Working with Senior Leadership

Working with Senior Leadership is an important part of life in any school. As a music teacher, our relationship with Senior Leadership may well be a little different. It is important that we know what working with senior leadership should look like. In this 10 Minute CPD blog I will look at why this is important and what we can do to build positive and sustainable relationships.


Working with Senior Leadership is important because they run the school. We want to ensure that we have a good working relationship so that we can promote & protect our subject. As music teachers we often have unique demands and requests, especially when it comes to events and funding. We therefore need to ensure that we work well with those in leadership.

It sounds “wrong” but the why is important – if we want music to flourish, then teamwork with SLT is crucial.


Forging good relationships with senior leadership can take time, but it is worth the effort. One of the key messages of this blog is that not only is this important, but it is not something that will just “happen”. Obviously we know that our leadership will trust us to do our jobs, but when we want more from them, it can take time to build that relationship. So we do need to work with them, and not go off on our own tangent. There is nothing wrong with building trust and proving yourself, up to a point of course. I know that sometimes SLT can seem unsupportive, but don’t worry, there are things you can do.

Building good working relationships is key and here are some thoughts that I have picked up over the course of my career:

  1. Say yes when you can to any requests from SLT. If they require some music for an assembly, say yes. This promotes the subject and shows that you are willing to work with them.
  2. Offer solutions not just requests. We can easily go to SLT with lots of ideas for things we want. But do we ever offer solutions to the things they might want?
  3. Avoid too much moaning and banging on doors. Whilst our subject is worth the fight, we also need to balance that.
  4. Arrange meetings with them, turn up with an agenda and make sure that your ideas fit in with schools calendars and policies.
  5. Give your SLT something to be proud of in music. Put on great events and sit them front centre. They will love the chance to feel proud of the school.
  6. Don’t assume that they understand how music departments and extra-cuirroicular programmes are run. But also don’t forget that they might have a pretty good idea.

Working with Senior Leadership

In essence, working with Senior Leadership is an important part of our job. We have demands & needs in music that are unique and sometimes expensive. The more we can build good, positive working relationships with SLT, the better. So book a meant with your headteacher and take the all important step to proper teamwork between music & senior leadership.

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