Teaching schools

Teaching school alliances

Teaching schools are outstanding schools that work with others to provide high-quality training and development to new and experienced school staff. They are part of the government's plan to give schools a central role in raising standards by developing a self-improving and sustainable school-led system.

Teaching schools work in partnership with other schools and form working alliances. Teaching school alliances (TSAs) do vary slightly in how they are governed and in what they offer, often tailoring their work to local needs.

Herts teaching school alliances provision map.pdf (83kb/1 page)

The following teaching school alliances in Hertfordshire have provided information on their initial teacher training and continuing professional development opportunities.

Acorns Teaching School Alliance

Our Teaching School Alliance is welcoming and inclusive of schools and early years settings across Hertfordshire and beyond. Our strategic partners include six Hertfordshire nursery schools and a range of other primary schools and early years settings.

We aim to provide opportunities to share excellent professional learning and leadership development by working collaboratively with our alliance schools.

Initial teacher training arrangements: We run a tuition fee School Direct Programme with Pilgrim Partnership for initial teacher training, with a focus on EYFS/ KS1. The programme is delivered at Ludwick Nursery School in Welwyn Garden City with high quality placements available in our Alliance early years/primary schools across Hertfordshire.

Accredited training: We also support teachers and leaders of the future, particularly those with an early years specialism, including an Early Years Teacher Led Development Workshop run by HertsCam. We train early years educators Level 2 and 3 in a bespoke course delivered at Ludwick Nursery School with expert mentoring and support.

Role in continuing professional development: We offer an innovative programme of professional learning and leadership development, based on peer to peer networks and sustained learning opportunities. There are twilight workshops on early years themes, such as writing and maths workshops. We embrace a school led self-improving system. We aim to support schools as they develop their provision for every child in our alliance schools and settings.

Contact Tel: 01707 323693
Contact Email:

The Advanced Learning Alliance

The Advanced Learning Teaching School Alliance is a collaborative group of secondary schools, Hertfordshire University, the Wroxham Teaching School and Herts for Learning in Hertfordshire working together to develop, sustain and promote an exceptional quality of education for our students.

Initial teacher training arrangements: We run a School Direct programme through Watford Girls’ Grammar School and lead a school-led PGCE offered by Hertfordshire University. We recruit successfully into local schools and many trainees completing their training achieve Outstanding. We also offer a paid pre-ITT internship for prospective Physics teachers in June/July.

Role in continuing professional development: We offer a wide range of CPD opportunities, including subject enhancement in Physics, annual conferences, twilight inset across a range of subjects, Holocaust Education programmes, online forums, HoD to HoD coaching, Middle and Senior Leadership courses, Teacher-Led Development Work with HertsCam and a Business Managers’ Forum, among others.

Contact Tel: Linda Linwood (Teaching School Manager) 01707 622879
Contact Email:

Alban Teaching School Alliance

A network of over 20 partners, we are proud of our collaborative, progressive and professional approach.  Our mission is to inspire everybody with a career in education to love what they do and be the best that they can be.

Initial teacher training arrangements: The Alban Federation, working with Sandringham as the lead school, has been training teachers for over a decade. Training is hosted in schools across the area: every secondary school in St Albans and Harpenden works in the partnership. The federation was graded ‘outstanding’ by OFSTED at its last inspection.

Role in continuing professional development: We offer a wide range of professional learning opportunities, ranging from GO! (improving teaching from good to outstanding) to Inspiring Leaders (developing and energising future middle leaders). We pride ourselves on providing timely, tailored opportunities for schools and individuals, to release potential and enable great learning every day, for everyone.

Contact Tel: 01727 799560 ext 281
Contact Email:

Catalyst Teaching School Alliance SCITT (school-centred initial teacher training)

Catalyst SCITT is a school-led provider of initial teacher education and professional development.Your training with us will take place in high-quality schools, with fantastic students and great support.

Catalyst is a collaborative partnership of schools. We are based in Bishop’s Stortford and surrounding areas, including parts of Essex.

Initial teacher training arrangements: Catalyst SCITT provides school-centred initial teacher training within our family of schools. Our aim is to spot and nurture the outstanding teachers of the future, giving them the best possible training and support in their early careers.

We offer training to graduates who want to train to teach in secondary school subjects and offer a range of qualifications options: salaried or fee-paying, PGCE or QTS. We also offer training during the first year of employment – the newly qualified teacher, probationary year.

