Funded professional development for school leaders

Many existing and aspiring school leaders in Stoke-on-Trent have already registered to access a fully funded National Professional Qualification (NPQ) course.

Fully funded NPQs are open to all teachers and senior leaders in the Stoke-on-Trent Opportunity Area. They are aimed at those who would like further development to be a high performing middle or senior leader. The qualifications include:

  • National Professional Qualification for Middle Leadership (NPQML)
  • National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership (NPQSL)
  • National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH)
  • National Professional Qualification for Executive Leadership (NPQEL)

A list of providers and details on how to apply are available here, but for ease of reference, a list of providers in the West Midlands is shown in the table attached:

If you would like any further information about how you or a member of staff can benefit from this offer, please get in touch.

Research School – professional development offer to all schools in Stoke-on-Trent

The Stoke on Trent Research School will be providing a wide range of professional development opportunities throughout 2018-19. Each school/college, within the Opportunity Area, has been allocated a grant to enable engagement with the Research School courses. The funding will be held by the Local Authority and the Research School will maintain records of course attendees.

The Research School aims to lead the way in the use of evidence-based practice and to build and develop a community of teachers who work together collaboratively, critically, creatively and carefully to understand and improve the positive impact that they have on progress and achievement.

Full details of the courses on offer/booking link can be found here:

For any enquires about the Research School courses please contact Russell Spink [Director of the Stoke on Trent Research School]. or 01782 733119

School Governance

Funded training programmes for school governance leadership roles and clerks

The Department for Education is providing funded training programmes to improve the effectiveness of school governance. Due to our status as an Opportunity Area, some schools are prioritised for a higher rate of funding.  There are two programmes available:

Governance leadership development programme (for those in governance leadership roles, such as chairs, vice chairs or committee chairs)

  • This programme aims to develop the skills and effectiveness of governors in maintained schools and academies.
  • Because we are an Opportunity Area, some schools are eligible for a higher rate of funding, with up to £2000 of training available, which is expected to cover most of the cost of participation. You can find out if you are eligible for a higher rate of funding here.

Providers able to operate in Stoke-on-Trent:

Governance clerking development programme (for all school, academy or trust board clerks, including new clerks, who are currently supporting one or more boards).

  • This programme aims to support governance clerks to provide professional quality clerking, ensuring the efficient and effective functioning of governing boards
  • The programme provides sustainable and relevant peer-to-peer support networks, enabling encouragement, support and the sharing of good practice.
  • Each participant is eligible for £350 of funding, which is expected to cover most of the cost of participation.

Providers able to operate in Stoke-on-Trent:


Funding for both programmes is paid directly to the training provider. There is a full list of providers here. We expect that in most cases there will be no, or minimal, cost to individuals or boards to complete these programmes.

If you wish to apply for any of these programmes, please visit the links above for further information.

Please note that places may be limited, and are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

If you have any questions, get in touch with us at  or

The Stoke-on-Trent Opportunity Area Team



Updated list of NLEs and SLEs in Stoke-on-Trent

We have pulled together an updated list of all the city’s National Leaders of Education and Specialist Leaders of Education, which can be found here. The list will be regularly reviewed, but please do let us know via if you would like to suggest any changes or additions.