Updated NPQ Scholarship Eligibility Criteria

As part of the government’s long-term education recovery plan, £184 million of new funding for National Professional Qualifications (NPQs) was announced in June 2021 to be spent over the course of this parliament.

Register for an NPQ with the Hub | Register your interest here.


Since autumn 2021, teachers and leaders employed in state-funded schools, as well as those employed in state-funded organisations in England that offer education to 16-19 year olds, have been able to access DfE funded training scholarships for all NPQs. We are now extending this funding for the next two years, to support participants undertaking NPQs in 22/23 and 23/24.

From autumn 2022, organisations eligible to access scholarships will include:

  • independent special schools.
  • virtual schools (Local Authority run organisations that support the education of children in care).
  • hospital schools not already included in other categories of eligible organisations.
  • young offender institutions.


Applicants from these organisations who feel they should be eligible for funding should contact continuing professionaldevelopment@digital.education.gov.uk for more information.

In addition, Early years practitioners and leaders working in the following settings in England will be eligible for scholarship funding from the DfE for the NPQEYL only:

  • childcare providers registered on the Ofsted Early Years Register, providing childcare on non-domestic premises.
  • childcare providers registered on the Ofsted Early Years Register, providing childcare on domestic premises.
  • childminders registered on the Ofsted Early Years Register.
  • childminders registered with an Ofsted-registered childminder agency, caring for early years children. As with the existing funding criteria, lead providers should assess the suitability of early years participants for this NPQ.


As with the existing funding criteria, lead providers should assess the suitability of early years participants for this NPQ. NPQ for Leading Literacy (NPQLL) & NPQ for Early Years Leadership (NPQEYL) To ensure NPQs continue to offer the best possible support to teachers and leaders wanting to expand their knowledge and skills, we are introducing 2 3 additional NPQs which will be available from autumn 2022: NPQLL & NPQEYL.

The NPQLL is designed to support school literacy leaders to have a secure understanding of the importance of literacy and recognise the influence it has on pupils’ future academic achievement, wellbeing and success in life. It will develop leaders’ expertise in the teaching of reading and writing and enable them to share their expertise effectively to improve literacy outcomes for every child.

The NPQ in Early Years Leadership, which will support leaders to develop expertise in leading high-quality education and care, as well as in effective staff and organisational management, working with and through their colleagues so that every child gets the best start in life.


To find out more and register for an NPQ with the Hub, click here


Targeted Support Funding for Small Schools

The DfE are introducing additional payments to small schools, to enable them to support their teachers and leaders to undertake NPQs. The Targeted Support Fund gives a grant payment of £200 per participant to settings with 1-600 pupils, for every teacher or leader they employ who participates in an NPQ.

Organisations that are eligible for NPQ scholarships will also be eligible for targeted support funding, with the exception of non-school based early years settings (group-based providers and childminders), virtual schools, hospital schools not already included in other categories of eligible organisations, and young offender institutions. 

Early Headship Coaching Offer (EHCO)

Alongside the reformed suite of NPQs, the DfE introduced an Additional Support Offer (ASO) for new headteachers from autumn 2021. The DfE have made two changes to the Additional Support Offer with immediate effect:

  • re-branding the programme to Early Headship Coaching Offer (EHCO).
  • extending the eligibility from the first two years (24 months of headship) in a headship role to the first five years in a headship role.

The offer is an unassessed support package and is based on the latest available evidence on what makes an effective headteacher. The offer is designed for those early on in their headship role and will include structured support elements such as group coaching and networking opportunities. This change is being implemented based on sector feedback. ,

To find out more and register for an NPQ with the Hub, click here