The formation and nourishment of school, academy and trust leaders is core to our work and the main reason Formatio was established. 


Catholic dioceses have, for years, designed and run outstanding training and formation opportunities for teachers and leaders in Catholic schools. For information regarding such, please contact your local diocesan education service.

Given the pace of educational change in recent years, we felt there was a need to institute a common Vision for Catholic School Leaders as well as formation opportunities for increasingly common school leadership roles.

A Vision for Catholic School Leadership

As part of our commitment to forming, nourishing and sustaining leaders and governors of Catholic schools, we have developed this vision into a vision document. The text of this document – agreed by the bishops of England and Wales, diocesan representatives and Catholic school leaders – serves as a gold standard for those aspiring to school leadership and as a benchmark for Formatio’s work in this area.

The vision document can be viewed by clicking the link below. We encourage you to share and apply this document widely.


Opportunities for Executive Headteachers

To support the Catholic dioceses in the provision of outstanding training and formation opportunities for school leaders, we have developed an annual programme for those interested in executive headship (serving as the operational lead of a small number of Catholic schools).

This Executive Headship Formation Programme is designed to provide a faith-sensitive introduction to the role of an executive headteacher and the distinctive challenges posed in Catholic schools.

The programme requires participants to attend two residential events over the course of an academic year. This allows the experience to be more immersive than day courses and encourages the development of professional networks. A sample programme can be found below.

The Executive Headship Formation Programme has received positive feedback from each cohort. Here’s a selection of comments from delegates who attended the most recent programme:

“It was a great opportunity to leave the worries and stresses of school behind and have time to reflect with other colleagues and focus on leadership opportunities.”

“The programme was engaging: offering purposeful, spiritual reflection and showing how this provides strength and direction when undertaking executive headship.”

“It exceeded my expectations. The practical ideas I have returned to school with are definitely worth the time away from school.”  

If you are interested in attending the programme, click below to download an ‘Express your interest’ form, or contact us for more information.

Opportunities for Catholic Senior Executive Leaders (CSEL)

Catholic Senior Executive Leader (CSEL) is an accepted term for the chief executive officer of a large Catholic multi academy trust company.

The dioceses of Leeds and Birmingham have hosted pioneering networking opportunities for Catholic Senior Executive Leaders (CSEL). In order to continue this pioneering work – and to support those aspiring to, or new to, the role of MAT leadership – we are currently liaising with the dioceses about the development of formation, training and networking opportunities for Catholic Senior Executive Leaders (CSEL).

If you have particular recommendations about what such opportunities could or should include, we would be delighted to speak with you and include you in our consultations.  Please contact us for more information or to share your thoughts.