Role in continuing professional development: As a teaching school alliance we take continuous professional development very seriously and ensure a seamless transition to the probationary year.  Catalyst supports NQTs as well as offering a wide range of career development courses that can lead to school leadership.

Contact Tel: 01279 836633
Contact Email:

Dacorum Teaching School Alliance

The Dacorum Teaching School Alliance is a collaboration of schools, universities and local authority learning trusts in the West of Hertfordshire who have combined with the aim of sustaining and promoting an exceptional quality of education for the students and communities they serve. We comprise of 13 schools - Secondary, Special and PRU.

Initial teacher training arrangements: We currently offer exciting and varied opportunities for Teacher Training through the Schools Direct Programme and Assessment only routes (for the appropriately qualified participants). Our trainees will form a unique identifiable cohort who draw upon a range of support from each other as well as a range of participating schools.

Role in continuing professional development: Our CPD Programme is extensive and varied; closely matched to the needs of the Alliance. We will host Alliance led programmes for individuals as well as whole departments.

Contact: Tiann Madden. Tel: 01442 247476
Contact Email:

Herts and Bucks Teaching School Alliance

Our TSA consists of approximately 25 schools, Herts for Learning, Buckinghamshire Learning Trust and two universities that cover all aspects of school education in South Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire. The TSA delivers an exceptional standard of school improvement, teacher training, CPD and research.

Initial teacher training arrangements: The School Direct programme is delivered in collaboration with the University of Hertfordshire. The TSA hub is based at Parmiter’s School and involves 18 schools across all phases of school education. For September 2016 we are offering 119 placements across 18 secondary subjects, plus primary opportunities.

Role in continuing professional development: The TSA delivers an MA module on behalf of the University of Hertfordshire, the national middle leader’s qualification (NPQML) for the National College of Teaching and Learning (NCTL) plus the Outstanding and Improved Teacher Performance courses. There is an NQT support programme, a leadership secondment scheme, plus a range of bespoke events and courses.

Contact Tel: 01923 284169
Contact Email:

North Herts Teaching Alliance

Working out of Hitchin, Stevenage, Letchworth, Baldock and beyond, our TSA works closely with Universities and Herts for Learning in order to raise the standards of education for all in the North Herts Area.

Initial teacher training arrangements: Our Schools Direct program is run out of Hitchin Boys school in collaboration with the University of Hertfordshire. We offer places in a wide range of subjects and phases, using the expertise of our outstanding teaching staff to support, train and retain candidates. We have a strong track record of nurturing excellent prospective teachers. 

Role in continuing professional development: We are currently running three CPD programs, all with an emphasis on networking across the alliance. The first is for NQT+1 teachers and is tailored to the specific needs of this career stage. The second focuses on middle leadership development, and the third is preparation for aspiring senior leaders.

Contact Tel : Tina Stojko. 01462 621300

West Hertfordshire Teaching School Partnership

As an alliance of over 45 schools, we value working collaboratively with colleagues from all phases. We have strong links with other teaching schools across the eastern region, universities and Herts for Learning. One of our key focus areas is developing leadership at every level.

Initial teacher training arrangements: We currently work with the Pilgrim Partnership, experienced providers of classroom-based SCITT training. The comprehensive course provides a real depth of knowledge to trainees, giving an exceptionally high success rate of good and outstanding trainees, and the vast majority obtain employment in local schools. Many trainees attend our bespoke NQT programme.

Role in continuing professional development: As the Outstanding Leaders Alliance which is a collaborative group led by West Herts, we deliver NPQH, NPQML and NPQSL training. High-quality CPD is available for all levels of school staff, including our comprehensive Professional Teaching Assistant Programme (ProTAP) and our Maths Specialist Teacher Programme (MaST) which is delivered in partnership with the University of Hertfordshire and Herts for Learning. We offer collaborative research and development opportunities such as Enquiry+ with the University of Hertfordshire.

Contact Tel: 01442 406545
Contact Email:

The Wroxham Transformative Learning Alliance

Membership of our alliance is open to schools, individuals and organisations. We are keen to promote the core values and principles of 'learning without limits' in a culture of high-quality professional learning, where colleagues are trusted and empowered.

Initial teacher training arrangements: We offer both salaried and unsalaried School Direct primary teacher training placements with the University of Hertfordshire. Both training routes are based in school and are full time for one year.

Role in continuing professional development: We offer a range of professional learning opportunities for primary colleagues. Our courses are all bespoke and are inspired by the core principles of 'learning without limits'.

Contact Tel:  01707 643576
Contact Email: