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  • Wake Up Wednesday...

    Published 17/04/24

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  • Exeter school celebrates the birthday of the bard!

    Published 26/04/24

    West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, celebrated Shakespeare’s birthday this week.

    William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon, England, in April 1564. The exact date of his birth is not recorded, but it is most often celebrated around the world on the 23rd of April.  Shakespeare also died on 23 April; in 1616, when he was 52 years of age.

    The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust states that: 

    Shakespeare’s baptism is recorded in the Parish Register at Holy Trinity Church, Stratford-upon-Avon on Wednesday 26 April 1564. Baptisms typically took place within three days of a new arrival, and parents were instructed by the Prayer Book to ensure that their children were baptised no later than the first Sunday after birth. This means that it’s unlikely that Shakespeare was born any earlier than the previous Sunday, 23 April. Given that three days would be a reasonable interval between birth and baptism, 23 April has therefore come to be celebrated as his birthday. 

    To mark the day, Year 8 students at West Exe School explored some of the most memorable scenes from Shakespeare’s most famous plays.  The school is also holding a creative writing script competition to discover any budding playwrights!

    At West Exe they explicitly teach in depth social and literary contexts to ensure that students have the cultural capital to appreciate how the written word can be used to bring about social change and, more importantly, social justice.  The English curriculum is deliberately academic and covers a broad range of contexts that are designed to inform students’ interpretation of texts and ideas, this allows students to explore perspectives outside of their own, to promotes a greater understanding and appreciation of difference and diversity.

     Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “It was great to celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday this week, his plays remain such a core part of young people’s literary journey and I am excited to see the submissions for the creative writing competition.” 

    Moira Marder, CEO of the Ted Wragg Trust said:

    “I was delighted to hear that West Exe School marked Shakespeare’s birthday in appropriate dramatic fashion by exploring some of his most memorable scenes.  Learning more about the author is such a helpful way of bringing texts to life for students and helps everything they learn to really stick with them.”

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  • Exeter school serves up ‘root to stem’ lunch

    Published 26/04/24

    Aspens Services, the catering company at West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, have served up a ‘no waste’ lunch for students this week.

    Nothing was wasted in the preparation of the ‘root to stem’ meals which included a variety of dishes that are good for both people and the planet!

    On the menu on Tuesday the 23rd of April was:

    • Chickpea and vegetable stew
    • Arrabiata stew with crispy parsnip and skin on mash
    • No waste mince and onion pie and skin on mash

    Aspens Services, is a market leading contract catering company specialising in school food and they often put on themed menus to tie in with special awareness or cultural days.  Aspens are passionate about serving fresh, high quality and locally sourced food.

    Food available at West Exe includes a choice of hot meals each day (including a vegetarian option), a pasta bar, salads and sandwiches, as well as drinks and snacks.  A free breakfast is also provided to all students at the school from 8.15-8.30am daily in the canteen.  Students can also access Chrome books during this time to allow them to work on any extended practice they may have. 

     Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “It was great to offer up these ‘no waste’ dishes on the lunch menu this week, especially as it was Earth Day on Monday.  It’s brilliant for our students to try all sorts of different dishes and anything that focuses their minds on both healthy eating and the sustainability of the planet can only be a good thing in my book!”

    Moira Marder, CEO of the Ted Wragg Trust said:

    “It’s great to hear that Aspens are doing such great work at West Exe to offer students a range of, not only delicious, but thought-provoking meals.  I know they have some really creative chefs that work hard to provide schools with a wide variety of exciting cuisines.”

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  • Exeter students learn about bright futures in the solar industry

    Published 26/04/24

    Students from West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, attended a solar careers fair this month.

    Year 8 and 9 students went along to Exeter College and met with representatives from a number of companies involved in the solar industry.

    The students also played a highly competitive game of giant Jenga, took part in a quiz, which one of the Year 9 teams won, and attended talks on the ‘Future of Solar’.

    As the world shifts towards a low-carbon future, the demand for clean energy sources is increasing.  One of the fastest-growing areas of renewable energy is solar power, which has seen tremendous growth in recent years.  

