Page 1

Academy newsletter

Summer 2019

Exmouth Colour Bomb What’s inside?

We’ve painted the beach to raise money for our New Deaf Academy Appeal!

• National Deaf Schools Sports Day 2019 • Aiden’s eagle eye for photography • A very special Tae Kwon Do grading • World of Work week • Our photo album

...and lots more


Dear Parents & Carers, What a difference a year makes! Firstly, thank you to all parents and carers for your support and encouragement over the last academic year. It has truly been a year of Pace, Passion and Purpose. We have successfully navigated five Ofsted Inspections (yes, five!) and, through the hard work of the whole Academy community, taken the provision out of special measures and on a pathway to greater things.

As always our inspiration is our students, and this year we have seen some fantastic achievements across all age groups. In addition the student council have been busy campaigning, challenging stereotypes and promoting understanding and positivity of deafness and British Sign Language. A special mention goes out to William Thomas who won this year’s Andrew Kensit Award for his significant contribution to supporting students.

move to Exmouth. The new build is going well; we are on target for an Easter 2020 move and are all getting very excited about our fantastic new campus.

Across the whole Academy we are now making final preparations for next year’s

With best wishes,

Please contact us if you would like a BSL version of this newsletter.

Finally, it is with sadness that we say farewell to the students and staff who are leaving us this summer. Their contribution to life at the Academy will be missed and we wish them all the best in the future. We hope you all have a restful summer break and see you in September.

Sylvan and Trudy Co-Principals

Email Text 07624 808 738

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


The Colour Bomb brightens up Exmouth beach

A spectacular rainbow of colour descended on Exmouth Beach on a sunny Sunday in July to raise money for our new academy...

Almost 200 people of all ages took part in the event which was organised by our fundraising team as part of our drive to hit our £250,000 fundraising appeal target to fund the build and fit out of the new Deaf Academy, which is being constructed on Exmouth’s Rolle College site.

Our runners ran, jogged and walked the 4k distance, taking them through a series of explosive colour bomb paint stations; afterwards participants and passers by enjoyed our mini family festival in Queens Drive Space with entertainment and live music. Shelley, who ran with her daughter Lottie, 13, said:

recommending it to all our friends.’ Sarah Shaw, our fundraising appeal manager, said:

‘This was the first time we’ve staged an event like this. We’d like to thank all of our fun runners who took part so enthusiastically which made it the most amazing, fun experience for

‘It was a fantastic day with an amazing familyfriendly atmosphere – we loved the run along the beach and the festival afterwards. My daughter and I will definitely be doing the Colour Bomb again next year, and will be

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


everyone taking part. The paint throwers did a great job - as demonstrated by the many people covered from head to toe in paint. ‘This was a fun event, but it was raising money for an important cause, the provision of a modern facility where young deaf people can learn and thrive. We’d like to thank all of our

supporters for helping us to make this a reality.’ We also want to say a great big thank you to all of the volunteers who turned up and pitched in, doing everything from marking out the course on the beach to hula hooping and samba dancing round the festival! With only nine months to go until the opening of the new

Academy you can still get involved and help to support our appeal. From taking part in a walking challenge to organising a cake bake, running a sweepstake or taking on our Santa Sizzle Firewalk in December, there are lots of ways to help. For more information visit our website or email the fundraising team at fundraising@

If you would like to find out more about supporting our fundraising efforts, turn to page 12 for an introduction to our appeal, and ideas about how you can get involved.

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


National Deaf Schools Track & Field day Earlier in July our school students headed to Heathlands school in St Albans for the annual Deaf Schools sports day. Defending their first place title, our students took part in activities such as the high jump, shot put, 100m, relay races and more. Unfortunately we just missed out on retaining our winners’ trophy, coming second place this year. Learning and Communications Services Manager Glen said:

Well done to Nissi, MK, Amy, Tom, James, Matthew, Sam, Oliver EC, Oliver P, Jay, Alex and Milan. We’re already looking forward to next year’s event!

‘Every student gave it their all. They behaved impeccably, supported each other, and were a true credit to the Academy.’ Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Photography ace Aiden visits Hawkridge Birds of Prey Centre College student Aiden has been taking his photography practice to the next level. Under the tutelage of Exmouthbased photographer Bryan Webb, Aiden’s photography skills have come on in leaps and bounds. In June they visited Hawkridge Bird of Prey Centre, based at Sandy Bay’s World of Country Life, to photograph some of the owls, eagles and other birds living there. Bryan said:

Exeter Deaf Academy

‘The visit to Hawkridge was a fantastic privilege and really, really good for Aiden’s work as a developing and learning ‘thinking photographer’; he was especially interested in photographing the American bald eagle. Everyone at the centre was very welcoming and friendly.’ You can see more of Aiden’s excellent photographs on our Facebook page: ExeterDeafAcademy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Exeter Deaf U-16s reach the FA People’s Cup final rounds A team of Deaf footballers from Exeter who qualified for the final rounds of the national FA People’s Cup performed superbly against some of the best youth disability teams in the country, narrowly missing out on the semi-finals of the competition. Five members of the squad attend Exeter Deaf Academy. The group, who play for Exeter CITY Community Trust’s Under 16s Deaf squad, had progressed through two rounds of the cup to compete at St George’s Park – the home of the FA and England’s 28 national teams. The Exeter team is made up of Aiden, James, Matthew, Alex and Tom who study here at the Deaf Academy, along with teammates Ryan, Seb and Jacob. They are coached by learning leader Ashley Parkes who also works here at the Academy. Ashley said: ‘I would like to say a huge thank you to Exeter City Supporters’ Trust, CITY Community Trust and Exeter Deaf Academy in supporting

Exeter Deaf Academy

this brilliant experience for the boys. They had a fantastic time at St George’s Park. Before the football tournament started you could see how much this meant to them - this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of being at the grounds where the England National teams train made us feel like professionals.’ ‘Unfortunately, the team did not achieve the winners’ medals, but in my eyes they are winners. They did amazingly well to reach this far in the tournament and gave 110% effort in the extreme windy and rainy conditions – what more can a coach ask for?’ Team captain Aiden said: Issue 9 - summer 2019

‘My experience of the trip was an amazing day and a load of fun times with team mates, parents and our coach as well. St George’s Park hotel had such a beautiful view, and was posh! ‘On the big day everyone was nervous and excited at the same time. Our boys tried their best and managed a few goals in each match. Next year we will get stronger and will be back to get our victory.’ Will Allan, CITY Community Trust’s disability officer, who travelled with the group, said: 8

‘We are very grateful to both Exeter Deaf Academy and Exeter City Supporters’ Trust. Both organisations made donations which paid for travel and accommodation, so the group could travel up to the event the night before and stay at the venue.’ The FA People’s Cup is the country’s largest and

most inclusive small-sided competition. It welcomes male, female and disability players across 15 categories - ranging from 11+ through to veterans (over 35s). This year’s competition saw over 4,000 teams compete at 240+ venues around the country as the first round kicked-off in February.

Will added:

‘It was a fantastic day and an amazing opportunity for this group of young players to experience playing at St Georges Park, the home of England’s national football teams.’

Ollie and Jack’s Team GB training session This term we were visited by two up and coming Great British under-18 decathlon athletes - Ollie Thorner and Jack Turner. Ollie and Jack visited us after Academy students took part in a ‘sponsored move’ to raise money for Inspired Through Sport, who help with funding athletes who represent Great Britain. They gave a presentation about their school lives, Exeter Deaf Academy

their training schedules and how they were chosen to represent Great Britain. Many of the Academy students have been inspired to try a taster session at Exeter Harriers Athletics Club because of this.

A big thank you to both athletes for visiting us we really enjoyed your presentation and training session. Good luck to both of you for your upcoming events!

After the presentation Ollie and Jack led a training session for the students to practice doing long jump and high jump. During break time Jay and Milan taught them both how to fingerspell their names in BSL. Issue 9 - summer 2019


World of Work week Helping our students to explore employment opportunities and think about their futures is a crucial part of the work we do here at the Academy. During World of Work week in July our young people visited a range of different employers, to learn about what they do and what it’s like to work for them. A range of employers from the Met Office to Ikea welcomed us into their workplaces and gave talks and tours to show us how they work. We also held a

A warm welcome from Nando’s

careers day earlier in the term, where a range of employers and educators visited us and set up stands in the hall, to inform students about the kinds of opportunities available to them.

Thank you to all the companies involved:

We visited Nando’s in Exeter’s Princesshay as part of World of Work week, and our students were really impressed to learn about the company’s values. On arriving at the restaurant our students were given the VIP tour, to see everything from food delivery to getting the finished meal to the customer. Gary the store manager was really keen to meet our students and

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019

discuss creating BSL-friendly workplaces. He talked about the Nando’s ethos and values, and how they are involved in the community - from donating leftovers to local charities, to keeping bees on the roof of the restaurant! Student Tom said:

‘I liked learning about communication, and how Nando’s is a family with staff from different countries all speaking different languages.’ 10

A very special Taekwondo grading We’re really proud of Winston, Lily, Heidi and Jonathan, who all recently passed their first Tae Kwon Do grading!

All four of our students have been taking part in weekly Tae Kwon Do classes with Learning Leader Fran, who is a black belt.

