The new National Institute of Teaching has been awarded a government contract to develop “the next generation of courageous, pioneering” academy trust chief executives.
The government’s flagship teacher training provider – founded by Star Academies, the Harris Federation, Outwood Grange Academies Trust and Oasis academy trusts – will run the year-long multi-academy trust CEO training programme.
Ministers promised to launched the programme as part of its 2022 schools white paper.
Announcing the programme, NIoT chief executive Melanie Renowden (pictured) said MAT leadership is “starting to change – as high-profile, successful trust CEOs move on from their roles and as more schools join trusts, new trust leaders must step up.
“We need to develop the next generation of courageous, pioneering people who will respond to the new wave of challenges and opportunities that are coming the way of all our schools.
“Their roles will be more important than ever, supporting the education system to deal with teacher recruitment and retention, financial sustainability and closing the attainment gap.”
In a press release, NIoT said its founding CEOs have an “impressive track record of nurturing future” bosses. It will deliver the programme through its existing networks, as well as new partnerships with leading trusts.
The first cohort of 25 participants will start in February 2024, with a second 50-strong cohort “following later”. Recruitment will begin in autumn this year.
Participants will be given one-to-one coaching with a “successful” CEO, alongside “immersive learning” such as shadowing. There will be online self-study and in-person conferences.
The Department for Education ran a market engagement exercise for potential suppliers last year for the up to £2.8 million contract.
However, in an update today, DfE said it decided to use the existing framework agreement for NIoT and contract the School-Led Development Trust (SLDT) to deliver two cohorts.
This is part of NIoT’s “overall scope of requirements to deliver the golden thread of teacher and leadership development in the education sector”, DfE said, adding its own policies state it should access existing frameworks “wherever possible” to help with costs. A contract value has not yet been published.
The initial contract documents also said teaching would begin this September, rather than next year as announced today.
Sir Dan Moynihan, Harris CEO and SLDT chair, said the “impressive programme allows new and aspiring CEOs to see behind the scenes in large school trusts, helping them to make connections between what they are learning and how to implement it in real life”.
Baroness Barran, academies minister, said government is “delighted” to work with NIoT and “highly effective” CEOs, adding: “Together, we will deliver a sector-leading programme that is tailored to the needs of new CEOs but continues to draw on the expertise that already exists in the system.
“I look forward to welcoming the next generation of leaders following their graduation from the programme and anticipate the impact they will have on ensuring every child receives a great education.”
Government had been warned the programme could “seriously undermine” existing providers and risk breaching competition rules.