Teacher and senior figure in business studies

Born: January 10, 1940;

Died: December 21, 2018

JANET MacKenzie, who has died aged 78, was a senior teacher and a leading figure in the Scottish Qualifications Authority who oversaw the setting and correcting of all business studies examinations for Scotland.

She was born in Inverarish on the island of Raasay in 1940, the second of the late John and Kate MacLeod’s three children. She attended Raasay Primary School until her family moved to Portree when she was in primary seven. She completed her schooling at Portree High School. Always athletic, she was in the school’s relay team and represented Portree High in the North of Scotland School Championships. She was also a member of the school’s choir.

Following school, she left Skye for Glasgow, and studied at Strathclyde University before completing her postgraduate teaching course at Jordanhill College of Education. Her first teaching post was in Airdrie, and from there she returned to Portree High School where she established and developed the school’s business studies department – teaching accounting, economics and secretarial subjects. Due to her drive and enthusiasm the department was regarded as one of the best in the Highlands.

She was awarded a fellowship of the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) in recognition of her work and service as secretary and treasurer of the Skye and Lochalsh Local Association of the institute.

In 1976 she was promoted to assistant headteacher at Portree High and she remained in that post until her marriage to Ewen in 1982, when the couple set up home in Newton Mearns. She then went on to teach in Kilmarnock and, until her retirement, at Whitehill Secondary in Glasgow.

For many years, she was a member of the Scottish Qualifications Authority. Latterly, she oversaw the setting and correcting of all business studies examinations for Scotland. Janet MacKenzie took this onerous task – which few would be capable of, even if willing – in her stride.

Until two years ago, she was the treasurer of the Glasgow Skye Association – a role which enabled her to keep in touch with her old school in Portree, as the association sponsors its Dux medal every year.

Another role which kept her busy was her work for the Free Church of Scotland (Continuing). She was responsible for all church administration – attending the General Assembly every year and preparing all necessary reports and accounts.

A wonderful teacher, her dedication to her subject and her pupils was second to none. She inspired countless young people and passed on a genuine love of her subject. Miss MacLeod – and then Mrs MacKenzie as she was later known – greatly respected her pupils, and this respect was reciprocated and her pupils held her in great affection.

Colleagues knew her as helpful and always considerate of the feelings of others – which endeared her to all. Everyone who worked with her held her in very high regard.

She will be remembered as a happy person, who brought out the best in everyone she encountered. Elegant, lovely and – despite all her gifts – very modest.

Family was very important to her and she and Ewen were devoted to each other. She came from a close and loving family, and she always spoke with great affection of them all: Joan and John, her sister and brother; Joan’s husband, George; John’s wife, Elma; her beloved nieces and nephews – Iain, Douglas, Karen and Alison.