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Starts on 01/11/2023

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18 months

Designed for

Aspiring executive leaders

Executive leaders


Click here to view the UCL flyer

Our NPQEL offers a tailored programme of professional learning for the following colleagues:

  • School leaders who are, or are aspiring to be, an executive headteacher or have a school trust CEO role with responsibility for leading several schools.

The programme will support you and your setting as follows:

  • Create professionally confident leaders who can lead at scale.
  • Grow the next generation of leaders with the skills and knowledge to use the evidence base for the benefit of children, young people and wider communities.
  • Retain and develop the best teachers and leaders who are excellent, collaborative role models for their schools and communities.
  • Inspire leaders who can harness the power of rich learning environments for children and young people no matter the current circumstances



In order to complete NPQEL, you will be required to:

  • Attend all programme sessions.
  • Complete an implementation project based on your current work.
  • Complete the summative case study style assessment.


To support you in the completion of NPQEL, our offer includes as standard:

  • An engaging curriculum which blends face-to-face, online and self-study.
  • A supportive facilitator and peer network.
  • A national cohort to enable the education system’s most senior colleagues to learn with and from each other, led centrally by UCL Centre for Educational Leadership.

Dates, times & locations of training sessions

February 2023 – July 2024 (18 months)

October 2023 – March 2025 (18 months)

Face-to-face sessions will be held at venues throughout the UK.

Please note this NPQ is delivered nationally via UCL and sessions are not hosted at The Education Exchange.



NPQEL facilitators are experienced trust leaders and expert facilitators. The NPQEL programme is run centrally by our lead provider, UCL Institute of Education, in a programme involving participants from across the UK.

Next Steps

Apply now

Register for an NPQ with the DfE: Register for a National Professional Qualification ( and choose UCL when prompted during registration.

Applications are now open for Spring 2024.

UCL will send you an application form. Please choose Exchange Teaching Hub as your delivery partner when prompted on the form.

For further information: Download our flier on how to appy (click here) or visit UCL’s website (click here).

For an exploratory conversation about which NPQ is right for you, contact

Further Info

Eligibility and funding

  • Full scholarship funding, with no cost to the participant, for NPQ: Executive Leadership is available to those who meet the following criteria:
    • Are, or are aspiring to be, an executive head teacher or have a school trust CEO role with responsibility for leading several schools.
    • Work in a state funded school and state funded organisations that offer 16-19 places in England.
    • Work in independent special schools.
    • Work in hospital schools.
    • Work in virtual schools.
    • Work in young offenders’ institutions.

The cost is £4099 for those outside the scholarship criteria.

Additional funding available

The DfE targeted support fund gives a grant payment of £200 per participant to settings with 1-600 pupils, for every teacher or leader they employ who participates in an NPQ.

Organisations that are eligible for NPQ scholarship funding will also be eligible for targeted support funding (providing they are a setting with 1-600 pupils), with the exception of non-school-based early years settings (group-based providers and childminders), virtual schools, hospital schools not already included in other categories of eligible organisations, and young offender institutions.

Please note that school/setting/self-funded applicants will not be eligible for targeted support funding

Current funding arrangements will continue during 2022-24.


Deferral or Withdrawal from an NPQ Programme

Only in exceptional circumstances may a participant request either a deferral or withdrawal from their programme. Participants should be aware that there is a process to follow which is outlined in UCL’s NPQ Deferral and Withdrawal Policy.

A participant considering withdrawal from an NPQ Programme should be aware that it is Department for Education Policy to only fund an NPQ course for a participant once. This means that a participant who starts a Department for Education funded NPQ course, and then withdraws from that course, will not be funded again for the same programme.