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The Bishop Wheeler Catholic Academy Trust

Career Pathways

Our aim is to provide a structured career development pathway for all BWCAT Staff, from Initial Teacher Training to Executive Leadership.  We work with a range of partners, including the Diocese of Leeds, the Catholic Education Service, the Church of England Foundation for Educational Leadership and Leeds Trinity University, supporting career development and progression for all who work in our schools.

Initial Teacher Training


Our work with a range of ITT providers, ensures the best possible start to the carers of our trainee teachers.  This, in addition to the work within the Early Career Framework, provides a three year structured package of outstanding support and development. 

The Early Career Framework (ECF)


Collaboration between BWCAT schools, is enhancing the delivery of the Early Career Framework.  The ECF forms part of a high-quality two-year induction programme for newly qualified teachers. 

Transforming the support and development offer for teachers at the start of their career, the ECF has a clear focus on the benefits of high-quality mentoring. Each Early Career Teacher (ECT) works intensively with a carefully chosen mentor who is given the time and has a proven track record to effectively carry out the mentor role. Mentors provide effective targeted feedback and support, ensuring that the ECT understands and applies the knowledge and skills set out in the framework.

National Professional Qualifications


BWCAT is proud to work as a delivery partner for the Church of England Foundation for Educational Leadership to deliver the suite of NPQs.  We work with our partners, including All Saints, York and Leeds Trinity University to offer the following opportunities:

  • NPQ in Headship (NPQH)
  • NPQ in Executive Leadership (NPQEL)
  • NPQ in Senior Leadership (NPQSL)
  • NPQ in Leading Behaviour and Culture (NPQLBC)
  • NPQ in Leading Teaching (NPQLT)
  • NPQ in Early Years Leadership (NPQEYL)
  • NPQ in Leading Literacy (NPQLL)
  • NPQ Leading Teacher Development (NPQLTD)
  • NPQ Leading Primary Maths (NPQLPM)

Working with the Church of England Foundation for Educational Leadership, in partnership with the Catholic Education Service, provides the added benefits of:

  • Small group expert coaching for every leader on every programme, in partnership with Chartered College of Teaching and Leadership Matters
  • Learning alongside peers with shared commitment to vision-driven education
  • Expert facilitators from high-performing MATs/schools, Teaching School Hubs supported by leading academics bringing the research base alive
  • Support for your wellbeing and personal growth through our extensive Peer Support
    Networks, and Diocesan Education teams

Further information regarding our range of NPQs, can be accessed by the following link:

Standard NPQs - Foundation For Educational Leadership (cefel.org.uk)


Feedback from staff, indicates that they appreciate the face-to-face networking opportunities provided by our NPQs, enabling them to come together and collaborate, having dedicated time to reflect on, refine and develop their practice.

The Early Career Framework and the combination of National Professional Qualifications, are just examples of the training opportunities provided to staff, as part of a structured career pathway within BWCAT.  The attached diagram, provides a more detailed summary of the opportunities available, including training that is specific to working in and leading Catholic schools.

BWCAT Career Pathway infographic