West Exe School awarded national anti-bullying award
West Exe School have gained a national anti-bullying silver award from the Anti-Bullying Quality Mark UK (ABQM-UK) to recognise that anti-bullying has been embedded in life at school. The remarkable efforts of the school team, made up of students, staff, parents and governors, meant their application for a bronze award was upgraded to silver during the review process.
The ABQM-UK award challenges schools to demonstrate their effectiveness in anti-bullying and the prevention of harassment. School communities that gain the Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards can show that:
- Children and young people come to school without the fear of being bullied or harassed
- Staff members respond to all aspects of bullying behaviour and harassment with confidence
- Families are confident that they know who to approach about bullying and harassment and that it will be dealt with efficiently and effectively.
Julie Fossey, Headteacher comments "We are so proud of our anti-bullying ambassadors for being fundamental in achieving The Anti-Bullying Quality Mark - Silver award. This award is testament to the caring and nurturing environment the staff work so hard to create each and every day, and the support from parent and carer advocates."
At their last inspection in June 2022, Ofsted stated: ‘At West Exe Pupils’ mental health and wellbeing is a priority and pupils know how to stay safe and keep safe online’.
West Exe School, which is part of the Ted Wragg Trust, has embedded a school Anti-Bullying Strategy. The team at West-Exe will now be looking to share best practice and advice with partner schools across the Trust, as they do across all aspects of school life for the benefit of students across the region.
Students, parent and carers have been actively involved in the development of positive relationships in the school, supported by staff who tailor bullying prevention to individuals and their circumstances. Together they have embedded this into the culture of the school and its routinely reinforced through assemblies and flagship events like anti-bullying week.
Student anti-bullying ambassadors have received accredited Diana Award training so that they are prepared and equip with the skills they need to support students who had been bullied or were experiencing friendship difficulties.
A year 10 student from West Exe said; “I have enjoyed my role as a student anti-bullying ambassador; the training we have been given on how to support others and avoid being a bystander has been very helpful.”
Parent advocates have worked closely with us and the community to support the school, parents and students. We are particularly grateful to Paula Northway for her work with us triangulating communication with the wider community, the creation of a range of advice leaflets as well as for running the ‘You are not alone Café’.
Staff anti-bullying champions who meet with students on a regular basis, ensure student voices are listened to and that areas raised as a concern are reviewed, revised and developed to mitigate/minimise future occurrence.
Emma Gulliver, Senior leader at West Exe comments; "Many of our children will not experience bullying, nor will they know the full story behind the actions we take and the work going on. This award helps us to celebrate all the great work we do that will be unnoticed to most. The ABQM-UK's support has helped us with our self-evaluation and will continue to be instrumental in our efforts, as we work towards the Gold award!"
This award is a recognition of the inclusive school culture developed by staff, students, parents and governors. It has been an exceptional year for West Exe, who were awarded a ‘Good’ in all areas by Ofsted in their last visit in June 2022. 7 out of 10 students left West Exe last year with a grade 5 or above in both English and Maths, achieving some of the highest progress score in the South West. We could not be prouder of them.