13 October 2020

ISEB appoints new CEO

The Independent Schools Examinations Board (ISEB) is pleased to announce the appointment of a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to succeed Kate Allen. Kate will be retiring in March 2021 after five highly successful years in the role during which the Common Pre-Tests (CPTs) have developed and expanded, 13+ Common Entrance (CE) has been modernised and the ISEB Project Qualification launched. After an extensive search process, the ISEB has appointed Julia Martin, formerly Deputy Director of Product at Trinity College London (TCL), responsible for a multi-million-pound assessment portfolio for the awarding organisation. Julia has enjoyed a varied career which has included teaching at numerous levels (graduate, undergraduate, A level and GCSE) and even tutoring for CE. Passionate about education herself, Julia holds a BA in English Literature and Art History, an MA in Music and a PGCE, adapting her PhD study in digital creativity in the arts into a doctoral thesis on the impact of creative digital technology on learning at the University of Bristol.

An expert in digital transformation for heritage education brands, Julia has also led large cross-institutional projects in Higher Education at the University of Southampton and Brunel University London. She was Head at the Academy of Contemporary Music in Guildford, developing strategic FE and HE partnerships, leading successful inspection visits from Ofsted and the QAA, raising student numbers and developing highly innovative staff leadership and professional development programmes.

The significant growth and change Julia has brought to assessment products, digitisation and strategies at TCL means she brings a strategic understanding of assessment development, product management and educational publishing as well as hands-on understanding of developing and delivering assessment and customer support. She believes in innovation to enhance heritage brands and is comfortable working internationally and in the digital space where so much educational activity now takes place. Julia has experienced the independent sector as a pupil, teacher, committee member and parent - her children are in Years 6 and 4.

The ISEB Chair, Durell Barnes, said, ‘We are delighted to have appointed Julia Martin who brings extensive educational experience, academic leadership, strategic understanding of examination development and knowledge about examination delivery. She has great plans for the diversification and expansion of what ISEB has to offer to the independent sector and beyond, in this country and overseas. After a period of consolidation at ISEB, Julia will provide the vision and energy to take the company to the next stage of its development as a leading provider of assessment and curriculum development.’

Julia said, ‘Not only am I excited by the clear role the ISEB can take representing the sector within the wider education landscape but, just as importantly, the fantastic team that Kate has led and the world-leading educational expertise the board represents. To be working with such an inspiring group of people is an absolute privilege and holds the key to everything I know we can achieve in education together.’

Durell Barnes
ISEB Chair