About the program

Tailored professional development for emerging school leaders

Teach To Lead is a selective one-year leadership development program for teachers with formal leadership roles in schools – and is not exclusive to Teach For Australia Alumni. It accelerates the development of emerging leaders within schools serving low socioeconomic communities, to improve student and school outcomes.

We work with both primary and secondary schools throughout Australia, and target middle leaders who have at least one year of leadership experience in a school-based role, who are responsible for a team throughout the year, deliver professional development, provide feedback on classroom observation and are in a position to coach other staff members. We seek individuals who are focused on results, committed to addressing educational inequity, recognise the value in working with others and have growth mindsets about themselves and those around them.

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Program overview

Teach To Lead is designed to build the skills that matter most in schools facing the greatest challenges.

Participants, known as Fellows, build fundamental skills such as strategic planning, coaching others, leading challenging conversations and building effective teams in order to influence and effect real change. Our program aims to support Fellows to:

  • Be highly effective in their school leadership role, resulting in improved growth for students.
  • Build skills and experience that will make Fellows strong candidates for more senior school leadership roles.
  • Maximise a cohort learning experience, forming an ongoing peer network that supports Fellows’ continued learning and progress.

Teach To Lead encompasses targeted workshops, the community of a peer cohort, and the personal support of a coach in order to develop leadership and management skills that drive student achievement. Fellows put these skills immediately into practice, applying their learnings on the job.


Throughout the program, Fellows learn how to:

  • build a high-performing team, working towards a shared vision,
  • lead sustainable change,
  • communicate expectations and hold colleagues to account,
  • observe teachers and deliver quality feedback, to support practice improvement,
  • develop a strategic plan,
  • use data to drive goal-setting, planning and action,
  • coach individuals to develop,
  • design and deliver high-impact professional development for teachers,
  • lead challenging conversations,
  • boost self-awareness and
  • build personal resilience.

Teach To Lead is built on Teach For Australia’s Leadership Competency Framework. The framework is centered around commitment to improved student outcomes and resolving educational disadvantage. Fellows achieve this through a focus on:

  • Leading others by valuing relationships and collaboration;
  • Leading change with a belief in self-efficacy and internal locus of control;
  • Leading learning with a willingness to learn and use data to improve; and
  • Leading self with high expectations for self and others.


Over the course of the one-year program, participants will engage in a variety of activities aimed to enhance learning, establish networks and implement effective change related to the specific context of their own school. The Teach To Lead program encompasses the following components:


These highly interactive workshops are spread throughout the program and occur largely during school holidays, giving you an opportunity to build strong connections with the rest of your cohort. They also include time for personal reflection.

The workshops use an approach that is a balance of new content and active and interactive application of, and reflection on the content. Each session aligns to our Leadership Competency Framework. Fellows are normally expected to complete some short preparation activities, such as brief pre-reading or identifying relevant connections to the content (which will then be used in the session) and sessions are followed up with some homework. Homework typically involves implementing the new content and strategies learnt in the session – it is not additional work and is relevant to maximising your role back at your school.

The workshops are a compulsory component of the program. We expect Fellows to attend all sessions.

Program dates for the current and upcoming cohorts are available here.

Impact Initiative

The Impact Initiative ensures the skills and concepts you build through the program are put into practice – with measurable results. Each participant designs and implements a project with the aim of raising student achievement. The Impact Initiative also sets goals for developing yourself and your team, in support of your overarching goals for students. You will receive regular feedback on your Impact Initiative from your coach and peers.

Leadership coaching

Throughout the program, you will have a Leadership Coach who will support and guide you to set and achieve your goals. You will regularly meet with your Leadership Coach to discuss your Impact Initiative, your personal leadership development and general challenges and opportunities in your current leadership role.


1. Candidates must have at least one year of leadership experience in a school-based role, and in 2020, will hold a leadership role or position of responsibility in which they are:

  • leading a team focused on teaching and learning,
  • delivering professional development,
  • coaching at least one staff member and
  • leading feedback conversations.

2. Candidates’ school should have an ICSEA (Index of Community Socio-Educational Advantage) score below 1000. You can find this information at www.myschool.edu.au.

School involvement

To ensure that each school gets maximum value from Teach To Lead, senior school leaders are asked to:

  • Endorse each applicant during the selection process, confirming their suitability for the program.
  • Ensure each participant’s leadership role and key accountabilities are clear.
  • Provide feedback on each participant’s skills and performance.
  • Participate in activities to evaluate and continuously improve the Teach To Lead program.

Benefits for schools

Teach To Lead provides participants with tools and support to maximise Fellows’ impact on students:

  • Participants work towards goals for their team and students that align with their schools’ strategic priorities.
  • Participants receive tools and resources that can be shared across their school.
  • Participants learn to effectively coach other teachers, and drive a culture of improvement.
  • Participants are introduced to a network of other talented school leaders who share ideas and best practice.
  • Key program sessions are open to additional teachers from their school to attend.


Schools are asked to make a contribution of $1500 excluding GST to total program costs, as well as fund some time release (up to 4 days total).

Release time will be used for face to face learning sessions, as well as coordinated school visits and opportunities for shadowing other leaders. Wherever possible, face-to-face learning sessions will be held during school holidays or on Saturdays.


In 2020, our workshops will take place in Victoria. Leadership coaching will be provided in a mix of workshops and virtual sessions, ensuring a strong coaching relationship regardless of distance.

Beyond the program

By participating in Teach To Lead, Fellows join a life-long network of high-performing leaders, who challenge and inspire one another.

Teach To Lead fosters continued connections and leadership opportunities beyond the program. Our aim is for Fellows to continue to increase their impact on students throughout their career. Fellows will also be invited to further hone their leadership skills as Alumni, through continued engagement with the Teach To Lead program. This could come in several ways, such as:

  • Facilitating learning sessions for future cohorts.
  • Acting as a coach for participants in future cohorts.
  • Participating in program evaluation activities.
  • Taking part in Teach To Lead promotional activities.

You can read more about program outcomes here.

96% of Fellows indicate that the program improved their leadership performance more than any other activity
100% of Cohort 2016 Fellows would highly recommend the program to others in similar roles
100% of Fellows indicate that their performance as a leader has improved through the program