Coaching & Leadership Development

Early Headship Programme – Subsidised Support for School Leaders

Commences in November 2020

A heavily subsidised 1:1 School Leadership development programme for NEU Heads & College leaders in the early stages of their careers.

Download the Programme Outline 

We are now accepting expressions of interest for the next cohort of this programme which commences in November 2020. 



Over the last few years the pressure and complexity of the Headteacher role has grown exponentially. 

Whilst the challenges of the role have intensified, there has been a marked demise in the care, trust and integrity with which Headteachers are treated. This has been exacerbated by the diminished capacity of LA’s to offer advice and support.  The result of which has been, Headteachers;

 – Sacrificing the meeting of their own needs to meet the needs of those they serve.

– Constantly giving without building moments into their leadership life to replenish themselves

– Increased incidences of burnout and high attrition rates

It is clearly evident that new approaches need to be adopted, to enable Headteachers to rise above the challenges of their roles and maintain their ability to lead and inspire others.

The NEU recognises the detrimental impact of the increased pressures that Head teachers are facing. Which is why the NEU has partnered with Integrity Coaching to offer a new development programme for Heads.

It is specifically for Heads who are early in their careers and want to build a strong foundation for securing their emotional wellbeing and sense of vocation and purpose.

The programme is heavily subsidised by the NEU and combines 1:1 coaching with face to face development days.

At a time when school budgets are under considerable strain, this means that Heads can access support that they might otherwise not have been able to afford.

Who is this offer for?


This year long development programme is for NEU Heads and College leaders in the early stages of their careers, or NEU deputy Heads who are looking to move into Headship.

– Strengthen their personal development through deepening their understanding of themselves and requirements of the leadership role

–  Increase their skill set and ability to bring out the best in themselves and others

–  Explore how to rise above the demands of the role in ways that leave them open to continual personal growth and development

– Develop strategies for maintaining their own self-care and well-being, whilst also supporting others

–  Engage with their role, with a deeper sense of meaning, purpose and identity, even in moments of crisis



Individuals who attend this programme will benefit from…

– An increased ability to respond with deeper levels of self-awareness and understanding to the demands of the role

–  Greater confidence and skill in managing one’s own emotions and the emotions of others

– New insights and knowledge as to how individuals truly make it the leadership role their own

– How leaders can learn to make the leadership role truly make their own

– Understanding the personal narratives that have shaped their career/leadership pathway

– A solid understanding of what well-being means for senior leaders and how to survive and thrive in the role

Programme Structure


The Early Headship Programme consists of three elements:

 1. Three face to face days

2. Three 1:1 coaching sessions

3. One half-day closing evaluation/celebration event

Face-to-Face Days

Viv Grant and Integrity Coaching Associates will deliver three face to face development days designed to help Heads develop the skills, behaviours and strategies that can support them in their leadership roles.

Half-Day Evaluation

There will also be a half-day evaluation at the end of the programme for delegates to share key learning from the programme and identify personal strategies for sustaining growth.

1:1 Coaching Sessions

Each delegate will receive three coaching sessions to build on the outcomes of the face-to-face days and provide a confidential space for Heads to explore challenges within their roles and find meaningful solutions for addressing them.

“Even if you run an Outstanding school, there is so much to be gained from coaching. I am very grateful to the NEU for the opportunity”


Headteacher, NEU Programme Cohort 2018/2019

Download the Programme Outline 

Programme Content

Day 1


Key Focus: Being the leader you want to be

By the end of this day, individuals will learn:

–  Why in our current educational climate, leaders need to engage with the role of headship/college leadership differently if they are to survive and thrive

–  The impact their leadership narratives have on their capacity to rise above the challenges of the role

– The relationship between meaning, identity and purpose and their own concepts of self and well-being

London – Thursday 5th November 2020

Manchester – Wednesday 4th November 2020

Day 2


Key Focus: Self-awareness, well-being and why they matter

By the end of this day, individuals will learn:

– How to recognise and address the aspects of the headteacher/college leader role that impact on confidence levels

– How to work successfully with their areas for development and turn them into strengths

– How to identify and overcome potential leadership blind spots

London: Thursday 4th February 2021

Manchester: Thursday 11th February 2021

Day 3


Key Focus: Building resilience as a leader and with your SLT

By the end of this day, individuals will learn:

– The key characteristics of resilient leaders

–  How to develop these characteristics within themselves and their teams

· The processes individuals and organisations adopt to keep levels of resilience high

London: Wednesday 20th May 2021

Manchester: Wednesday 3rd June 2021



Key Focus: Self-awareness, well-being and why they matter

By the end of this day, individuals will have had opportunity to:

– Share key learnings from the programme

– Identify personal strategies for sustaining growth and development

– Form professional networks of collaboration and support between programme attendees

London: Thursday 1st July 2021

Manchester: Thursday 8th July 2021

If you’d like to learn more or express your interest in being part of this programme, please follow the link above to visit the application page.

About Integrity Coaching

The programme will be delivered by Integrity Coaching. Integrity Coaching is the UK’s leading provider of coaching and leadership development services for headteachers and senior school leaders.

Led by former Head teacher, Viv Grant, the company is committed to providing coaching services for school leaders to help them overcome the distinct pressures of their roles, so that their stress levels are reduced and they are able to maintain their ability to:

– Lead and inspire others

– Stay focused on their vision and values

– Maximise the performance of both their staff and pupils.

– Maximise their ability to impact on future generations

If you’d like to apply to be part of this programme, please follow the link above.

To help you develop your courage, resilience and determination, our coaching process focuses on four key areas…



clarity about what you want for yourself and your school



Strengthening your moral purpose and ability to make the right (and sometimes tough) decisions



Creating positive beliefs about what can be achieved, to help realise your own strengths and capabilities



Embedding new behaviours to support the development of excellence in yourself and others

History of the Programme


This offer was first run as a pilot scheme back in 2016-2017 by the NUT as a values-based initiative aimed at helping to nurture the vocational vitality and emotional well-being of our leaders.


Very positive feedback from both the pilot and subsequent cohorts has demonstrated the importance of such programmes and how they help to support leadership effectiveness, personal development and in turn, school performance.


Meanwhile, the powerful impact of the previous programme cohort was also highlighted in a research evaluation by Leeds Beckett University, demonstrating once again to the NEU the crucial role that coaching plays as a form of leadership support.


If you’d like to download the full report, please follow the link below…

Read the Report

“I hadn’t realised until now, just how important it is to have a safe space to talk about my feelings and the stresses of the role. God knows where I would have been without it!”

“Coaching has given me more than I had anticipated or expected. Invest in yourself. It’s worth it. It has helped me to overcome what can sometimes feel like the most isolating job in the world.”

“Even if you run an Outstanding school there is so much to be gained from coaching. I am very grateful to the NEU for the opportunity”

Click below to find out more about what our clients say about the benefit of our services…

Read our Testimonials and Case Studies

Learn how the Early Headship Programme can support you in your Role…


If you want to find out if the programme is right for your school or if you have any queries, you can now book a free call with the lead programme facilitator Viv Grant to learn more…


Book a Call with Viv Grant