Tae Kwon Do (also known as Taekwondo) is an art of self defense that originated in Korea. It is recognised as one of the oldest forms of martial arts in the world, reaching back over 2,000 years. The name translates to Tae (foot), Kwon (hand), and Do (art).

They were graded by Grand Master Dew, who traveled down from Somerset to the Academy especially. Each student had to demonstrate 8 different moves, including punches, kicks and press ups.

Fran said: ‘Jonathan has tried especially hard, even practicing at break times. All of the students have done so well, I’m really proud of them.’

A big thank you to Grand Master Dew, and Ben Cheriton of TAGB for giving their time.

They were then presented with a special certificate to show they had passed, as well as their white belt with a yellow stripe! Jonathan was also presented with a extraspecial award for his dedication to training.

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Our New Deaf Academy update In a year of wonderful steps forward in education and care, 2019 saw the Academy taking great strides towards our new home in Exmouth. Since the ground-breaking ceremony in March when many of our young people, headed up by college student Lily, put a spade in the ground to mark the start of the build, the project has been going very smoothly. Just before the end of the summer school student Nissi went to be filmed by ITV having a look around the new site, and the transformation was amazing. Nissi was able to walk upstairs in the new Academy, look down into the central atrium, and get a feel for the wide corridors and the large classrooms. Meanwhile, fundraising has been going very well with almost £900,000 being donated to the fundraising appeal from grants and foundations. The biggest gift this year of £395,000 was presented to students at the Leavers assembly in July by Bob Spencer of the Clare Milne Trust. However, we do still have money to raise to complete the project and we’ve been delighted with the support staff and students have given to fundraising including school student Oliver doing a skydive and Care Assistant Naomi completing the the Three Peaks Challenge. The end of the year also saw almost 200 people take part in the Exmouth Colour Bomb event which has raised £6500 and counting. We look forward to keeping you posted on progress until we finally open the doors on the 20th of April 2020. However, we need your help to get over the line. Please go to and find out how you can be part of the team who make this happen.

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Fundraising Update Thank you to all of the amazing supporters who have helped us towards our fundraising goal for the New Deaf Academy this term. Here are some of their stories:

Ottertots Nursery Pupils and staff at Ottertots’ Hulham Road site spent a week dressing up in different costumes each day, including onesies, princesses and pyjamas. The children also took part in some sponsored silence activities and staff spent time wearing ear defenders, with the children using basic BSL to communicate with them. In total they raised over £1000! A huge thank you to all of the staff, pupils and parents who participated.

Naomi Froud Academy care worker Naomi took on the mighty Three Peaks Challenge, climbing the highest peaks in England, Scotland and Wales - Scaffell Pike, Ben Nevis and Snowdon - in just 24 hours! Naomi has smashed her fundraising target of £1000 having currently raised £1,384 for us. You can donate to Naomi’s Just Giving page at

Oliver Elliot-Chorley In May, school student Oliver took on an amazing challenge - a 10,000 foot skydive to raise money for the new build appeal, in honour of his 16th birthday. Oliver was incredibly brave, and not only did he complete the jump, he also raised £130 for the Academy in the process! If you’re feeling as brave as Elliot, head to to sign up for a jump!

Caitlin, Michael, Hugh & Winston Academy students Caitlin, Michael, Hugh and Winston raised money for us at Haldon Racecourse car boot sale this term, selling donated items to the general public as well as collecting cash donations. In total they raised £128.18! Well done, and a big thank you to care staff Zoe, Stephen, Hannah and Sophie for supporting them.

You...? Could you make a difference to Deaf young lives, and help us raise the remainder of our £250,000 goal? There are so many different ways you can support us, from Cake and a Cuppa bake sales, to firewalking, to holding a special event with a local club or organisation. Head to to find out how you could help. Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


The Santa Sizzle is back! December may seem a long way off but it will be with us sooner than you think... and so will 2019’s Santa Sizzle firewalk! Last year’s Santa Sizzle on Exmouth Strand was a successful and fun evening, raising lots of money for our New Academy Appeal, including lots of generous donations from the Exmouth public on the night. This year’s firewalk will be even bigger, with more firewalkers and more entertainment for spectators. A firewalk may sound scary, but it is perfectly safe; all of our charity fire walkers will be trained, motivated and confident to walk across hot coals with a temperature of over 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s not a trick - the fire is very real. The embers will be glowing red hot and firewalkers will have

bare feet that have not been treated in any way. The sensation of fire walking is described by some as walking on eggshells, or by others as walking on hot sand; each walker has his or her own experience. Walkers have not been known to experience pain - last year all of our firewalkers crossed the coals several times...

Kay, one of our firewalkers who took part in last year’s event, said: ‘I highly recommend the Santa Sizzle - it was great fun!’ Book your place on the 2019 firewalk now and start collecting that sponsorship money! If you require a BSL interpreter on the day please email us to let us know: fundraising@

Head to

to find out more and book!

