A secondary school staff member from Hove has won a national prize after coming with an app for exams.
John Gaston, the exams officer at Hove Park School, invented Examscreen to meet “the need for a clear and consistent way to display exam information”.
Mr Gaston also hoped that it would be a way of “improving student experience and reducing workload for exam officers and invigilators”.
Now his idea has earned him a £5,000 prize and the app has been adopted by more than 600 schools.
Examscreen won second prize in the Cool Initiatives Education Challenge competition where it also picked up the People’s Choice award worth an extra £500.
The Cool Initiatives Education Challenge is a national competition “for teachers, school staff or start-ups with great ideas to revolutionise teaching and learning in schools”.
Examscreen was described as a “one-stop tool for exam halls” by Cool Initiatives, an “early stage investor” in education and educational technology – or “edtech”.
Cool Initiatives put up prize money and funding totalling £17,500 – with, it said, “no financial strings attached” – to teachers, school staff or start-ups “who offer an innovative edtech solution to change the face of education as we know it today”.
Mr Gaston created Examscreen towards the end of last year and impressed the judges with a simple solution “that has proven so popular that through word of mouth alone over 600 schools now regularly use it”.
He said: “I decided to create Examscreen because I saw that there was a gap for a tool that would standardise and professionalise exams across the UK with many benefits to the individual schools and students.
“With the help of Cool Initiatives, I can now take Examscreen much further in the UK and potentially internationally.
“I’m delighted to have won two of the awards for the Cool Initiatives Education Challenge 2019 and I’m excited to see where Examscreen will go next.”
Cool Initiatives founder Jon Thornes said: “Having been involved in the education sector for many years, I know first-hand the transformative potential of edtech in schools.
“Examscreen is a fantastic example of the inspiring work happening to help improve the essential systems that are fundamental to our schools.
“It’s an honour to be able to support, develop and invest in such ideas and start-ups.”
For more information about Examscreen, visit examscreen.co.uk.
For more information about Cool Initiatives, visit www.coolinitiatives.com.