Headteacher of Primary School Latest NESA Examination Questions And Answers.

  1. What do the following abbreviations stand for?


CPD: continuous professional development

CoP: community of practice

PLC: professional learning community

SGAC: School General Assembly Committee

SIP: school improvement plan


  1. What are characteristics of strong leaders for learning in education?
  • They focus relentlessly on improving teaching and learning with the very effective professional development of all staff.
  • They believe that disadvantage should not be a barrier to success nor should it be an excuse.
  • They are highly inclusive for the progress and personal development of every pupil.
  • They have a strong strategic direction for the school, known and shared by all stakeholders, which is regularly reviewed.
  • They cultivate a range of partnerships –particularly with parents and the community – to support pupil learning and progress.
  • They work with other school leaders and education officers as partners in driving improvement for all
  1. As future school headteacher, how can you engage in your own professional learning?



  • NLLs, LLLs and other headteachers engage in regular PLC sessions focusing on driving learning improvements

You may like to volunteer to lead part of a PLC session.


Many headteachers will have opportunities to coach and be coached, to strengthen leadership for learning.

Participating in coaching is a powerful experience – both as a coach and as a learning partner.

Other CPD

Taking advantage of opportunities to attend training  events organised by your school, REB or another partner Doing your own independent learning e.g via an online  course (many are free!).

  1. How can you create a whole school vision and mission focused on learning?
  • Keep all stakeholders informed about progress towards the vision
  • Ensure that all meetings have a focus on learning.
  • Ensure teacher appraisal targets have appraisal targets have a focus on improving learning.
  • Respond positively to your SGAC’s efforts to strengthen learning outcomes.
  • Work with your SBM, SSLs and SEN specialist to drive the mission.
  • Make sure your SIP has powerful learning-focused objectives.
  1. How can I promote a whole-school culture of learning?
  • They promote and maintain an environment with high expectations and believe that all pupils can learn successfully.
  • They ensure that the staff of the school demonstrate an understanding of the importance of positive and caring relationships to successful learning, and work to build mutually respectful relationships across the school community.
  • They view parents and families as integral members of the school community and partners in pupil learning.
  • They place a high priority on pupil and staff well-being and have processes in place to provide both academic and non-academic support to address individual needs.
  • They ensure that staff create a stimulating physical environment that supports and encourages learning.
  • They ensure that the school promotes a culture of inquiry and innovation, where creative exploration and independent learning are also valued.
  • They ensure that all pupils and staff have an obvious sense of belonging, all parents are welcome, and all stakeholders speak highly of the school.
  1. How can you get more parents and guardians engaged in their children’s learning?
  • Help individual teachers to invite parents into their classrooms.
  • Work with your SGAC to organize a meeting with parents and guardians.
  • Share guidelines on how parents can help their children to learn.
  1. How will you ensure effective inclusion throughout your school?
  • Provide CPD on inclusive education for all staff, including making it a focus for classroom observation and appraisal.
  • Provide hands-on practical support in meeting individual learners’ needs e.g. adapting facilities, developing appropriate learning aids, setting appropriate learning
  • Show that you care and understand about the challenges in implementing an inclusive curriculum, make it a regular topic  of discussion.
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