New headteacher standards and review of ITT published

Raising teaching standards lies at the heart of the government’s plan for education - and world-class, excellent school leaders are vital to driving this ambition forward. But while the education landscape has changed dramatically over the last 10 years, the standards we expect of our school leaders have not.

The revised standards, created by the profession, for the profession, are designed to empower and inspire heads, drive aspiration, promote excellence and reflect the greater decision-making powers heads now enjoy.

A review of the existing 2004 standards was conducted last year, led by Dame Dana Ross-Wawrzynski and assisted by other leading members of the profession with the aim of defining leadership standards that are applicable to all headteacher roles in the current educational landscape.

Rather than simply creating a set of baseline standards, the new ‘standards of excellence’ set out the skills, knowledge and behaviour headteachers should aspire to, including:

  • raising the bar for all pupils, overcoming disadvantage and instilling a strong sense of accountability in staff for the impact of their work on pupils’ success
  • boosting teacher quality through high-level training and sustained professional development
  • identifying talent and coaching current and aspiring leaders of the future

  • Education Secretary Nicky Morgan said:

    At the heart of our plan for education - at the heart of all great education systems - are great teachers and great teaching.

    But strong leadership in all our schools is absolutely crucial and a key part of securing the best outcomes for pupils. We already have many talented headteachers driving forward our programme of improvement and ensuring young people are prepared for life in modern Britain.

    That is why we want to champion these dedicated professionals who regularly go the extra mile for our children by providing them with aspirational standards of excellence that will support them to get the best of their staff and pupils

    I’d like to thank Dame Dana Ross-Wawrzynski and the reviewing panel for all their hard work.

    Dame Dana said:

    I am delighted as chair of the review to be able to announce the launch of the revised national headteacher standards. The review was a process which gave headteachers a genuine opportunity to review and set their own professional standards.

    The review group devised standards which are applicable to all headteacher roles in the current educational landscape, and will support the move to a self-improving school-led system. The review group hopes that these standards will inspire public confidence in headteachers, drive aspiration and excellence, and empower the profession.

    Russell Hobby, General Secretary of the National Assocation of Head Teachers (NAHT), said:

    It is important that headteachers and school leaders have a set of professional standards relevant to the modern state of the role. These highly aspirational standards will provide a solid foundation for professional development and dialogue. They also state proudly to the world what heads stand for and how they hold themselves to account.

    The Education Secretary has also welcomed a review by Sir Andrew Carter into initial teacher training (ITT). Sir Andrew’s report - also published today - highlights that the system in England is performing well but that more needs to be done to ensure all trainees receive some core grounding in the basics of classroom management and subject knowledge.

    In response the government has confirmed today that it will:

    ·         Sir Andrew said:

    ·         What really matters most in a child’s education is the quality of the teaching.

    ·         I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to lead this important review.

    ·         We have been inspired by the many examples of excellent training we have seen. I sincerely hope that our recommendations are taken forward by the sector and by government.


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