London Metropolitan University Research Institutes


VSO/ NAHT Evaluation

Funded by:



August - November 2007


VSO and the NAHT commissioned IPSE to evaluate the impact on schools in the UK of a pilot project, International Extended Placements for School Leaders. This involved placing eight school leaders to work alongside senior educational practitioners in Namibia and Rwanda for three months. Each project was specifically designed to build the skills and capacities of local educational leaders including school principals and inspectors.

This project was initiated in the beliefs that:

• education systems in developing countries can benefit from the skills and
experience of highly motivated school leaders;

• participating school leaders will return to their posts invigorated and with
new perspectives to apply to their roles; and

• participating school leaders will have the motivation and the experience to
introduce a global dimension into the curriculum of their schools.

It was also hoped that the opportunities for other members of school staff to ‘act up’ during the school leader’s absence would contribute to their professional development and might encourage them to move into leadership roles themselves.

We conducted case studies in the eight schools after the school leaders had returned. In each school we interviewed the school leaders, other staff, pupils, governors and LA inspectors to try to assess whether and how the benefits to the UK schools suggested above had occurred.

The report 'Evaluation of the impact on UK schools of the VSO/NAHT pilot scheme: ‘International Extended Placements for School Leaders’ is available on the VSO website.


Project team

Merryn Hutchings

Sarah Smart


Merryn Hutchings -


   Company Information    Page last updated 28 February 2008     Contact Page Owner (Angela Kamara)