Here are the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.

  • I am a headteacher: how will Accelerate help my school?

    In the first five years, a teacher’s learning curve is at its steepest – and this is where Accelerate’s specialist support can help. Accelerate will provide early career teachers in your school with the essential specialist support they need to rapidly improve their practice to improve outcomes for learners sooner; with Accelerate, your early career teachers will quickly become more effective and efficient in the classroom.

    The programme offers significant benefits for the wider school community as well, by upskilling an existing or new mentor and providing specialist professional development for school leaders. In-school mentors will be supported in effective mentoring, effective teacher professional development as well as in instructional coaching and will play a role in mentoring the participant; school leaders will be able to access specialist training in the use of research and evidence in school and supporting teachers to do the same.

    Accelerate has been designed with a demanding teaching timetable and the needs of the school in mind; the blended learning programme is delivered with maximum flexibility through a mix of online learning, specialist coaching and local communities of practice to minimise time away from the classroom while the in-school mentor role is key to ensuring that coaching and support is aligned with school culture.

  • How do I check my eligibility?

    To participate in Accelerate you must be a teacher in England in your first five years of teaching when you start the course in January 2019, have the support of your school to apply, and be teaching in a school that meets the eligibility criteria for funding.

    The earliest we can accept teachers onto the programme is if they are currently doing their NQT induction. Unfortunately, trainee teachers, SCITT students and PGCE students are not eligible for the programme.

    To be eligible, your school must currently be Ofsted graded 3 or 4, or you must be teaching at a school in a DfE-identified ‘priority area’ or ‘opportunity area’. 

    Places are limited, and schools which meet both elements of these criteria (ie are in a priority or opportunity area, AND are Ofsted graded 3 or 4) will take priority. Places will then be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

    List of DfE-identified opportunity areas

    List of DfE-identified priority areas

    If you have any questions, please contact the Accelerate team.

  • How do I know if my school is in a DfE-identified opportunity area or priority area?

    To check whether or not your school is in a DfE-identified priority area or opportunity area, see:

    DfE-identified opportunity areas:

    List of DfE-identified opportunity areas

    List of DfE-identified priority areas

    If you have any questions, please contact the Accelerate team.

  • How can I be involved in delivery / coaching on the programme?

    The Accelerate programme will be delivered in partnership with networks of schools across the country, making use of practising classroom teachers from these schools as expert coaches. Schools involved will be remunerated for their coaches’ time spent supporting the programme.

    Coaches on the Accelerate programme will:

    • receive first-class training to develop their coaching skills further
    • have access and entitlement to their own coach/professional supervisor
    • be part of a network of coaches who will support and learn from each other
    • have the privilege of working with a group of teachers starting their careers and help them to accelerate their classroom practice to reach excellence.

    Coaches on the programme will need to be prepared to attend a two day training session, run a termly short workshop with resources provided by the Accelerate team, and provide online support for a group of around 10 early career teachers. You will also provide 1:1 input, including observation (real life or video), discussion and feedback with each of the 10 teachers every term.

  • How is Accelerate funded?

    Accelerate is funded by the Department for Education’s Teaching and Leadership Innovation Fund, which supports high-quality professional development in the areas and schools in England that need it most.

  • Can I participate if I am not in an eligible school?

    Currently, Accelerate is only available to early career teachers in schools which meet our eligibility criteria.

    To be eligible, your school must currently be Ofsted graded 3 or 4, or you must be teaching at a school in a DfE-identified ‘priority area’ or ‘opportunity area’. 

    However, if you sign up to receive updates via our contact us page we will keep you up to date on the programme and let you know if it becomes available more widely.

  • Are there any costs to me or my school?

    Accelerate is funded by the Department for Education, therefore it is free for all teachers in eligible schools to take part in the programme.

    The programme does not cover the cost of supply staff or any travel expenses.

  • How many days will I need out of school time?

    The programme includes the following events for participants to attend, some of which will require time out of school.

    •A one-day induction event, taking place from January, held locally.
    •A two-day (Friday & Saturday) residential in March held regionally.
    Two further one-day workshops held locally.
    •Short local workshops (delivered by coaches) and 1:1 coaching will be arranged locally and on an individual basis to suit needs.

  • Where are the Delivery Hubs?
  • Who are the coaches?

    Accelerate Programme Coaches will be a specialist instructional coach who has been teaching for at least 5 years or has been a National College of Teaching and Leadership designated Specialist Leader of Education (SLE) for at least 1 year.

    They will also be a specialist in teaching a phase or subject (e.g. physics or EYFS).

  • As a teacher on the programme, what can I expect to learn?


    Term Module Module content
    Spring 1 ·  Overview of the Accelerate Programme overview

    ·  Professional behaviours: professional learning, self-evaluation and managing workload

    ·  Using evidence to inform practice


    Summer 2 ·  Managing behaviour: routines, rewards, sanctions

    ·  Understanding motivation: high expectations, support, challenge

    ·  Using resources: cognitive load theory, effective technology use


    Autumn 3 ·  Instructional strategies: modelling and scaffolding, direct instruction, independent practice

    ·  Planning lesson sequences: activating prior learning, spacing and interleaving

    ·  Consolidating knowledge: effective questioning, retrieval practice


    Winter 4 ·  Diverse needs: SEND, EAL

    ·  Feedback: responsive teaching, approaches to marking

    ·  Assessment: purpose, reliability, validity


    Spring (5) ·  Conducting an in-school research-based project


    (We will provide materials for participants to undertake the research project after the programme has ended)


  • I have completed my formal registration and the school has returned the Memorandum of Understanding. When will I be able to start the programme?

    Once we have received both your completed formal registration details and the Memorandum of Understanding from your school, you will be sent a link to complete a survey from NFER. This will shortly be followed by access to the online learning portal.

  • I am a QTLS – do I still qualify?
  • Where can I find information about the upcoming residential events?

    You can find more information here:

    15th  & 16th March – Manchester – Find out more.

    15th & 16th March – London Heathrow – Find out more.

    29th & 30th March – Birmingham – Find out more.

    29th & 30th March – Manchester – Find out more.

    29th & 30th March – London Heathrow – Find out more.