New headteachers: taking your first steps

Use our checklist to find out what to do before you start, and get guidance on what you should prioritise in the early weeks of headship - so you can confidently hit the ground running in your new headteacher role.

Last reviewed on 19 July 2023
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 32186
  1. Download our checklist to help you take action in advance
  2. Build relationships with your school community 
  3. Avoid making major changes initially
  4. Be proactive and develop your support network

Download our checklist to help you take action in advance

Get to know as much as you can about your school, before you start in post.

This will help you build a picture of where your school is currently, and give you the awareness and understanding you'll need for your early conversations with your school community once you start. 

Use our checklist as a guide. It covers tasks to do:  

  • As soon as you accept the post
  • 2 to 3 weeks before starting
  • 1 week before starting

You can use it at the beginning of an academic year, or if you start mid-year. 

Get ahead on essential reading 

School development/improvement plan and strategic 3- to 5-year plan Latest annual report School self-evaluation form (SEF) An overall outline of the budget Latest Ofsted report and,