CEO Message - July 2024 : Exams Officer of the Year 2024

At our recent Summer Conference (held at Leeds United Football Club on 28 June), Kirsty Wilson, exams officer at The Cherwell School, Oxford, was announced as the Exams Officer of the Year for 2024.

The NAEO would like to congratulate Kirsty – and the runners up (John O’Meara from Rickmansworth School and Katie Sebire from Elizabeth College, Guernsey) - on her achievement and we look forward in supporting her professional development during the 2024/25 academic year.

Kirsty excelled in the following areas which define excellence whilst performing the role of exams officer:

  • Positive change within their centre or beyond, and/or
  • Devising innovative processes which promote efficiency and effectiveness, and/or
  • Creating procedures which guarantee the integrity and security of the examination system, and a 'level playing field' for candidates, within their centre, and/or
  • Having affected a positive influence amongst their peers

 As part of Kirsty’s nomination, her senior leadership team described Kirsty as ‘…a true asset to the school and the wider Trust… (with her) constant innovation in streamlining our systems so students and staff get the best possible exams experience. This includes evolving the centre’s systems in partnership with the SEND team to give outstanding support to candidates requiring access arrangements and providing advice and guidance to exams officers across the Trust. Kirsty’s work and innovation also provides significant support for her senior leadership team in solving problems, create refinements and manage situations expertly’.

Amongst her peers, Kirsty is seen as an exams officer who ‘exhibits excellence’ in her role as she continually strives to improve the integrity and security of the examination system at The Cherwell School, particularly across the most current issues such as cyber security and artificial intelligence.

Finally, Kirsty consistently goes ‘over and beyond’ what is expected of her by supporting others, including providing training for the new exams officers within her Trust, answering queries from exams officers within her Trust and local to her centre, and promoting a Trust-wide exams officer network initiative to provide a forum to share ideas, good practices and support.

It is important that outstanding contributions made by exams officers such as Kirsty, John and Katie (and the ten shortlisted exams officers) is recognised across the wider education sector to raise the status and profile of the exams officer role and the exams officer community.

Over the next 12 months the NAEO will be collaborating with organisations representing senior leaders to ensure that their members recognise the role played by their exams officer and to encourage them to consider nominating their exams officer for the 2025 Exams Officer of the Year award if they have delivered excellence in the four key areas listed above.

We also encourage exams officers to nominate their peers if they feel that they have received outstanding support from a fellow exams officer, and help us in achieving one of our core aims - raising the profile and status of the exams officer role and wider exams officer community.

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