Specialty schools are virtual structures that serve to bring together the providers of postgraduate medical education in a particular specialty or group of specialties to shared best practice, ensure consistency of approach and collaborate to provide educational initiatives where best delivered 'once for London'. Schools each have specialty advisory groups that provide fora for the coordination of pan-London collaboration.
Specialty schools in secondary care specialties bring together networks of lead providers across London (and in some cases London and KSS), for general practice, are based within each of the three London local education and training boards (LETBs) and for public health managed from Health Education North Central and East London on behalf of London and the South East. Each school is led by Head of Specialty who acts as a workforce adviser to the education commissioners, leads on quality management within their specialty, supports and develops lead providers and provides regional representation in national fora. All heads of specialty are jointly appointed by Health Education England (through LETBs) and the royal college for that specialty.
Trainees who have accepted an offer from the Operations team (working on behalf of HENWL, HENCEL and HESL) are assigned to a lead provider but automatically enrolled within the school representing their specialty.
Schools are supported by the shared Operations team and a small number of administrators within the three LETBs. Heads of Specialty operate in accordance with the policies and procedures of Health Education England, and the curricula and regulatory requirements of medical royal colleges and the General Medical Council.