Merton Special Teaching Association

The National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership

We are proud to be part of the Ambition NPQ Alliance, delivering National Professional Qualifications (NPQs) in partnership with Ambition Institute, the graduate school for teachers, school leaders and system leaders. We design, manage and deliver a bespoke  NPQSL offer around the core NPQ curricula, content and resources that Ambition Institute provides. Ambition Institute also provides facilitator training and quality assurance to help us deliver the best possible development to participants. Ambition Institute, as the accredited licence holder, is also responsible for the assessment of all NPQ submissions. You can find out more about Ambition Institute, the Alliance and its outcomes by visiting their website. We work closely with Ambition Institute to ensure our offer meets all the requirements and metrics as set out by the Department for Education in the NPQ Quality Framework and the NPQ Content and Assessment Framework.

More information about our partnership can be found by accessing their Transparency Partner Guidance document

We deliver the Department for Education’s NPQSL, in partnership with Ambition Institute. Each NPQ – regardless of level – covers seven leadership behaviours and six competencies:

Leadership behaviours:

• Commitment • Collaboration • Personal drive • Resilience • Awareness • Integrity • Respect 


• Strategy and Improvement• Leading with Impact• Teaching and Curriculum Excellence• Managing Resources and Risk• Working in Partnership• Building Capacity

In order to complete your chosen NPQ you will be required to:

• Attend all training sessions and any other requirements set out by the provider.

• Complete an in-school project and submit a write-up of this project (showing how, through completion of this project, you have evidenced the required competencies and behaviours).

-This project must last for at least two terms.

-The NPQSL require completion of one project only

-You must submit your write-up and all evidence within 18 months of the start of your programme.

Please see the NPQ Content and Assessment Framework for more detail about your chosen NPQ, including assignments and placements.

To support you in the completion of your chosen NPQ our offer includes as standard:

• Expert-designed curriculum, content and resources which align to the required leadership behaviours and competencies, provided by Ambition Institute

• Minimum 18 hours of face-to-face, facilitated training delivered over at least two terms (but no more than 18 months)

• Two 360° reviews (at the beginning and end of the programme)

• Option of a Viva

• A network of peers and relevant experts

• Assessment support and full assessment of your final submission

• Trained and quality assured facilitators of whom at least 50% are serving school leaders

Our NPQSL Delivered in partnership with Ambition Institute

Programme structure and components: 6 face to face or online sessions lead by Merton school leaders

Programme duration: Taught sessions November 2021 - June 2021  (dates below)

Type and hours of study: Online sessions (possibility of face to face sessions if restrictions allow) 

Eligibility and application process and timelines: Applications with support of sponsor/headteacher to be made here:

Cost of programme including assessment: £800 per participant or £700 if more than one from the same school

Cohort size: up to 20

Who can apply?

You’ll be looking for professional development, but not aspiring to headship at this stage of your career. You should be in a leadership role with cross-school responsibilities, for example:

  • an experienced middle leader
  • a deputy head
  • a special educational needs co-ordinator (SENCO)
  • an advanced skills teacher
  • other senior staff

For both aspiring and serving senior leaders to receive their qualification, they will need to lead an improvement project across their school, lasting at least two terms, to reduce variation in pupil progress and attainment and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of teaching. Therefore, it is essential that this is something your school understands and will support when placing participants on the programme.


NPQSL participants will be assessed on a written account of the school improvement task which must demonstrate whole school impact of no more than 5000 words as well as a presentation of the school based project. 

Please note that it is an expectation that participants attend 8 out of 9 training sessions to pass this programme.

Facilitators: All facilitators have a broad experience in Primary and Secondary Settings (Alison Jerrard, Katharine Davies, Tina Harvey, Celia Dawson, Matt Ball)


Day 1: Wednesday 18th November 2020 (1.30pm - 5pm) - Leading influence, motivation and vision. Coaches briefing session (5pm)

Day 2: Wednesday 13th January 2021 (1.30pm - 5pm) - Leading Change: sustainable change management

Day 3: Wednesday 3rd February 2021 (9am - 4pm) - Leading Teaching and Learning: Improving classroom practice and Leading Data: Data informed leadership

Day 4: Wednesday 10th March 2021 (9am - 12.30am) - Leading curriculum: delivering curriculum excellence

Day 5: Wednesday 28th April 2021 (9am - 4pm) - Leading a school for all: inclusion and effective pastoral support & Leading teams and people: delivering through other

Day 6: Wednesday 16th June 2021 (9am - 4pm) - Leading staff development: Professional development and talent management & Leading school improvement: self-evaluation and strategic planning

Location: Perseid Upper School, Middleton Road,  Morden, Surrey, SM4 6RU or via online learning platform

For further information please see the NPQSL flyer

Bookings for this cohort have now closed. Please contact below for future dates.

 Any questions please email  or phone 02086489737 (Upper School option)

Ambition Institute Policies

To access Ambition Institute’s policies, please see below: