Aldridge Education


Easy Read

NPQ Spotlight

A Spotlight on… The NPQ for Leading Teaching with Jack McDonald from Aldridge UTC@MediaCity.

In this new blog series, we will be shining a spotlight on the NPQ courses we have on offer in partnership with Teach First, including showcasing some of our fantastic programme members.


Effective subject leadership plays a crucial role in shaping the quality of education and the overall success of students. Classroom practitioners strive daily to make a positive impact on students' lives, and many aspire to become the future leaders in education. At Aldridge Education, we share a deep passion for nurturing these aspiring leaders and equipping them with the necessary tools to excel through the National Professional Qualifications for Leading Teaching (NPQLT) in partnership with Teach First. Our commitment lies in delivering high-quality professional development, fostering valuable networking opportunities, and promoting evidence-based instruction for new and aspiring leaders of learning. By investing in the leadership pipeline, we aim to empower educators across the country to drive positive change and create a brighter future for learners.


Jack McDonald started his NPQLT with us in February 2022, driven by a lack of leadership experience and wanting to invest in his own professional development. He craved making the next step in his career and felt that an NPQ would deepen his knowledge and skills as well as strengthen any future applications for leadership positions. He chose this particular NPQ because he is passionate about leading teaching, particularly when it comes to his specialism in secondary Science. The NPQLT is designed to develop those who are new or aspiring key stage, phase or subject leaders and so was the perfect choice for Jack’s next steps.

Jack was thrilled to pass his NPQLT this spring and already feels the course has had a positive impact on himself and his students.



 I have a greater understanding of all things to do with leading teaching and supporting other members of staff and now feel ready to take a step into leadership. I also learned so much about classroom practice so even though my job hasn't changed yet, I think that I am a better classroom practitioner as a result.
Jack McDonald


The NPQLT (National Professional Qualification in Leading Teaching) offers a comprehensive curriculum which, as Jack highlighted, not only teaches skills to lead others but also be an expert practitioner in your own classroom. Key foci across the course include school culture, emphasising the importance of creating a positive and inclusive environment, understanding how pupils learn, curriculum design and implementation, adaptive teaching strategies and addressing assessment practices to ensure accurate and meaningful evaluation of student progress. Professional development and implementation planning are also explored as integral components, empowering leaders to foster growth and drive impactful change within their educational settings. By covering these essential areas, the NPQLT equips leaders with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in leading teaching and promoting continuous improvement within schools.


Of these elements, Jack is particularly enjoying the impact of the course on his ability to be an effective instructional coach, modelling good practice in his classroom whilst leading another practitioner on their own journey of improvement.

As well as rich and insightful curriculum content, the NPQLT is thoughtfully designed to accommodate the schedules of busy teachers. It utilises a combination of online seminars, flexible online learning modules, and in person conferences to ensure accessibility and convenience for participants. Jack will attest to the strength of this structure.




I really loved getting to network with teachers in other schools and other subjects; I find that it's hard to do that as we're all so busy day-to-day so getting the opportunity in the monthly online seminars and the conferences has been really valuable. Also, the Growing Together team and facilitators have all be so supportive and helpful throughout my NPQ experience - I really can't thank them enough.

Jack McDonald


We wish Jack the best of luck making the next steps in his career and feel privileged to be a small part of his journey.

Does this sound like the next step in your career? Or could there be a different leadership course for you? Find out more information about our courses and how to apply here: or get in touch with a member of the Growing Together team at

By joining one of our NPQ courses, such as the NPQ in Leading Teaching, educators can unlock their leadership potential and make a significant impact on education, empowering students and shaping the future of learning. We offer a range of NPQ courses, including NPQLT (Leading Teaching), NPQLL (Leading Literacy), NPQLTD (Leading Teacher Development), NPQLBC (Leading Behaviour and Culture), NPQSL (Senior Leadership), and NPQH (Headship). So, no matter where you are in your career, we have a course that's right for you. 

Working in
partnership with