NCSL director Steve Munby argues that safety for children and young people at school comes first - even before teaching and learning.
"The challenge and the dilemma is: how do we face outward to the community and focus on the five Every Child Matters outcomes and the whole child while at the same time focus inside the school on the curriculum and on the quality of teaching and learning," he says.
"If we get it wrong, we could lose sight of the standards agenda and get caught up in a tangle of bureaucracy and those children and young people who need help and support the most will not receive it."
The NCSL is working on a series of programmes and events to support schools and headteachers with the children's agenda.
The Blackburn project is part of a pilot Multi-Agency Team Development Programme (MATDP), which is expected to be available more widely in September 2006.
Starting this month, a series of NCSL "Better together" seminars will focus on community leadership through relationship building. In January the headteacher's qualification, the NPQH, will have a new module, "Leadership in extended schools".
Meanwhile, an entirely new programme focused on extended schools will be piloted by the college next year. There is also the National Professional Qualification for Integrated Centre Leadership (NPQICL).
This programme (equivalent to one-third of a masters degree) is aimed at developing the skills of leaders of integrated children's centres.
* www.ncsl.org.ukcommunityleadership Please send information and ideas for this page to email@example.com