NPQ for SENCOs

Teach First Learning Mentor Programme

A brand new NPQ designed for new, existing and aspiring SENCOs and those who want to understand what underpins successful SEND leadership. 

Our first intake will commence in autumn 2024 and this programme replaces the NASENCO qualification.

  • Grow your expertise as a leader of SEND.
  • Create a culture where pupils with SEND can thrive.
  • On-going support through seminars and professional networks.
  • Learn about the statutory framework for SEND.
  • Free one-to-one support and coaching.
  • DfE funding will target teachers and leaders serving schools in more deprived communities.

Deepen your understanding of what makes an effective SENCO.

Benefits

Grow your expertise as a leader of SEND

Broaden your leadership knowledge and develop expertise across specialist areas, such as the identification of SEND, as well as leading and managing provision.

Create a culture where pupils with SEND can thrive

Learn how to establish and sustain a supportive culture where everyone feels welcome, safe and that they belong.

Learn about the statutory framework for SEND

Develop confidence to give statutory guidance and ensure that school policies and practices take account of the relevant legislation.

Develop effective working partnerships

Explore approaches to working collaboratively with colleagues, families, external agencies and specialists.

Free one-to-one support and coaching

If you work in a school serving disadvantaged communities, you can apply for our free one-to-one support which runs alongside the NPQ for Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators (NPQ for SENCOs).

This free support comes in the form of an experienced former school leader with strategic SEND experience who will coach and guide you throughout the programme.

You can apply for this additional support in your application.

On-going support through seminars and professional networks

Share experiences with other school leaders and experienced SENCOs.

Learn how they’ve faced similar challenges and build a professional network that will support you throughout your career.

A proven track record, from previous programme members

Findings from our latest survey showed 99% of our programme members undertaking a Leadership NPQ were very satisfied or satisfied, and 93% rate the programme quality as good or better.

Interested in an NPQ?

Applications open in July for our autumn 2024 intake.

Register to be notified when applications open.

Register your interest

Need more information about NPQs?

Frequently asked questions

Looking for a different leadership programme?

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Programme

Is the NPQ for Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators (NPQ for SENCOs) for me?

This programme is aimed at existing SENCOs, school leaders or those interested in developing expertise in SEND or becoming a SENCO in the future.

You’ll be passionate about working with pupils with SEND and keen to develop your leadership skills to create an environment where all pupils can thrive.

The NPQ for Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators (NPQ for SENCOs) replaces the NASENCO qualification.

How does the NPQ for SENCOs work?

This 21-22 month programme (18-months' delivery, plus three to four month assessment window) consists of a series of modules based on the DfE’s NPQ framework.

Each module cycle features:

  • evidence-based online content to refresh and build knowledge, as well as show what this looks like in your context
  • a formative assessment task to support your learning
  • online seminars with a group of peers, facilitated by an experienced school leader and SENCO. You’ll analyse and reflect on the task and hear further examples of good practice
  • the opportunity to record reflections and consolidate learning

This cycle repeats throughout the programme, with opportunities to consider implementation in every module.

It features discrete learning early on, focused specifically on the theory and practice behind effective implementation.

This will help you to apply key learning throughout the programme and plan a strategic improvement focused on your context and pupils.

There will also be ongoing support through seminar groups and a discussion forum.

What will I learn?

You'll develop essential knowledge, skills and concepts that underpin successful SEND leadership within a school.

Throughout the programme, you will work alongside other leaders to build a school culture in which pupils with SEND can:

  • participate meaningfully in the full life of the school
  • achieve ambitious outcomes
  • make successful transitions to their next steps

Modules include:

  • How to develop an inclusive culture
  • The identification and assessment of SEND
  • Understanding and implementation of statutory SEND legislation
  • A focus on working in partnership with leaders, families and external agencies

Our content is informed by a strong and up to date evidence base, developed with input from practising SENCOs and inclusion experts such as the National Association for Special Educational Needs (nasen).

Our programmes have a practical focus. You’ll be supported to understand what makes an effective SENCO and the operational and strategic role you play or will play once in post.

Find out more about the DfE’s NPQ for SENCOs content framework:

Download framework

What are the training commitments?

The course consists of 10 modules. Each module involves approximately 4 hours of independent study, followed by an online seminar where you will discuss your learning with peers and experienced SEN leaders.

You will also attend two conferences and complete visits to different settings.

How will I be assessed?

To get your NPQ accreditation, you’ll need to complete the course and pass a written assessment (between 1,500 and 2,500 words).

Interested in an NPQ?

Applications open in July for our autumn 2024 intake.

Register to be notified when applications open.

Register your interest

Need more information about NPQs?

Frequently asked questions

Looking for a different leadership programme?

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Cost

Cost: £1,265

DfE scholarship funding

A limited number of DfE scholarships will continue to be available to all teachers and leaders from state-funded schools and state-funded organisations that offer 16 to 19 places in England for the NPQ for Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators (NPQ for SENCOs).
 
For further information and guidance, please see the information on the GOV.UK website.

Interested in an NPQ?

Applications open in July for our autumn 2024 intake.

Register to be notified when applications open.

Register your interest

Need more information about NPQs?

Frequently asked questions

Looking for a different leadership programme?

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Apply

Is my school eligible?

While NPQs are open to all teachers and leaders in schools in England, we prioritise working with schools that teach a high number of pupils from low-income backgrounds.

Our criteria are agreed with the Department for Education (DfE) and used to identify schools that will benefit most from working with us.

We use the Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index (IDACI) and pupil premium (PP) information for each school to guide us.

We work with schools that are ranked in the top 70% most deprived areas (based on IDACI) and where the proportion of pupils eligible for pupil premium is in the top 50% of all state-funded schools.

If your school is affiliated to one of our NPQ delivery partners, your school is automatically eligible to take part.

Contact the relevant delivery partner for further information.

If you’re not sure whether your school is eligible, or if you think your school would benefit from our support but doesn’t match the standard eligibility criteria above, please contact us.

When does the programme start?

The next programme starts in autumn 2024.

How can I apply?

Applications open in July 2024 for our autumn intake.

If you would like to register your interest, please contact us and we will then be able to let you know once applications open.

If you have already been in contact with one of our delivery partners, please continue to liaise with them on your next steps.

Interested in an NPQ?

Applications open in July for our autumn 2024 intake.

Register to be notified when applications open.

Register your interest

Need more information about NPQs?

Frequently asked questions

Looking for a different leadership programme?

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