Hundreds of would-be headteachers are to be trained for the job by the Church of England over the next three years.
The Church said it has been given government accreditation for its national programme for developing school leaders.
Some 300 school leaders are expected to take the qualification over a three-year period starting in January, with training including school placements and visits, seminars, online learning and mentoring.
The Church of England Professional Qualification for Headship has already been running for a year in the South East, South West and North of England, and was previously accredited by Liverpool Hope University.
It has now been awarded National Professional Qualification status by the Department for Education.
'Sharing skills and expertise'
The Reverend Nigel Genders, the Church's chief education officer, said: "We believe that the leadership of a school is critical to the academic performance of pupils and how they flourish as individuals.
“To work with the Department for Education to empower and inspire school leaders in their vital roles is a privilege.
“We look forward to sharing our skills and expertise as well as our vision for education with school leaders from across the country."
The Church of England has 4,700 schools, collectively teaching a million pupils, making it the largest single provider of education in the country.
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