    By 2035, the solar industry is expected to support around 60,000 jobs in the UK, that’s up from around 7,000 in 2020 – representing a significant increase in demand for skilled workers in the sector. 

     Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “It was great for some of our students to go along to the fayre and learn all about an industry they might not have considered working in before.  At West Exe we want young people to leave us ready for the jobs of the future, so examining careers in the renewable energy sector makes total sense.  

    “It was also lovely to hear that one of the exhibitors commented that our students asked the best, most insightful and challenging questions of any of the schools in attendance!”

    Moira Marder, CEO of the Ted Wragg Trust said:

    “At the Ted Wragg Trust we are keen for all local educational institutions to come together for the benefit of young people, as such I am delighted that some West Exe students attended this event at Exeter College.  It’s brilliant to hear they were asking some really thought-provoking questions of industry professionals.”

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  • Student courtroom drama unfolds thanks to University of Exeter Law Society

    Published 26/04/24

    Students from West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, represented the school at a mock trial recently. 

    The mock trial event was run by the University of Exeter Law Society and hosted by the Maynard School.  The students were given some witness statements and then had to prepare and present part of the prosecution’s case against the defendant. 

    Despite having never done anything like this before, they did a phenomenal job of preparing an opening statement and writing examination-in-chief and cross-examination questions, all in a very short amount of time.

    The event was presided over by a retired Circuit Judge, some circuit judges deal specifically with criminal or civil cases, while some are authorised to hear public and/or private law family cases, and some sit across a range of jurisdictions.  Others may sit more or less on a full-time basis in specialised civil jurisdictions, such as Chancery or as judges of the Technology and Construction Court.   There are currently over 600 circuit judges throughout England and Wales.

    The University of Exeter Law Society supports its members from the moment they join their legal community through to graduation and beyond.  They support their members through law school with academic, careers and welfare events, and provide an array of extra-curricular activities such as advocacy, mooting, intramural sport and pro-bono volunteering.  The Maynard School is the South West's top school & a leading UK Independent Girls School.

    Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “I am so glad that some West Exe students took part in this mock trial, and I am very grateful to the University of Exeter and the Maynard’s School for enabling them to.  I was delighted to hear that the retired Circuit Judge stated that our team was excellent and that we should be very proud of them, which of course we are!”

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  • Conversation Cafés at WES...

    Published 19/04/24

    Come along to our conversation cafés running through the summer to talk to the team, ask questions, have a tour and help us connect with our community...

    Scan the QR code below or click this link to let us know you are coming.

    We look forward to meeting you! 😃 ☕

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  • West Exe School take part in Sustrans Big Walk and Wheel

    Published 27/03/24

    Students at West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, are taking part in the 15th celebration of Sustrans #BigWalkAndWheel, the UK's largest inter-school walking, wheeling, scooting and cycling challenge.  Sustrans is a UK based walking, wheeling and cycling charity, and the custodian of the National Cycle Network. 

    The challenge aims to inspire hundreds of thousands of students to get active on the school run and over a period of 10 days, schools record the number of students walking, scooting or cycling to school.  Sustrans Big Walk and Wheel inspires students to improve air quality in their neighbourhood and discover how these changes benefit their world.

    At West Exe School, they are using sports leaders to go around to tutors each day and record the numbers for how students got to school.  The school is going to award prizes for the tutor group with the highest number across the 10 days in each year group and a prize for the overall tutor leading the scoreboard across all five years.  As a school, West Exe is also competing against different schools from across the country.

    Currently over two thousand schools are taking part across the country with 728, 953 children taking part, Sustrans has a live journey counter on their website, showing all the journeys that have been taken so far.  The challenge runs from the 11th to the 22nd of March.

    According to Cycling UK, on average just 2.2% of children cycle to school and 35.4% are driven, they estimate that if just one child cycled to school instead of travelling by car for a year, it would save almost half a tonne in carbon dioxide emissions, equivalent to growing eight trees for a decade or charging 58,388 mobile phones.

    Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “I am so proud that we are taking part in Sustrans Big Walk and Wheel challenge. Over 200 children at West Exe cycle to the school everyday and we also have a very active staffing body, many of whom choose to beat the traffic and ride in daily. 

    “ I am delighted that so many of our students make the choice to cycle in everyday and we will continue to support others to complete the training needed to feel safe and confident cycling to school.”

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  • New Dawn Martial Art Club comes to WES

    Published 21/03/24

    New Dawn Martial Arts will be running 2 clubs on a Wednesday (term time only):

    • 3.15 - 4.15pm for WES students (aged 11-15) – This is open to WES students only.

    • 4.30 - 5.30pm for Primary students (aged 7-11) – This is open to any of our primary feeder schools.

    On Wednesday, 27 March from 5.00 - 7.00pm there will be an opportunity for both age groups to sign up with their parents at the School. Two members of staff will be attending, one for each club sign up. We look forward to seeing you there!

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  • West Exe School students inflate their economic knowledge thanks to Exeter University students

    Published 20/03/24

    West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, welcomed members of the economics department from the University of Exeter to the school this month as part of a joint initiative from the university and the ‘Discover Economics’ programme.

    Discover Economics is on a mission to increase the diversity of economics students. They aim to broaden the appeal of economics to potential students, change their perceptions of economics and economists and attract more students from under-represented groups (women, state school/further education college students and minoritised ethnic groups).

    Budding economists and entrepreneurs taking GCSE Business Studies heard from three current Exeter university students who ran brilliant sessions looking at topics such as, what is gross domestic product and how your take home salary is affected at different income levels. Students were shocked at what their take-home salary would look like after they’ve paid their income tax and national insurance!

    The group went on to look at the government's current budget deficit, and what approaches politicians could take to address this. They had a large debate about whether tax should be increased for top earners and what other ways more income could be brought into the UK.

    The university students will be back again later this term to examine other careers in economics and answer questions.

    Economics students at the University of Exeter cover a variety of topics including inflation, monopoly control, the study of developing economies and the finance of multinational companies. The University is in the top ten in the UK for economics.

    Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “I want to say a big thank you to the Exeter University students who took the time to come and discuss economics with our Business Studies class. It was great for them to be introduced to some new concepts and to have them start thinking about the wider applications of what they are studying.”

    Debbie Du Preez, Economics lecturer and ‘Discover Economics’ lead at the University of Exeter said:

    “It is a privilege for us to go into the local state schools and promote Economics to a diverse set of learners. We want to transform learner perceptions of what “Economics” actually is and show them just how accessible and rewarding a career in Economics can be.”

    Moira Marder, CEO of the Ted Wragg Multi-Academy Trust said:

    “At the Ted Wragg Trust we are really keen to see organisations in our communities collaborate and this was a great example of how local educational institutions can work together for the benefit of all young people.”


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  • West Exe School staff help fundraise for Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival

    Published 18/03/24

    Staff from West Exe School and the Ted Wragg Trust attended a fundraising quiz for the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival this month.

    The festival this year will run from the 18th to the 22nd of September. As a registered charity, their mission is to celebrate books and their authors and promote the art of writing and the enjoyment of reading in the East Devon community and in other local schools.

    Chloe Fox, a Senior Leader at West Exe School and Carrie McMillan, Secondary Lead for South West Teacher Training were invited to attend the fundraiser quiz at the new cricket club to raise funds to facilitate the festival's target of reaching over 2000 children this year with their talks and workshops.

    Last year West Exe School hosted author Manjeet Mann to talk about her book as part of the Budleigh Literary Festival schools outreach program.  Her debut novel RUN, REBEL for young adults was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal in 2021 and won the CILIP Carnegie Shadowers Choice Award, The UKLA Award, Diverse Book Award and Sheffield Children's Book Award. It was also a Guardian best book of 2020. Manjeet’s second novel The Crossing, won the Costa Book Award for a Children’s Book in 2021 and was also named the Sunday Times Children's Book of the Week.  She also founded Run The World, a not for profit organisation that uses sport and theatre as a means to empower women and girls. 

