We’re pleased to announce a new strategic partnership between the newly merged Ambition School Leadership and Institute for Teaching, and the Confederation of School Trusts (CST).


CST is the national voice of school trusts in England, and advocates for, connects and supports executive and governance leaders. Our organisations are both committed to building an excellent education system in England, and we believe that having great leaders and teachers in every school is the best way to make sure every pupil gets a great education – regardless of their background.

By working in partnership rather than competition we can ensure that what we do is complementary and has the greatest possible impact. Together, we want to build a coherent institutional architecture for schools and trusts in England – one that builds the sector’s capacity, speaks for the sector and develops teachers and leaders through exceptional programmes and qualifications. As James Toop, Chief Executive of Ambition School Leadership and the Institute for Teaching, said:

“Through this partnership we look forward to deepening the impact of our joint work across the sector and to challenging the thinking about the way we educate our educators.”

Our newly merged organisation and CST are already working together to deliver our Governance Leadership Programme, which is supported by the Department for Education and focuses on developing trust leadership and governance skills. Reflecting on our increasing collaboration ahead of CST’s official launch at the British Library on 11 October, Chief Executive Leora Cruddas said:

“I’m very proud of the work we’re already doing together through our governance leadership programme. Our new partnership builds on and consolidates this relationship. I am confident that we will be able to do some very powerful work together.”

Former National Schools Commissioner Sir David Carter – who recently announced his role as Executive Director of System Leadership in our newly merged organisation – will be closely involved in the partnership. He said:

“I’m very excited about our new alliance with CST and I believe it will support local, regional and national networks to share learning and build sustainable collaborations that lead to better educational experiences for children. System coherence is as big a priority now as I ever, and our partnership will contribute to this and build greater capacity for schools and trusts to lead the school system.”

To find out more about the work of CST, visit their website.