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News

January 2024
Braunton Academy's MacBeth Makes News

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Braunton Academy are putting on a unique performance of MacBeth next month and below are two links to news articles regarding it.  

Devon Live article

North Devon Gazette article

Performances take place in the Isaac Hall on 7th, 8th and 9th February 2024.  Tickets are available to buy on Parentmail or at the Academy Reception.  

January 2024
Cross Country Success

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Massive congratulations to Freya, Amber and Carys who competed for Devon Schools over the weekend at the South West Schools' Cross Country Championships in Yeovil. 🏃‍♀️

Carys came 5th (1st Devon).
Freya 24th (3rd Devon)
Amber 54th (8th Devon).

Freya and Amber have now qualified for the English Schools' Cross Country Championships. 

As Carys competes in the Minor (Y7) age group, she is too young this year to go to the English Schools' Championships and will get another chance next year to follow in her older sisters footsteps.

25th and 26th January 2024
Oxford University and Bletchley Park Trips

On January 25th and 26th 40 year 9 students took part in a trip to Oxford University and Bletchley Park in order to widen their horizons and stimulate their minds.

 

We arrived at Oxford University, Exeter College at 10.30am on Thursday and we were shown around the college with its splendid old buildings and history before taking part in a Critical Thinking workshop. The students looked in detail at the most famous Shakespeare stage direction from A Winter's Tail, Act 3, Scene 3 when Antigonus is chased off stage by a bear. The students had to think at a very high level to formulate ideas and discuss this scene's meaning.

 

Following lunch, we then walked to the Oxford University Maths Institute where we were met by Professor James Munro, an amazing character who enthralled the students with his wit and obvious love of Mathematics. The students took part in a lecture on the Product Rule for Counting and how a knowledge of systems and patterns enables mathematicians to solve tricky problems. 

 

At the end of the afternoon, we walked to the Oxford University Natural History Museum where the students were free to wander and look at the huge number of fascinating exhibits in the collection.

 

Following an overnight stay in a hotel and, for a lot of us, a crepe breakfast we again boarded the coach for an hours journey to Bletchley Park, the home of the British Codebreakers in World War 2.  We had 5 hours there and during this time students took park in an hours workshop on codebreaking, Ciphers and saw up close and in use an original German Enigma machine. The students also had an hours guided tour of some of the park focused on the D Day landings with a really interesting cinematic presentation with numerous screens.  We explored the park, saw where Alan Turing worked along with his team and visited the shop before leaving at 2.30pm arriving back in Braunton at 8pm.

 

I will be running this trip next year for selected year 9 students with emails being sent in September.

 

Mr England

24th January 2024
Eco Group Litter Picking

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Today Braunton Academy Eco-guerillas kindly volunteered to take part in a litter pick around Braunton.  This is the Academy's response to Plastic Free North Devon's Cleanse and Clean Campaign.  The litter pick took place at the bowl, along the Tarka Trail and the pump track.  

Well done to all those who volunteered.  Please see below some of the obscure objects we found along the way.  

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18th January 2024
Tree Planting by Eco Group

13 lovely Eco Club members braved the chilly weather to plant 70 more saplings at Yeo Valley Community Woods.  This is the second time we have planted trees here and it was lovely to revisit last year's trees and see how they have grown.  The plan is to lock 3,000 tonnes of carbon into this woodland for the next 100 years.  Well done everyone for their enthusiasm and willingness to learn. 

 

Mrs Moy

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5th January 2024
Football Scholarship

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Congratulations to one of our year 10 students, Leo, who has been offered a scholarship with Plymouth Argyle.  

Good luck Leo!

December 2023
Snowsports Trip Pila, Italy

We had an amazing week over the Christmas holidays.  Snow was plentiful, the slops were quiet, so no queuing at lifts, and the sun was out all week!  This year we had 46 students; half snowboarding and half skiing.  Ability ranged from advanced to beginner with 7 groups.  What is great at Pila is the ability to regularly see all the different groups progressing throughout the day due to 'The Bowl' area being the ski area where the beginners and advanced crossover.  

