You don't have to wait for government policy to change!  You can set up your own accredited school or college Baccalaureate, recognising achievement in all its forms, right now! 


The aim of the NBT accreditation process is to facilitate a grass-roots Baccalaureate movement.  We want to encourage and support schools and colleges to provide a broad range of learning opportunities to students, allowing them to gain formal recognition for their achievements in multiple areas.  

The National Baccalaureate Trust is not an official awarding body but our national peer-to-peer accreditation process and badging will lend credibility and validation to the programmes that schools and colleges devise, aligning them to criteria that ensure every programme is of high quality. 

Follow the guidance presented here to find out if you are ready to offer a Baccalaureate for your school, college, MAT or school/college alliance.  We have an accreditation window closing in March 2023 and another closing in June aiming for schools and colleges to be ready to launch in September 2023. 

Your  school, college or wider organisation - your centre - will offer a Baccalaureate Programme that is accredited by NBT.  This should be called The Centre Baccalaureate eg.  The Foxwood Academy Baccalaureate, or The West Sussex Baccalaureate

The programme should span at least two years so that students all have time to work towards completing their full Baccalaureate in a steady, integrated manner with time to engage in authentic, rich experiences over the full time period.  This might be: 

Beyond any initial piloting phase, students should know they are aiming to complete their Baccalaureate programme from the start; they should not be awarded retrospectively.

Every NBT-accredited Baccalaureate programme must include the following three components that a student would need to complete in order to be awarded their centre’s Baccalaureate award. 

The final level of the Baccalaureate Award is determined by the level of the core learning, for example Primary; KS3; Entry Level, Foundation L1, Intermediate L2, Advanced L3.

Alongside the certification process, centres should issue a transcript that captures the content of each learner’s Baccalaureate programme.   Ideally this will be created and stored digitally.  We will ask for information about your plans for doing this. In order to gain NBT accreditation, each centre should submit an outline of the structure and content of each of the three Baccalaureate elements. We will use a desk-top evaluation process supported by peer review where necessary and helpful to determine whether the programme meets our criteria. Centres will need to show that their Baccalaureate Programmes match our six core principles and fulfil our core content criteria: 

The programme should be available to students across the spectrum of attainment in the centre. It should not be an elite programme or restricted to students in any attainment category.  Numbers may be limited by capacity in a piloting phase but they should still span the attainment range.

The programme should be aspirational - aiming to engage students in activities and learning that raises their expectations of themselves. 

The elements of the programme should offer appropriate challenge for all learners.  The criteria must be met in order to complete the Baccalaureate and this should represent a significant achievement. 

The elements of the personal development programme should encompass a wide range of activities to broaden students’ learning experience overall. 

The balance of core learning and personal development should be such that specialist areas of learning are complemented by activities in other areas. 

The whole Baccalaureate should be presented as one holistic award for students rather than an add-on. The core learning is part of the Baccalaureate; all three elements must make up the Bacc award.  

For KS4 and post-16, students’ core curriculum must be included in the overall Baccalaureate at the appropriate level for the award, e.g. 

Centres should award a Baccalaureate at appropriate level to match the core standards reached but learners should still be able to achieve the Baccalaureate whatever level they do reach. 

Primary and KS3 Baccalaureate core programmes do not need to be tiered by outcomes; students simply need to complete the programmes of study as determined by the centre.  

All students must complete this element of the Baccalaureate. In general the project should have the following features: 

Centres can enter students for the Extended Project Qualification or any other formal project qualification which fully meets our criteria.  


We won’t accept class projects.  Small group projects are accepted provided that each student’s contribution is significant and they can demonstrate full understanding of every element.  We won’t accept projects completed in one-off events such as drop-down days.  They must represent sustained study over a period of time.

All students must complete this element of the programme.  It can be completed combining activities undertaken outside the taught curriculum and  outside the school or college with some taught elements, provided that:

The programmes can vary in scope and structure; we encourage centres to capitalise on the resources and provision available in the organisation or wider community to offer programmes that are accessible whilst also providing the breadth and depth of learning experience students need to complement their core learning.

As a rough guide, a programme will represent 80-100 hours of activity across two years. Typically a programme will require students to complete a minimum level of activity in at least three or four of a set of defined areas which we envisage will include some or all of the following: 

These can be grouped together and defined in multiple ways.  Centres can be creative in the way they express the elements of their programmes; the accreditation process will verify that programmes have sufficient breadth alongside the accessibility and flexibility needed to enable all students to succeed.  

Programme requirements should use a form of tariff that indicates the scale and weighting of each component.  Most commonly, centres will use hours.  Eg. The total personal development programme should total 100+ hours with a minimum of 15 hours in each of four areas.  Specific activities can then be given a weighting, e.g:

Accreditation windows will be opened and closed at intervals to manage the process in stages.  Accredited centres will receive a formal certificate, guidance, logos and certification templates.  We will establish a website and membership structure so that accredited schools receive information and updates and can share their programmes, questions and successes.  We hope to work with Rethinking Assessment on the development of their Digital Profile.  Meanwhile, we will provide a template that centres can use and a Google Form or similar generic digital tool to capture and display the key information for their transcripts. 


Get ready to launch your accredited school or college Baccalaureate programme from September 2023.

The National Baccalaureate Trust recognises that the policy-making process will take years to agree and enact in the full detail we’d like to see. So, in parallel with the policy lobbying, the NBT has decided to reinvigorate the centre-devised model, offering the opportunity to any school, primary or secondary and any college to offer its own accredited Bacc programme from September 2023.