programme and visiting those that have been on a similar journey.

We also hold regular events and networking opportunities that bring your senior leaders together with educational experts, leaders from other schools across the UK and the wider Teach First community – all well-positioned to help your school improve.

Looking for a different leadership programme?

Leading Together

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Teacher and pupils at science lesson


What’s the cost?

There isn’t one. Our programme is fully-funded.

Looking for a different leadership programme?

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To take part, you need to be working at a school that is either a Teach First partner or eligible to be one. That means your school must be in England and teach a high number of pupils from low-income backgrounds. 

We calculate which schools are eligible using the Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index (IDACI) and Achieving Excellence Areas (AEA), a measure which identifies parts of the country where children persistently underperform.

Based on these scoring systems, eligible schools must fall under one of these categories:

  • An IDACI of 40 or greater (this means 40% of pupils are living in low-income homes).
  • An IDACI of 35 to 40 and an AEA score of 4 to 6.
  • An IDACI of 30 to 35 and an AEA of 5 or 6.
  • An IDACI of 25 to 30 and an AEA score of 6. 

How to apply

We are still confirming the areas where the programme will be available for an April 2021 start. If you think Leading Together could make a difference to your school and would like to express an interest in the programme, fill in our online form. We’ll be in touch to talk about next steps.

Looking for a different leadership programme?

Teacher in class with hand up
Pupils looking at test tubes
For any schools considering Leading Together, I'd say absolutely do it. It's united our leadership team and consequently our entire learning community.
Nick Miller,
Headteacher at Rowley Hall Primary School

Could you be an Achievement Partner?

We’re always looking for experienced, talented and passionate school leaders to become Achievement Partners. In particular, we want people who’ve:

  • successfully created sustained school improvement
  • developed headteachers and other school leaders through coaching and mentoring
  • deep knowledge of the education sector on a regional and national level

The role is for two years and involves working with several schools across your region. You’ll be responsible for their progress through the Leading Together programme by training, coaching and supporting headteachers and their senior leadership teams.

If that sounds up your street, get in touch to tell us you’re interested.

A Leading Together Achievement Partner in discussion with a teacher.

Take your leadership to new heights with an NPQSL from our accredited senior leadership course.

Senior Leader

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Get leadership training for your school

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