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Becoming a Specialist Leader of Education

What is a Specialist Leader of Education?

 SLEs are outstanding middle or senior leaders with at least two year’s leadership experience. 

They have a particular area of expertise and a successful track record of school improvement.  SLEs provide school-to-school support and peer-to-peer learning to senior and middle leaders in other schools.

 SLEs will:

  • have excellent interpersonal skills
  • be able to work sensitively and collaboratively with others
  • have a commitment to outreach work
  • understand what outstanding leadership practice in their area of specialism looks like and help other leaders to achieve it in their own context

 The SLE role focuses on building the leadership capacity of middle and senior leaders in other schools. This may be done in a variety of ways such as:

  • one-to-one peer coaching
  • facilitated group support
  • data analysis
  • coaching
  • joint action planning


SLE Information

More information about eligibility criteria, what’s involved and who can become an SLE is available on the DfE website at: