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Respected educator appointed to NZQA

9 June 2005

Respected educator and public servant appointed to NZQA

The Chief Executive and Chief Review Officer of the Education Review Office, Karen Sewell, has been appointed Acting Chief Executive of the Qualifications Authority.

Karen Sewell is taking unpaid leave from ERO to take up the position with the Qualifications Authority for four months, starting Monday.

Acting Qualifications Authority Board Chair Catherine Gibson said she was delighted to have Karen Sewell on board.

"Karen has more than thirty years experience in the education sector and is widely respected. The Board has every confidence that she has the experience and skills to lead this organisation over the next four months."

"Her main role will be to oversee NCEA and Scholarship exams this year, as well as setting the foundations for quality assurance requirements for the future.

"The Board will look at appointing a permanent Chief Executive when the outcome of the Education Sector Review is known."

Karen Sewell said she was looking forward to working at the Qualifications Authority.

"NCEA is one of the most significant changes for raising student achievement in New Zealand in the last 15 years. I am pleased to have the opportunity to support its implementation."

Catherine Gibson acknowledged the support of the State Services Commission in facilitating Karen Sewell's release from ERO and also thanked Human Resources Manager Graham Huckstep who has been Acting Chief Executive since Karen Van Rooyen resigned last month.

Karen Sewell has been a secondary school teacher and principal, President of the Auckland Secondary Schools Principals' Association, and Chairperson of the New Zealand Post Primary Teachers' Association Principals' Council. While in these roles Karen represented principals as a member of the NZQA Principals' Lead Group. She joined ERO in 1997 and was appointed Chief Review Officer in 2001.


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