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Another epic journey with the Island Trust Second Mate Sally from the Trust who taught them the all important skills they learned, including hoisting sails, navigating and how to crew a sailboat. The group also spent time fishing, sea swimming, had a beach BBQ and undertook a #2minutebeachclean. Leah said:

Every year our students sail away on a voyage with Plymouth charity the Island Trust, who enable young people of all backgrounds to experience the joys and challenges of sailing on their fleet of traditional sailboats. This summer, ten students boarded the Johanna Lucretia for a 5-day voyage along the Devon coast: Molly, Leah, James, Tom, William, Matthew, Rhys, Aiden, Hugh and Winston made up this year’s crew, along with care worker Darren and CSW Ben, and Captain Craig, First Mate Dan and

Exeter Deaf Academy

‘I had a good time - a fantastic experience. My favourite part was pulling the ropes for making sail and also launching the dingy.’ CSW Ben said: ‘We want to say a massive thank you to Captain Craig, First Mate Dan and Second Mate Sally for an amazing sailing adventure - they couldn’t have done more! The students loved them all for sharing their passion for sailing and embracing BSL to teach them the ropes. All the students have learned new skills and developed themselves this week, working together toward a common goal. They have done themselves and the Academy proud!’

Issue 9 - summer 2019


PSHE Day drugs and alcohol In May we held another of our termly PSHE days - this term the theme was Drugs and Alcohol. Our students spent the day learning about risks of substance abuse, how to deal with peer pressure, and how to keep themselves safe and healthy. Some students took a trip to the local hospital for a tour and talk, others had a go at walking in drunk goggles, plus there were art workshops, discussion groups and social break times where students and staff

mingled and chatted, and enjoyed delicious snacks. The students especially enjoyed trying to move around in the drunk goggles, but also appreciated the lesson on how alcohol can impair our senses, judgement and spatial awareness. PSHE lead Jo Fison said: ‘A highlight of the day was watching the students so engaged and focused on their learning, and asking lots of questions in sessions. It was a great day.’

Well done to all the staff who worked so hard, and all the students for their focus and enthusiasm! And of course a big thank you to Aiden for his fabulous photographs of the day.

We are grateful to Devon and Cornwall police, who loaned us the goggles and also provided support and advice.

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


O U R P H OT O A L B U M Thank you to all the staff, volunteers and students who have contributed photos this year - here’s a snapshot of last term! Exeter College Awards

Teaching BSL for Deaf Awareness Week

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Fundraising for our new Academy

We love keeping active!

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Celebrating birthdays

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Summer fun!

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Be social with us!

Visit our social media channels below to keep up to date with everything that’s going on at the Deaf Academy, including regular updates on our New Deaf Academy Appeal.




Exeter Deaf Academy exeterdeafacademy


And finally...

Wishing you all a lovely summer break! We look forward to welcoming everyone back for the new school year.. Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Dates for your calendar World of Country Life Sci-Fi Day Sunday 18 August, Sandy Bay, Exmouth

Southern Troopers – the fantastic fundraising cosplay group - will be at World of Country Life from 10am to 3pm raising money for our new Academy, posing for photos with visitors and generally joining in with the fun! There will also be all the usual summer holiday activities such as goat walking, bottle feeding and birds of prey flying displays. Visit to find out more.

Santa Sizzle Firewalk 2019 7 December 2019, Exmouth Strand, £15 Our Santa Sizzle fundraising firewalk, hosted by UK Firewalk, is back! Are you brave enough to put your hottest, or coldest, foot first, conquer your mind and step across the 5 metres of hot coals? Take on the firewalk today and help support young Deaf lives. It’s the festive challenge of a lifetime!

Jurassic Coast Challenge and Mount Toubkal Trek

Book your place at

15-17 May | 8-12 July 2020 There’s nothing like the feeling of taking on and completing an epic challenge, especially when you’re raising money to change Deaf young lives at the same time. Along with Discover Adventure, we’re offering two incredible challenges to get your adrenaline going – take on the beautiful but demanding Jurassic Coast trek, or conquer the mighty Mount Toubkal in Morocco!

Find more events at eventlist

Find out more at If you’d like to get in contact about any of the articles in this newsletter please email

Editor: Nicki, Marketing Manager Thank you to all staff and students who contributed stories and photographs Cover graphics by / Freepik | | 01392 267023 | Charity number: 1124523 Exeter Deaf Academy is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young adults and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment

Exeter Deaf Academy

Issue 9 - summer 2019


Profile for Exeter Deaf Academy

Exeter Deaf Academy Newsletter - Summer 2019  

Exeter Deaf Academy Newsletter - Summer 2019