Teaching Schools

Teaching Schools

What are Teaching Schools?

Teaching School Alliances

A teaching school alliance is led by a teaching school and include schools that are benefiting from support, as well as alliance deliverers who lead some aspects of training and development. Alliance deliverers may include:

  • other schools from any phase or sector
  • universities
  • academy chains
  • local authorities
  • dioceses
  • private sector organisations

A teaching school alliance may decide to work with other alliances to share knowledge and resources as a teaching school network.

Teaching Schools

Types of Teaching School Alliance

Alliances can be set up in 3 different ways. They are:

  • single alliance – 1 teaching school leading 1 teaching school alliance
  • job-share alliance – 2 small or special schools jointly leading 1 teaching school alliance
  • multiple alliance – 2 or more teaching schools leading 1 alliance

Alliances with more than one teaching school will agree between them:

  • the roles and responsibilities for each teaching school and their alliance deliverers
  • who is accountable for the success criteria and performance against each of the teaching school delivery areas
  • the governance arrangements

The Department of Education require evidence that all the teaching schools within an alliance make an appropriate level of contribution. This makes it possible to identify the individual efforts that make up the alliance’s performance whenever its activity is reviewed.

As a teaching school, you will identify, develop and co-ordinate expertise for the benefit of pupils across a network of schools, resulting in:

  • better results for pupils
  • fewer poorly performing schools
  • more good and outstanding schools
  • a self-improving and sustainable system

Roles of Teaching Schools

Teaching schools have an important role to play in a school-led system and school improvement. Teaching schools are centres of excellence, taking a more focused role that prioritises:

  • co-ordinating and providing high-quality school-led initial teacher training (ITT)
  • providing high-quality school-to-school support to spread excellent practice, particularly to schools that need it most
  • providing evidence-based professional and leadership development for teachers and leaders across their network

In order to ensure a self-improving, school-led system, teaching schools are required to operate by the following principles:

Effective Delivery

Each teaching school alliance effectively delivers across all 3 areas of core activity: ITT; continuing professional development (CPD) and leadership development; school-to-school support.


In order to ensure credibility and high impact of all teaching schools, they must adhere to requirements set by the DfE and co-operate with necessary reporting processes.

System leadership and engagement

Teaching schools build an effective alliance of schools, and work strategically with other schools and providers within their regional and sub-regional networks to ensure every school can engage in school-led improvement.

Continuous improvement

Each teaching school is required to pursue continuous improvement supported by the peer review process in order to develop and achieve/sustain maturity of provision.