Improving a school is fundamentally about developing the knowledge and expertise of its people. This is the principle that the Teacher Development Trust puts at the heart of our work to develop school leaders. We’re the national charity for effective professional development and our team includes experienced leadership experts, curriculum designers and deliverers. Our NPQ coalition includes partnerships with national bodies, schools and experts, such as the NAHT, Forum Strategy, Greenshaw Learning Trust and River Learning Trust, Kat Howard and Claire Hill (authors of the book Symbiosis: The Curriculum and the Classroom) and Jonny Uttley (co-author of Putting Staff First).
These are brand new NPQ frameworks and this is the moment to re-shape the profession. We’ve been part of the DfE development of these frameworks since their conception, as well as having played a major role in building the DfE CPD Standards and the Early Career Framework. We’re looking for Delivery Partners who want to be national thought leaders, placing professional learning front and centre in sustainable, school-led improvement. We’re designing our qualifications as routes into the Chartered College of Teaching’s programmes and accreditations, strengthening collegiality and professional identity.
We’re applying the latest research in instructional design. Participants will be guided through a blended learning experience where they can flexibly engage with core materials on our central platform. You will support and guide participants as they progress through the core materials, engaging them in discussion in online forums, getting to know them in advance of virtual and in-person sessions that you run. This gives you space to focus on exploration of ideas, respond to local needs, problem-solve, network, support and debate – all with the support of centrally designed guides and materials. Finally, all participants from across our national network of Delivery Partners will come together for termly, national, virtual forums, to inspire participants with the best system wisdom.
Key curriculum themes
The new frameworks are rich with knowledge and skills. We weave five big ideas throughout the learning:
- Effective communication and teamwork: the skills and habits of getting people to work well together, being understood, working effectively;
- Leadership clarity & team alignment: simplicity at the core of great leadership, with everyone understanding their role;
- Change management & implementation: overcoming resistance, gaining buy-in and ensuring sustainability and fidelity;
- Professional learning: the detailed mechanisms that underpin teams where everyone improves;
- Self management: the self-awareness and skill to maintain wellbeing, prioritise time and bring the best understanding of yourself to each leadership challenge.
Curriculum Design principles
Our curriculum design breaks down the content in an accessible way, using the most up to date evidence about instructional design, cognitive science and behavioural psychology.
We have six key principles that inform our curriculum design:
- Learning activities will allow participants to hold a mirror up to their current setting, understanding the underlying mechanisms, reflecting on what works, understanding the history of change;
- Participants will be given a window into other settings, broadening their understanding of leadership in different phases, contexts and areas to help them respond to a range of needs;
- Case studies will focus on narrated expertise, not just showing what works, but the expert thinking underpinning it and how to apply and practice it themselves. The best leaders get to work alongside other great leaders and this approach will allow them to feel they are virtually mentored by some of the most effective leaders in the system;
- A focus on implementation & change will challenge participants to repeatedly apply learning to real-life problems, thinking in detail how their skills of team-leadership, communication and change management can overcome doubts, managing up and down to gain buy-in, with ideas that can be applied in real roles;
- A differentiated learning journey that builds on key learner personas, using detailed examples of real participants to help facilitators understand each learners’ needs, including their home life and learning environment, their school context, their own career aims and worries;
- A continued focus on practice challenges, equipping participants with the necessary knowledge, habits and skill to overcome the most common and difficult situations that they are likely to encounter.
Delivery Partner Role
Our intention is to start small. We’re not looking to be the biggest provider, we believe that a small group of key partners will help us shape our offer better for this brand new suite of NPQs. We will be carefully selecting partners who are really aligned with the core ethos of our work, who are skilled in exceptional quality delivery and who are excited about national thought leadership. We are also looking for strong track records in NPQ recruitment at multiple levels.
Between us in our partnership, we will be working closely with you to:
- Facilitate highly effective local recruitment, supplying you with key materials, marketing copy and resources to use with local leaders and schools. We can offer flexibility for co-branding in some of these;
- Recruit, quality assure and train the very best facilitators, using an in-house training programme that not only covers key content knowledge but also the process of effectively navigating online facilitation and using that to plan and deliver excellent local virtual and face-to-face sessions;
- Provide a high quality learning platform where you have dedicated, TDT-designed course spaces for your local cohorts, with our central team dealing with enrolment, contracting and finance;
- Provide opportunities for you to contribute your own key case studies and exemplars which can be shared across the national cohorts;
- Create powerful peer review across Delivery Partners, with regular meetings to review live training, participant learning and feedback, using this to inform ongoing improvement and development across our network;
- Create a national movement that puts people development at the heart of leadership and school improvement, ensuring regular discussions of the key research and thinking at major national events, on social media and in sector media;
- Support your local delivery, where we supply, maintain and administer the online training platform, and where you source and book your own chosen local venues for face to face training;
- Carry out assessment across the national cohorts, building in moderation and assessor training.