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Strategic planning

NGA publishes latest version of popular Being Strategic guidance


NGA has updated its popular guide to strategy development for those leading and governing both in schools and in multi-academy trusts (MAT).

Being Strategic is a collaboration between NGA, the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) and the  Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL). It explains in clear and relatable terms how strategic priorities are identified, resourced and monitored throughout the year.

Being Strategic also gives valuable advice on vision setting, self-evaluation and risk assessment, as well as how to communicate the strategy to stakeholders and create the right culture for the strategy to succeed. 

For the first time there are now two versions of the guide: one for single schools, single academy trusts and federations and one for MATs who implement their vision and strategy across schools. 
As a result, Being Strategic can be more easily used and applied by governors, trustees, headteachers and CEOs. 

Being Strategic encourages those governing locally in a MAT to play their part and have a meaningful role in strategy development, both trust wide and at a school level. The version for single schools provides advice on how this can be achieved in practice with clearly defined delegation and good lines of communication.

Emma Knights, Chief Executive National Governance Association said:

“Being Strategic is amongst the best known and highly regarded governing guides we produce. It’s simplicity and relatability has meant that it is often referred to during school and trust strategy development days and at training delivered to governors and trustees. I am very pleased with the refreshed content and the decision to provide two different versions. For MAT trustees and CEO in particular, a clearer recognition of their complexity, scale and what goes into bringing all your schools with you. Above all though, I am delighted that we continue to collaborate with NAHT and ASCL to produce Being Strategic and model this approach to those leading and governing”.


Paul Whiteman, general secretary of school leaders’ union NAHT, said:

“It’s imperative that school leaders and governing boards work together closely and collaboratively.

“A strong working relationship helps schools, encouraging ambition, innovation and progress. The updated guidance in this Being Strategic document will be a valuable resource, supporting governors and school leaders to improve planning and outcomes for their school.”


Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said:

“The updated version of this guidance helps to support the strong relationships between school leaders, trustees and governors which are vitally important in supporting our excellent teachers and support staff, and achieving the goal we all want to achieve – the best possible outcomes for all our pupils.”