Evenings were spent at a pizza restaurant, visiting the beautiful town of Pila (which boasts the largest Roman ruins outside of Rome), karaoke and bowling at the local games arcade.  A big thank you to all the students and staff for making the week a fun and memorable time.  

We have booked Pila again for next year, departing on the 28th December 2024.  All the information and details are on ParentMail.  As we are restricted to 46 students, please book a place by completing the form and paying the deposit as soon as possible.

Mrs Craig

15th December 2023
The Expansion Progress

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We are pleased to report that the build is still on time with 100% of the steel frame completed and the flat roof added.  The ground floor, first floor structures and both sets of concrete stairs have been installed. The block works and brick works in the Quad is almost completed and will be ready for students to use in their social times very soon.

 

We are looking forward to planting up the bedding areas, including an herb garden for the Food Technology department. 

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13th December 2023
Winter Concert

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This week we hosted the annual Winter Concert in Isaac Hall.  This year we were delighted to welcome the Southmead Primary Choir who sang three of their own songs before joining in with the Academy students for the first-half finale.  May I take this opportunity to thank

Ms Simpson for her hard work with the choir and helping students in our community take those all-important steps into their first musical performances.  It's wonderful for these younger children to get used to the stage and we hope they will become regular performers in years to come.  

There was a fantastic array of talent on display from all year groups and we are all very proud of them. 

 

Special mention to our year 11 students in what was their final Christmas Concert: Finley, Anna, Holly, Lily, Lola, Reuben and Amber.  All of these students have taken part in many concerts over the years, and we wish them all the best.  We know as musicians they leave Braunton Academy with something magical and special that will stay with them all their lives.  

Mr Street

13th December 2023
Charity Cake Sale

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Well done to Marnie and 8MS who organised a charity cake sale today in aid of Shelter.  They raised an amazing £110!!  

Thank you to everybody who donated cakes.  

11th December 2023
North Devon Schools' Rugby Cup Winners

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🏆 HUGE Congratulations to our Year 9 Rugby team who won the North Devon Schools' Rugby Cup tonight against West Buckland School.

 

They now qualify for the Devon Rugby Cup as North Devon winners.

In a pulsating final, held at Bideford Rugby Football Club, the score line ended 12-12 at full time in a highly competitive and even contest. 

 

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With the game tied and both tries and conversions even, Braunton Academy won the final after scoring the first try in the game, as per RFU rules. 

 

Tyler was announced player of the match, but every single player played their part, making their coach and Head of Year, Mr Ovey, very happy.  He had this to say, "One of the highest quality matches I have seen at school level". 

 

Well done to all the players and coaches on a fantastic win. Thank you to the referee and commiserations to West Buckland Sport who were absolutely fantastic. Thank you also to Mr Cooke from Great Torrington School for organising the event.

7th December 2023
Christmas Dinner Day

It has long been the tradition that the whole school sits down to Christmas Dinner.  This was lost for a few years due to the pandemic but has been successfully resurrected this year.  There are no many occasions in the year when we get to do something as a whole school, and especially in the darks days of December, so it was lovely to have an event where the school could come together as a whole community.  It is a bit of a logistical nightmare to get it all organised, but the catering team, led by Mrs Nash and the support staff, did an amazing job to organise everything.  The students and staff really enjoyed the event.  

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December 2023
Parliamentary Petition

As a school community we recently undertook an exercise in democracy to find out which new law our students would most like to see introduced by Parliament.  All tutor groups put forward a proposed law and then four of their ideas were shortlisted and turned into ballot papers.  The whole school was invited to vote for their favourite and this has now been turned into a live petition on the Parliamentary Petitions webpage.

 

Our students decided that a new law surrounding vapes was needed - specifically one aimed at reducing the marketing of vapes to children - and so the proposed law is: 'Ban all flavoured vapes'.

 

This is the link Ban all flavoured vapes - Petitions (parliament.uk) and it would be amazing if lots of you could sign it and share it on behalf of our young people.  10,000 signatures means we will get a formal response from government and 100,000 signatures will mean it has to be debated in parliament.  Please help if you can - it only takes seconds to sign.  Please also ask the young people in your household to sign it too as they have not had chance to do so in school.

