Widening headship pool is our aim

5th February 2010 at 00:00

There are a few issues I want to address about Kenny Frederick's comment piece "Tomorrow's leaders are stifled by today's woes" (January 22).

In 2008, after wide consultation and the profession's agreement, the National College tightened the criteria for the National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH) to ensure candidates have the skills and expertise necessary to attain headship within 18 months.

By focusing resources on those closest to headship, we are ensuring value for money and creating a bigger pool of ambitious candidates, ready to take up headship as soon as they graduate. It is not the case that assistant heads are excluded from applying. Just as Kenny plays a vital role inspiring and preparing her senior team for headship, so NPQH provides high-quality, professional development so that all first-time heads are equipped to take up the demands of the role.

For those not ready for NPQH, we offer other leadership development programmes. I welcome feedback such as Kenny's and can reassure her that we will continue to review our provision so that it meets the needs of all school leaders.

Steve Munby, Chief executive, National College for Leadership of Schools and Children's Services.

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