Principled Leadership Programme

Programme Information

The Principled Leadership programme is for all school leaders committed to putting principles at the heart of leadership, to leading ethically and building strong, sustainable cultures.

The programme consists of four online workshops covering; ethical foundations, ethical principles, ethical practice, principled leadership and social justice. There will be space for personal reflection and intellectual challenge as we consider, debate, and discuss together what it means to be an ethical school leader in our generation.

While most teachers and school leaders would readily agree that principled, ethical leadership is at the heart of education – what this means and how it is translated into practice can be more contested. Claims to ‘moral purpose’ and ‘acting in the best interests of students’ are frequently cited by stakeholders to support widely differing policies and practices. As critical professional practitioners, we need to engage reflexively with the foundations of our own moral frameworks and confront the policy environment in which we work. Education can be transformative in addressing disadvantage, but inequities continue to be perpetuated by a system predicated on winners and losers.


  • Greater self-awareness and renewed moral purpose
  • Deeper understanding of differing ethical perspectives and tensions within the system
  • Courage to pursue personal and professional values

The SSAT’s Principled Leadership programme this year has made me think again about my and our school’s purpose. Consequently, we have revised our vision and strategic ambition, and the need to affect more than just our local community. This testament serves more than just the need to promote its effectiveness, but also the desire to spread the word; it should be a mandatory aspect of becoming a school leader.
Andy Christoforou, Headteacher, Abbey College

Host information

Dr Dan Belcher, Senior Education Lead, SSAT

Dr Dan Belcher, SSAT

Dan leads on SSAT’s leadership programmes and has a wealth of experience in designing and delivering professional development for all career stages. Before joining SSAT in 2009 he was a senior leader and teacher of French and German. Dan enjoys working with individuals and teams to realise their goals and grow leadership capacity.

Workshop Information

Module 1: Ethical foundations

Date: Monday 4 July 2022

  • Where does my moral framework come from?
  • What is my moral purpose?

Module 2: Ethical principles

Date: Monday 12 September 2022

  • Which philosophical positions influence my thinking?
  • What ethical tensions do I face?

Module 3: Ethical practice

Date: Monday 10 October 2022

  • How is ethical practice lived out at different levels?
  • How do we develop schools as moral communities?

Module 4: Principled leadership and social justice

Date: Monday 14 November 2022

  • What role do schools play in achieving social justice?
  • How do I make a difference?

Save more with SSAT Membership

With SSAT Membership you would save £145 off this course, and all other SSAT courses are available at a discounted rate. Whether that be on leadership, or assessment, the choice is yours. Sign up for membership today and access all member benefits immediately.

Find out more about SSAT Membership

Register your interest

Joining this course provided me with a safe space to explore and critically reflect on the nature of principled leadership and how I personally understood the concept. Having Dan and a group of highly able peer leaders to discuss the course theory/content and the support/different viewpoints/challenge they have provided me with has been invaluable. This is the real strength of this course and I highly recommend it to anyone looking to check that their personal decision making is as principled as possible in our ever-changing education sector.
Luke Weston, Headteacher, Bingley Grammar School

Book now

Start date:

Monday 4 July 2022
3:30pm - 5:30pm


Four modules delivered online over two terms


SSAT member cost: £675
Non-member cost: £810

All prices exclusive of VAT

Ideal for

School leaders in all phases

More info

Contact us on 020 7802 0955 or by email.