Appointee Management Case Studies

Derek Brockett — Setter

Working at computer.I am currently employed as Principal Teacher at Lockerbie Academy. I have been a teacher of Drama for twenty two years —I don’t know how all those years just flew by, but they did.

I became a Standard Grade Marker as well as Moderator. As a sole teacher at the time, this was the best in-service that I ever got. Since then things have evolved and the numbers who sit the subject have increased at every level. I first became joint-setter for Higher Drama in 2002. I now set the whole paper.

You get to meet an interesting group of colleagues from all over the country. You also realise pretty soon that most people share the same concerns, and the issues that you thought were particular to you are replicated throughout. Everyone is keen to pitch standards at the right level to the satisfaction of all Drama colleagues — a tall order but laudable nonetheless. It has been a privilege to work with colleagues who demonstrate such a high level of commitment and dedication. Yes, it is a lot of extra work, but you do get to become a real authority on standards and the related standardisation procedures.

Taking part in SQA duties has helped me to fully understand every quirk and every nuance of the SQA documentation on my subject. You can get a great deal out of reading things, but you get even more when you can discuss things and then ‘put your money where your mouth is’. I have had to put my ideas and standards under the scrutiny of my colleagues at national level — scary, but comforting when you get it right. As a part of the SQA ‘team’, you don’t get to hear about things second-hand, and the fear re getting things wrong dissipates as you get more confident each year.

I have advised many colleagues to get involved with SQA. Not one has come back to me to say they regretted the experience. You get such an insight. You can compare your standards with the national standards at close quarters. You will also meet lots of colleagues — and catch up with plenty of old friends.

Don’t think twice. Everyone is apprehensive at the start, but your confidence will soar.