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National Teaching School

National Leaders of Education

Core Functions of the Teaching School


The ultimate aim of the work undertaken by teaching schools is to have a positive and sustainable impact on the lives and opportunities of all children and young people by raising standards of teaching and improving learning outcomes.


St. Anthony's Teaching School is one of only eight teaching schools within Leeds. Besides the work we do as an individual teaching school, St. Anthony's works within an alliance - a group of schools and strategic partners that are supported by the leadership of a teaching school.  Working together means a stronger team of professionals and a wider range of knowledge, skills and experience which can be deployed across the 'Big Six' strands of work undertaken by each teaching school.


Supporting Other Schools


We lead the coordination of school-to-school support. This usually involves working with a school or academy in challenging circumstances to bring about improvement but can also encompass work to ensure standards are maintained at high levels. Priorities are identified to support underperforming schools and academies. Local authorities and Dioceses work with us to support schools in need of improvement. We ensure that the best system leaders are working to improve the quality of teaching and leadership where it is most needed. This includes deciding how to use the services of system leaders to provide support to other schools, such as:


  • middle and senior leaders working as Specialist Leaders of Education
  • guide to system leader roles.
  • Headteachers working as local and National Leaders of Education
  • Chairs of Governors working as National Leaders of Governance


Information is provided below in relation to our current systems for school to school support. Please click on the links to find out more:

Funding For School Improvement


The £140 million Strategic School Improvement Fund is a grant to support primary, secondary, middle, all-through, alternative provision and special academies and maintained schools, and pupil referral units. It is intended to further build a school-led system, and aims to target resources at the schools most in need to improve school performance and pupil attainment; to help them use their resources most effectively, and to deliver more good school places.


The fund will support a broad range of school improvement activities including, but not limited to, improving leadership, governance, teaching methods and approaches, and financial health and efficiency. The fund will support medium- to long-term sustainable activities across groups of schools with a preference towards school-led provision, that is, support provided by schools, for schools.


The Strategic School Improvement Fund is not intended to support specific projects or activities already funded through other Department for Education programmes. These will include those focused on curriculum enhancement, opportunity areas, Northern Powerhouse, national professional qualifications, initial teacher training (ITT) recruitment, Teaching and Leadership Innovation Fund, academy conversion activities or improvements in school buildings or infrastructure.


Teaching schools, multi-academy trusts and local authorities will submit to the Department for Education applications for funding on behalf of the sector to address local improvement priorities across groups of schools. To ensure that support reaches those schools which need it most, and in the most effective way, we expect that, in shaping these applications, regional schools commissioners, multi-academy trusts, local authorities, the Teaching Schools Council, and diocesan representatives will work collaboratively with schools to bring together their local intelligence to identify shared improvement priorities.


If you meet any of the eligibility criteria below and wish to be supported through a combined bid, then please contact Lisa Leonard:

Our NLEs begin the school to school process, commissioning contracts and brokering support. Here are the main NLEs working currently with our TSA:




Lisa is a passionate and enthusiastic leader who strives to improve the school system both in her own school and across her alliance each and every day. She is currently an active Headteacher at St Anthony's Catholic Primary School, a school rated outstanding under her leadership since 2010, currently providing support to several schools across four local education authorities. She has experience of working in primary schools with very different socio-economic backgrounds, but mainly demonstrates expertise in schools with challenging circumstances, especially inner city locations.


In addition to this role, Lisa is also the Director of the St Anthony's Teaching School Alliance, where she leads all aspects of the Alliance,  working with her skilled strategic partners. Lisa has shown proven success in school improvement working with schools in special measures, moving them rapidly to good, and also with RI schools also on their journey to good.


As a leader of an outstanding school, Lisa is keen to showcase the highest of standards within an inner-city location, proving it can be done! Lisa is rated as an outstanding leader of an outstanding school. She is driven and focused on developing whole school systems and strategies that underpin successful schools. She has mentored newly appointed Headteachers as well as utilising the experience and talent in her own partner schools to support schools in special measures.


Lisa's passion for organisation, developing whole staff and distributive leadership enable her to develop strong teams across a school, improving communication, expectations and raising standards. Within her own school and the alliance, Lisa is blessed to have a number of skilled professionals that excel in each area of school life, with her own school now rated as a national support school with four specialist leaders of education. Lisa has a strong moral sense of service to her alliance and is successful in her aims. 




Mrs Alixena Lubomski is an experienced headteacher with a proven track record in providing effective system leadership support to colleague headteachers in the Dioceses of Salford and Leeds over the last ten years.  Currently, she is also a serving Section 48 Inspector and Canonical Review Leader for the Diocese of Leeds.


As a headteacher of Sacred Heart, Ilkley within The Bishop Wheeler Multi-Academy Trust, she works in collaboration with the other heads on a regular basis. She leads and supports internal school-to-school reviews and provides peer support on a range of issues including:


  • preparation for S48 inspections
  • spiritual leadership
  • working with governors
  • monitoring of teaching and learning
  • policy development
  • assessment development
  • change management
  • staff recruitment/induction/appraisal.