November 2023
Climate Change Theatre Action Performances

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Students from the year 10 GCSE Drama class performed as part of the worldwide Climate Change Theatre Action Festival.  This event was part of an international programme of events with actors and artists from Alaska to New Zealand performing the same scripts as Braunton Academy students to raise awareness of the effects of Climate Change.  

Students shared the stage with professional actors from Multi Story Theatre Company and Theatre Workhouse to perform scripts from

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several international playwrights.  

The evening was a great success enjoyed by a well-attended audience.  The students performed with professionalism and confidence alongside more experience actors and were a credit to themselves and the Expressive Arts Department.  

Students also performed at Bridge Chambers in Barnstaple with the same company of actors and this audience was attended by local environmental stakeholders, councillors and the Chair of the Arts Council for Devon.  Again, the students were very accomplished and professional in their performances and the audience thoroughly enjoyed a thought-provoking evening about climate change and our response to it living in North Devon.  Mr Carroll would like to thank Beaford Arts for their significant support of both events and for making it possible for Braunton Academy students to participate in such valuable learning experiences.  

Autumn 2023
MESME Maths Circles Programme

We are delighted to announce that four students from year 7 have gained places on the prestigious MESME Maths Cirlces Programme with Exeter Maths School.  MESME's charitable purpose is to support high-attaining students to achieve mathematical excellence by participating in MESME Maths Circles, so that they go on to have a greater and richer range of future personal, employment and economic choices.  

In a MESME Maths Circle, a small group of students come together regularly with an experienced, knowledgeable mentor to grapple with intriguing questions, to discover and explore exciting ideas, and to learn to think like advanced mathematicians.  Maths Circles develop students' mathematical reasoning and expand their mathematical curiosity, as well as refining their technical knowledge and skills.  Students follow a precisely sequenced and carefully structured curriculum.  

These students will spend the next five years working online and face-to-face with teachers at the school to develop their maths to a very high level with a view to perhaps moving into A level in the future.

Well done to Maya, Harry, Rosie and Judah.  

November 2023
North Devon Schools' Climbing Competition

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Please congratulate all climbers (17 in all) who represented the Academy at the annual North Devon Schools' Climbing Competition. They were runners up in a highly competitive event.

 

Daisy placed 1st which is fantastic.  Well done Daisy!!!

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December 2023
Chess Competition

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Following 5 weeks of hard fought competition, we are down to the final of the in-school Chess Competition which will take place on Friday 8th December.

 

Finalists are:-

 

Ethan (year 9)  V Judah (year 7)

 

3rd place playoff:-

 

Brooke (year 11)   V  Louis (year 9)

 

In more chess news, congratulations to Rosie and Clodagh, two promising young chess players, that have been awarded the position of Captain and Vice Captain of Key Stage 2 chess. It is their job to assist with the club and encourage chess to be played across years 7 to 9. 

 

If you see any of the players, or our new Captains of Chess, please congratulate them and offer encouragement to the finalists.

November 2023
Exeter Chiefs DPP Academy

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Please congratulate Joel and Harvey who were put forward by their rugby coaches at Barnstaple Rugby Club to attend 2 training evenings as part of a selection process for the Exeter Chiefs DPP academy.  

 

Joel and Harvey were both successful in this process and will now continue building on their rugby skills at the Exeter Chiefs development academy.

21st November 2023
North Devon Schools' Football Champions - Year 11s

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Congratulations to  the year 11 football team who are, once again, North Devon Schools Champions!

 

Last night they represented Braunton Academy for the final time as a team.  They played a very spirited Chulmleigh side and came out with a well deserved 6-2 win. A tremendous performance and result. 

 

It's been a great 5 years for them with many victories, medals and trophies.

21st November 2023
North Devon Schools' Football Champions - Year 8s

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Congratulations to the year 8 boys' football team who were crowned North Devon Schools' Champions this evening. 

 

They competed in the North Devon Schools' Football Finals against Pilton Community College, putting in a tremendous performance to win 3-0. 

 

This team have now won this competition 2 years in a row and maintain their 100% record, so far winning 11 out of 11 matches. They now turn their attention to the 2nd round of the Devon County Cup in a few weeks' time against Teign School.

