Newly Appointed and Acting Headteachers Development Programme

The Newly Appointed and Acting Headteacher Programme is available to all newly appointed and acting Headteachers in Wales. It is delivered by the Regional Consortia and their partners which include Local Authorities and Higher Education Institutions. This programme has been endorsed by the National Academy of Educational Leadership. 

The programme provides a common entitlement with a degree of flexibility to meet the specific needs and contexts of colleagues in different settings and geographical areas. It is designed to ensure that, wherever you are as a new Headteacher in Wales, you have access to the same high quality professional learning as your colleagues.

The key aspects of the programme are:

  • It subscribes in its design to the Regional Professional Learning Model
  • The content is based on the Professional Standards for Teaching and Leadership, Developing Schools in Wales as Learning Organisations and Education in Wales: Our National Mission
  • The duration of the programme and sequencing of learning activities is consistent across Wales
  • There are common expectations about the progress that will be made by participants and how this will impact on their leadership practice.

Although a national programme, it will be coordinated through the regions and the key contact details for the delivery of this programme in your area are shown below:



Jendy Hillier
Alison Tovey


Peter Jenkins
Deb Woodward  


Tom Fanning


Gareth Davies
Anwen Gwilym

The Newly Appointed and Acting Headteachers Programme is written for individuals who are newly appointed to post although there are elements in the programme which may also be useful to experienced Headteachers who are new to a LA and/or a region.

The programme has been designed to support New Headteachers to obtain the information they need to work effectively on a local basis along with providing individual development focusing on the knowledge and skills required to become a successful Headteacher.

The programme takes place over a two-year period and requires a commitment of the equivalent of eight days during this time. Formal accreditation is available and participants can opt for this.

All activities undertaken as part of this programme are delivered in Welsh, English or bilingually.

Registration is through a national application process which requires the endorsement of the individual’s Chair of Governors.

The programme is structured in three phases:

Phase 1: pre-programme work including a formal handover and an individual ‘self analysis’ against the Formal Leadership Standards

Phase 2: Year 1 of headship. This will consist of a five-day development programme focusing on gaining the local information they need, and the knowledge and skills required to develop their school as a learning organisation

Phase 3: Year 2 of headship. This is one day where participants will share with colleagues a particular aspect of school improvement they have undertaken and also how they are building capacity within their schools.

Each candidate is allocated a Leadership Coach and membership of a peer group for support throughout the programme.


The expectation is that the programme will be completed by all New and Acting Headteachers across Wales.

Newly appointed Headteachers and colleagues appointed to the role of Acting Headteacher should complete the registration form.

Please note: Acting Headteachers are eligible if they are expected to be in post for at least two terms.