Welcome to the DfE’s Women Leading In Education (WLE) Page.  Here you can find information about getting involved in a local WLE network, accessing coaching support to develop your leadership potential, or pledging your support as a coach to support women in leadership.

Women Leading In Education is aimed at supporting women into leadership roles, through leadership development opportunities, sharing of great practice and access to range of helpful resources.   The Department for Education is committed to supporting women in teaching and aims to have 1000 women leaders supported through a network or through our coaching pledge.

The School Workforce Census shows that 66% of headteachers are female (compared to 74% of all classroom teachers), meaning that women are under-represented in leadership positions.

In the latest available data (2016):

  • 73% of heads in primary schools were female, whilst  85% of all teachers in primary schools were female.
  • 39% of heads in secondary schools were female, whilst 62% of all teachers in secondary schools were female.

The DfE coaching pledge invites all current leaders to make a voluntary pledge to coach aspiring female leaders.

Returning to teaching?

If you’re considering returning to teaching or you’re qualified to teach secondary modern foreign languages, maths or physics, the transition may be easier than you expect. To find out what support may be available to you complete the online registration form or call 0800 085 0971 for help and advice.