21st November 2023
Eco Guerrillas Tree Plant

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Today the magnificent Eco Guerrillas planted 10 silver birch, 10 rowan, 10 wild cherry and 8 hawthorn saplings in order to increase biodiversity on the Academy site.  They were planted on the empty bank behind the athletics track.  The next idea is to get some wildflower patches planted up.  

Thank you to the Woodland Trust and Andy, one of our Governors, for providing the saplings.  

Well done everyone involved.  

November 2023
North Devon Cross Country Championships

Congratulations to 24 of our students who have been selected to represent North Devon Schools in Cross Country. 

 

To be selected, students have to finish in the top 16 of all runners in their age category at the North Devon Cross Country Championships held on Tuesday 7th November at West Buckland School. They now have all earned the right to represent North Devon at the Devon Schools' Cross Country Championships on Saturday 20th January 2024.

15th November 2023
Advertising Unlocked

Students studying Enterprise and Marketing were able to visit Advertising agency Bray Leino in Filleigh.  Students were able to explore a range of job areas in the company including Creative Design, Film Making, AI and Client Services.  Students had a fantastic day and now have a greater idea about careers in the advertising industry.

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10th November 2023
Armistice Day

Several of our students joined in the Armistice Day ceremony in the village today.  As always, this was a very moving ceremony for everybody remembering and honouring our armed forces personnel who have lost their lives in conflicts.  

Our student, Charlie, played the Last Post prior to the two minutes' silence.  

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7th November 2023
Norway Calling......

Year 7R Geography had the pleasure of a video teams meeting today with our new partner school in Norway.  The school is based in Overbygd in Northern Norway within the Arctic Circle.  The partnership has been set up through the Humanities Department, working with the marine base in Chivenor, who undertake training regularly within the district surrounding Overbygd.  7R in their lessons have been looking at the geography of Norway and the Arctic Circle and have sent and received work about what the world looks like outside their window in North Devon and Norway!  From that they have developed questions they wanted to ask the Norwegian school students who also wanted to ask 7R questions too.  The questions ranged from topics such as the weather, school, uniforms, lessons, recreation and environments. 

 

It was a really exciting start to the partnership and more video calls are planned for the future.  Watch this space....!

5th November 2023
Exeter Chiefs

On Sunday 5th November a group of our students went to Sandy Park, Exeter, to watch Exeter Chiefs against Bristol Bears.

It was a tense match with the Chiefs winning 29 - 20.  

The day included a tour of the playing facilities, coaching before the game, and a pitch walk at half time.

3rd November 2023
Design & Technology Trip

Despite much pleading by the class, this was not a trip to the golden arches or the chicken emporium, but in fact to visit two thriving and long-established businesses that are right on our doorstep.

 

Out first stop was to see the corrugated card creations of Atlas Packaging.  They create card packaging for many of the household brands you will be familiar with, as well as smaller, more unusual packaging requests.  They took us through the whole design concept stage, surface design development and finally production, via their impressive factory floor. For health and safety reasons we were not allowed onto the factory floor, but we got a real sense of the scale of their operations as we could view it from the design offices above.  We were given the history of their business, and what they produce now with a real focus on the sustainability of the materials they use, by the head of the business Jason, before being shown the design and production stages by two of his senior staff. 

 

Our next stop was just around the corner at North Devon Metal Craft. A long-established, but much smaller scale business, that embraces the new and old ways of engineering.  They are the go-to people for handmade car body parts for brands such as Jaguar, Bentley, Triumph, Porsche and Cobra.  Their workshop is a feast for anyone who is interested in engineering, stuffed full with car bodies at various stages of build, and the very traditional equipment they still use to get such a high-end finish. What they make is sent all over the world to car enthusiasts. Students were particularly fascinated by the English Wheel, used to form sheet materials into incredible curves for the very classic cars they build and restore. Part of their initial concept work is done using CAD so it was great for students to see how the old and new ways can be equally productive in today's very competitive markets.

 

We would all like to thank both companies for giving up precious work time to show us around their businesses.  It is invaluable for students to see design and technology in action as it really brings the theory we study in school to life. It also shows them there are many opportunities in our local area that could lead to a very fulfilling career.

Miss Britton