NSW Public School Leadership and Management Credential

The NSW Public School Leadership and Management Credential forms an important element of the School Leadership Strategy 2015 (PDF 98KB). It is recognised that newly-appointed, first-time principals benefit from developing a set of consistent skills, knowledge and understanding in order to effectively lead and manage their schools. All newly-appointed, first-time principals in NSW public schools will be required to attain the credential. The credential will assist school leaders to meet their accountabilities in regard to departmental policies, processes and procedures.

Information for current candidates

Current credential users will have until 10 December 2020 to complete the credential in its current format. The credential modules are being transferred into a new e-learning platform, and will be accessed from the MyPL site from 20 December 2020.

Access to the credential will not be available from 10 December 2020 until the 20 December 2020. During this time, all data for candidates currently enrolled will be transferred to the MyPL site. This data will include the status of any completed modules.

The new platform will offer a better learning experience for staff. The course content and assessment components have also been updated to ensure it is accurate, high-quality and includes information on all the relevant department policies and processes.

The course

The credential consists of 19 online modules with the following components. The modules have a minimum of three components with some having four:

  • pre-reading
  • e-learning
  • assessment
  • recommended further reading (optional)

Candidates will be required to read the pre-reading and e-learning material before attempting the assessment. After the pre-reading, each module will take up to two hours to complete. Upon completion of all 19 modules, you are eligible to receive a certificate of completion of the NSW Public School Leadership and Management Credential.

For browser and software information, refer to the Module instructions page.

How is it assessed?

Candidates are required to achieve 100% in the assessment for every module in order to be awarded the credential. The assessment is open-book and the candidates may have multiple attempts at the assessment. The assessment must be completed individually. There is no lock-out period for multiple attempts at the assessment. The credential remains valid for five years from the date of completion of the first module. Candidates may be required to complete updates if warranted by policy changes.

External candidates

Candidates external to the department who are seeking to access the credential should contact leadership@det.nsw.edu.au.

Explore the credential

NSW Public School Leadership and Management Credential (staff only)

Brief description of modules
Course Outcomes

Module 1

Asset management

Candidates will be familiar with the resources available and the required procedures to effectively manage school assets.

Module 2 

Core legal issues

Candidates will learn about common legal issues that are encountered by schools and principals.

Module 3 

Developing self and others

Candidates will learn about building a collaborative professional learning community that is focused on the continuous improvement of teaching and learning underpinned by the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers. The content of this module is drawn from ‘Developing Self and Others' which is a professional practice of the Australian Professional Standard for Principals and the Leadership Profiles (2015).

Module 4

Engaging and working with the community

Candidates will develop a deeper understanding of the clear communication strategies which lead to improved parental and community engagement, enhanced staff morale and positive consultative decision-making.

Module 5

Ethical decision making

Candidates will develop an understanding of ethical leadership and management practice.

Module 6 

Industrial relations

Candidates will develop an understanding of managing and responding to workplace issues, within an industrial context.

Module 7
Leading and managing the school 

Leading and managing the school (under review)

Candidates will understand the accountability of principals, aligned to the nationally agreed professional practices of principals as described in the Australian Professional Standard for Principals and the Leadership Profiles (2015).

Module 8

Leading teaching and learning

Candidates will develop an understanding of how to lead evidence-based teaching and learning. They will see how leading teaching is located within the School Excellence Framework and research literature. They will also be able to learn from a high value-add (HVA, CESE 2015) school case study.

Module 9
Managing complaints

Managing complaints

Candidates will develop their knowledge and understanding of what constitutes a complaint, how to manage a complaint and what their responsibilities are so that complaints can be managed effectively.

Module 10

Performance and development

Candidates will understand how to promote and lead a collaborative and supportive culture in their workplace, meet the requirements of the NSW Department of Education Performance and Development Framework and ensure access to quality professional learning for all teachers.

Module 11

Performance improvement

Candidates will understand performance management, procedures for implementing improvement programs and the leadership skills required to do so effectively.

Module 12

Policy implementation and monitoring

Candidates will develop a clearer understanding of what the principal must know and do to align management procedures, processes and policy implementation.

Module 13


Candidates will learn how to procure goods and services on behalf of the school, in compliance with the NSW Government and NSW Department of Education Procurement Policy.

Module 14

School excellence

Candidates will develop their understanding of leading school planning and annual reporting. They will understand school self-assessment, external validation, the School Excellence Policy and school development reviews.

Module 15

Staffing in NSW Public Schools

Candidates will be supported to better understand the fundamentals of workforce planning including their legal and ethical responsibilities in managing staffing entitlement including enrolment practices for staffing and the recruitment of permanent, temporary and casual staff.

Module 16

Strategic School Resourcing and Financial Management

Candidates will be familiar with the responsibilities of the principal and some of the resources available to support school financial management practices.

Module 17

Wellbeing for learning

Candidates will build their knowledge of the NSW Department of Education Wellbeing Framework for Schools and be provided with information and advice about key related policies and good practice to support the wellbeing needs of all students in their school.

Module 18

Work health and safety

Candidates will develop an understanding of key WHS information in regards to Injury Management and Return to Work.

Module 19

Leading for Teacher Quality

Candidates will develop knowledge and understanding about how to connect with quality professional learning practices and resources and in-school action to support the development and growth of expert teachers.

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