Introducing the NPQ for SENCOs

Introducing the NPQ for SENCOs

We are delighted to announce that Best Practice Network has been awarded the contract to deliver the new National Professional Qualification (NPQ) for Special Educational Needs Coordinators (SENCOs). This development aligns with the government's broader SEND reforms, emphasising national standards for mainstream schools to meet the needs of pupils with SEND early on, preventing escalation. 


The NPQ for SENCOs aims to equip participants with essential skills, knowledge and leadership abilities required for the SENCO role. Our tailored approach aims to equip participants with the essential skills, knowledge, and leadership abilities required for the SENCO role. Through our programme, SENCOs will play a pivotal role in shaping whole-school teaching practices and fostering inclusive environments where pupils with SEND can thrive.

Key Features of the NPQ:

  • Scope and Duration: The NPQ for SENCOs spans 18, consisting of 18 months of blended and structured learning and then followed by the assessment window.

  • Assessment Requirement: To obtain NPQ accreditation, candidates will need to successfully complete and submit a written case study assessment with a 2500-word limit.

  • Target Audience: The course is tailored for SENCOs in role, teachers interested in developing expertise in SEND for potential future SENCO roles, and school leaders committed to enhancing inclusive teaching.

  • Commencement Date: The teaching of the new NPQ is scheduled to commence in autumn 2024, replacing the existing National Award for SEN Coordination (NASENCO) qualification.

  • Content Overview: The NPQ encompasses eight vital topics, including school culture, statutory framework, identification of need, teaching, behaviour, leading and managing provision, professional development, and implementation.


We understand the importance of building professional networks, which is why collaboration with peers is woven throughout every cycle of the programme. Our Face-to-Face sessions, facilitated by experienced SEND professionals, provide a platform for meaningful discussions and peer-to-peer learning. Additionally, our online study platform, equipped with interactive resources and discussion boards, fosters engagement and collaboration beyond the classroom.

Who is it for?

SENCOs who have already obtained the NASENCO will not need to complete the new NPQ for SENCOs. From September 2024, all SENCOs will:

  • Need to take the NPQ for SENCOs if they have not completed or started the NASENCO

  • Still need to complete training within 3 years of appointment - schools and SENCOs must ensure they enrol on training that will meet this requirement

  • SENCOs appointed before 1 September 2009 will not be required to take the NPQ but will be expected to ensure compliance with the regulations

We believe that this leadership-level qualification will empower SENCOs to be strategic leaders within their schools, reinforcing inclusive teaching for all pupils. Best Practice Network is committed to delivering evidence-based, practical training that supports the professional development of SENCOs, aspiring SENCOs, and school leaders.

Will Rogers 
NPQ Programme Director

Want to know more? 

If you would like to know more about the NPQ for SENCOs,  you can register your interest here:


Or get in touch with one of our friendly advisors using the details below:


 Tel: +44 (0) 117 920 9200 (8.30am-5.30pm, Mon-Fri)