    Sue Briggs Chairperson of the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival, said that she was thrilled to have Ted Wragg Trust schools as part of the programme and that she is looking forward to working more closely with the trust in the coming years.

    Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “Developing a lifelong love of reading makes all other forms of learning easier and at West Exe we will continue to put literacy at the heart of our curriculum.  I am looking forward to working closely with the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival team again this year; it’s clear how much benefit their outreach programme brings to students. We have taken part in their poetry slam competition several times too (even winning it once!). These events bring the written word to life for our students and we are very proud to be associated with the festival.”

    Moira Marder, CEO of the Ted Wragg Trust said:

    “I am delighted that West Exe and Ted Wragg staff took the time to go and help fundraise for the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival.  It’s such a brilliant event and brings so much to the South West in terms of cultural capital.”


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  • It’s checkmate for Matford Brook in chess competition with West Exe

    Published 13/03/24

    West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, recently hosted their first inter-school chess competition with 9 of the school’s Year 8 students who attend a lunchtime Chess Club taking on their counterparts from Matford Brook.

    There were a few nerves alongside a lot of excitement amongst the students who were proud to represent the school.  Both sets of students played some excellent chess over the course of the afternoon, with a lot of incredibly close games as students got to grips with the pressure of playing under timed conditions for the first time. 

    The West Exe students ultimately won the majority of the games played, claiming an overall victory on the day!  Overall, it was a fantastic afternoon with students from both schools showing both a competitive spirit, as well as fantastic sportsmanship all round.

    Texts referencing the origins of chess date from the start of the seventh century.  The game received a surge in popularity in recent years following the TV show The Queen’s Gambit which centres on a woman trying to become a chess champion.

     Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    "I am delighted that West Exe students won our very first inter-school chess tournament and want to offer everyone who took part a big congratulations!  Watching our Year 7s take such joy not just in their chess, but in hosting students from MBA was the highlight of my week.  I am incredibly proud of them all."

    Moira Marder, CEO of the Ted Wragg Multi-Academy Trust said:

    “It was great to hear that West Exe has hosted this chess challenge and to see that so many students were excited to take part.  Many congratulations to the West Exe students for their victory.”

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  • West Exe students triumph at Philosothon UK!

    Published 21/02/24

    Several students from West Exe School, part of the Ted Wragg Trust, recently took part in Philosothon UK.

    A Philosothon is a friendly “competition” between small teams in which students participate in a series of “Communities of Inquiry” and are judged by the quality of their participation. Students are asked to consider open-ended questions which require an extended response and typically involve appeal to more than one discipline. 

    Students are asked to have a conversation in mixed age group teams about a clearly defined philosophical or ethical issue. They are judged by professional philosophers from local universities on the level of their engagement with the topic and with each other.

    Following on from their impressive performance in the University of Oxford Schools’ Debating Competition, Mia Wyatt and Amelie Walch in Year 10, joined together with Year 11s Poppy O’Neale and Evie Kane and Year 9s Flo Richardson and Klara Oczko to represent West Exe School at Philosothon UK. 

    The whole team was amazing, making some really insightful comments and respectfully challenging or questioning the views of the students from the other competing schools.  At the end of the evening, Evie came second in her age-range scoring a fantastic 77/100, agonisingly missing out on finishing joint first by one point.

     Julie Fossey, Headteacher at West Exe School said:

    “I am so proud of every student who represented West Exe at Philosothon UK, they did fantastically well.  There is a perception that philosophy is an outdated, navel gazing subject, however the critical thinking aspects it promotes are relevant to all sorts of issues and careers in modern day life.  At West Exe we know it’s not just what you know that’s important but your ability to question information and come to your own conclusions and embracing philosophy is a great way of promoting that.”

    Moira Marder, CEO of the Ted Wragg Multi-Academy Trust said:

    “It’s brilliant to hear how well the students from West Exe did at Philosothon UK, everyone at the trust is so proud of their efforts and achievements at this national platform.”

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