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Becoming a Specialist leader of Education

Specialist leaders of education (SLEs) are outstanding middle and senior leaders who have the skills to support individuals or teams in similar positions in other schools.They understand what outstanding leadership practice in their area of expertise looks like and are skilled in helping other leaders to achieve it in their own context. To become a specialist leader of education, you need to have been in a leadership role below the headteacher for at least 2 years. Your headteacher will be asked to confirm that you are in an appropriate role. Higher level teaching assistants are not eligible to apply. You can be from any type or phase of school  as long as your school has the capacity to release you to work in other schools. You must have at least one specialism from our areas of expertise, which are based on the 4 areas of focus for Ofsted.
Ofsted Focus Areas of Expertise
Leadership and management  Academies and academy transition; assessment; leadership of continuing professional development; school business management and financial management; leadership of curriculum
Pupil achievement  Art; closing the gap; Drama; Design and Technology; Early years; English; Geography; History; Information and communication technology; Computer Science; Maths; Modern foreign languages; Music; Phonics; Physical Education; Personal, Social and Health Education; Religious Education; Science; Special Educational Needs; Support for the most able pupils
Quality of teaching Initial teacher training and newly qualified teacher development
Behaviour and safety Behaviour and discipline; attendance
To be successful in your application, you should have:
  • a successful track record of working effectively within your own school and/or across a group of schools, or working with a range of leaders within a single school
  • evidence of successfully using coaching and/or facilitation skills to bring about sustainable improvements
  • excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • an understanding of what constitutes ‘outstanding’ in your field of expertise and the ability and confidence to communicate this
  • an understanding of how your specialism and skills can contribute to wider school improvement goals
  • an analytical approach in identifying and prioritising needs
  • the ability to set and establish new and innovative working practices
  • the ability to grow leadership capacity in others
You can also provide supporting evidence gained from completing leadership development opportunities such as: There is no cost to apply. Successful applicants will be entitled to some training at no cost to their school. However, the school will have to pay for associated travel or supply cover for the training.For more information click the link:   https://www.gov.uk/specialist-leaders-of-education-a-guide-for-potential-applicants

Application process

You can apply when we are recruiting. The Partnership has identified the priorities within their area and will recruit SLEs in accordance with our needs.We recommend that you apply for the priorities that match your specialism(s).You’ll need to contact the Partnership to obtain their recruitment priorities.  If you would like to know more about the Partnership, we recommended that you contact them to discuss your situation and opportunities before applying.  Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information at training@st-james.bolton.sch.uk 

SLE Recruitment - further details will be published in due course

Details of our next recruitment round will be published in due course.  If you have any queries do not hesitate to get in touch with the Train Teach Lead Partnership Manager, Lesley Trigger at training@st-james.bolton.sch.uk.   

Aspiring SLE Sessions

Details of the next session will be published in due course - if you have any queries please email training@st-james.bolton.sch.uk  

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