Specialist Leaders of Education

Specialist Leaders of Education are nationally validated as:

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. SLEs develop the leadership capacity of individuals and teams in other schools, using coaching or facilitation support that draws on their knowledge and expertise in their specialist area. The work of SLEs will contribute to raising standards and improving outcomes for children.

How can I become an SLE?

To become an SLE, you need to be an outstanding middle or senior school leader with a particular area of expertise. You must have the capacity, skills and commitment to support others in similar positions in other schools. Your own Head teacher must be happy for you to undertake outreach work.

The application process is hosted by the National College for Teaching and Leadership. We would advise you to check the Department for Education's SLE webpages for more information about applying.


Key Area of Expertise:

Leadership and management       

  •  Academies and Academy transition                                  
  • Leadership of continuing professional development (CPD)
  • School business management and financial management 
  • Leadership of curriculum

Pupil achievement 

  • Early years 
  • English
  • Geography
  • History 
  • Information and communication technology (ICT)
  • Maths
  • Modern foreign languages (MFL)
  • Music
  • Phonics
  • Physical education (PE)
  • Science
  • Special education needs (SEN)
  • Support for the most able pupils

Quality of teaching

  • Initial teacher training (ITT) and newly qualified teacher (NQT) development 

Behaviour and safety 

  • Behaviour and discipline
  • Attendance


The application round will be open from 14th June and close 20th June 2021.

To request support for your school, please complete an application form.