I’ll come clean now.
I am a marking expert.
That’s not me giving it “the Big I Am.” It’s fact. I marked in 1988 for the NEAB (I think?) and have done ever since, on and off, with internal exams as an English teacher, head of English since 1996 and with exam boards across GCSE and A Level English Language and English Literature for some of my 31 year career.
I’m a master craftsman with a red pen; an artist at interpreting and applying mark schemes; a ninja at giving diagnostic feedback.
Ok, that is me getting carried away – but you catch my drift?
I mark GCSE English Language and English Literature papers from October half term to summer every year and since I gave up teaching and took on self employment as a writer, social media manager and website partner, demand for my red pen skills has risen year on year.
In October annually, I mark mock exams for a large Multi Academy Trust, November to December overseas O levels, January to July, mock exams for 11 schools and for three examination boards.
Sad to admit it, but a part of me enjoys it: reading pupils’ work, seeing responses to texts ingrained in my subconscious for 30 years – “Animal Farm”, “Lord of the Flies”, “Romeo and Juliet”, poetry from exam boards like AQA, Edexcel, OCR and WJEC.
I remember the days of marking coursework, which became controlled assessments and their gradual disappearance and morphing into terminal exams.
When a pack of 250 scripts lands from Hermes, DPD with another the next day, I wonder how departments actually cope.
You can always adopt the Boxer mantra of “I will work harder” but we know how he ended up with that work outlook.
There’s an easier way – you pay me to mark them.
I don’t work, in the conventional sense, you see.
I don’t have the brain fog of five performances a day to classes, along with the massive workload of planning and assessment that is part and parcel of schools.
I can see clearly now my personal rain of teaching has gone.
My day begins as it always did: get up at 6.30 am, get showered and dressed, eat breakfast but then my commute is 13 steps and 10 paces from kitchen to home office.
A workplace where I’m on permanent PPA, have no meetings, have achievable targets and tea and coffee on tap all day (with teaspoons aplenty – why are there never any in staffrooms?).
You email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or ring me on my mobile which is permanently glued to my body, tell me what you need marking and when, how many papers, which board, I open my diary and book you in.
I’ll send you a costed proposal, a copy of my CRB certificate, and details of who I mark for so you can see I walk the walk, and you implore SLT to pay for it to save your department time, improve morale, knowing those 250, 500, 1000 exams will be marked within 2 weeks to a consistently high standard, with results collated and development points raised for your team and students.
Once confirmed, you can develop a hernia as Head of English or exams officer carting the scripts to a Post Office for delivery to me in the Far East (Norfolk).
I mark them and invoice your school for costs including return postage and you relax knowing those GCSE English Language papers and English Literature papers set over Year 10 and Year 11 are in expert hands.
This last month, 4 new schools have signed up.
Do you want to be the fifth, sixth or seventh?
Email me: email@example.com or go direct with 07462923476 and I promise it will be the best money your department, school or college will spend.