National finalists for Lego Robotics and lots of challenge

Tomorrow’s Engineers reach national finals again

On Wednesday, the TA Robotics team participated in the South West regional final of the Tomorrow’s Engineers Lego Robotics challenge hosted at Renishaw, Gloucestershire. Over 500 schools are taking part in the competition with regional heats being held in over 25 locations in the UK.

The competition is split into 5 main categories: the speed challenge, the challenge mat, a group presentation, an unknown teamwork challenge and a robot design interview. The team blew away the competition in the speed challenge, with a winning time of 1.55s over 4m. This is currently the national record over 4m! Success continued in the challenge mat, with run 1 scoring 38/40 and run 2 scoring the maximum 40/40! This included a spectacular hill climb, as shown in the following video. The group presentation allowed the team to display their ideas to combat the issue of plastics in our oceans, leaving the judges extremely impressed by the fully automated Lego nurdle machine. This was followed by a strong showing in the teamwork challenge, where each student had a vital role in the production line of an RBG light. The students instantly identified the robot design interview as the area for improvement, with the team admitting that their answers didn’t do their robots justice!

With a total score of 145/160, TA Robotics won the South West Regional Heat of the competition and have been invited to represent the South West as one of only 40 schools to take part in the National Final on Friday 15th March at the Big Bang Science Fair in the Birmingham NEC!

This is a tremendous result and is a fair reflection of the determination, dedication and talent the team possess. They conducted themselves in the best possible manner, as recognised by the judges and organisers on the day. One judge even compared the team to an ‘F1 pitstop crew’!

The new homework books and knowledge organisers were given out this week. Years 9 and 10 are using homework books for the first time alongside their subject homework. The Study Centre has been packed this week with students completing their homework at lunchtime and after school.

Rest assured, we will be working tirelessly to hopefully bring home more silverware!

TA Robotics team:  Azize Isufi, Emily Mahoney-Billis, Kacy Fairhurst, Antonia Standen, Angus Graham, Ollie Hill, Robin Pightling, James Scrimgeor, Will Harrison, Oliver Phillips


8.2.19 Enterprise Lego



LAMDA Masterclass for PAA

8.2.19 PAA

Our Performing Arts Academy was fortunate enough this week to have the opportunity to take part in a masterclass delivered by LAMDA (London Academy of Musical and Dramatic Arts) practitioner, Anthony Chamberlain. Anthony, who is one of only a select few teachers to be accredited by LAMDA, had the students hanging from his every word as he took them through a series of activities all inspired by Baz Luhrmann’s Everybody’s Free To Wear Sunscreen. This was the stimulus that inspired the whole workshop. Anthony told me that he was extremely impressed with the professionalism showed by our students and also with the quality of their outcomes. Anthony will be working with the PAA offering 1-2-1 LAMDA lessons in Acting & Musical theatre beginning after half term. We are delighted to welcome him to the PAA team!


Centre of Excellence for Ben

8.2.19 Music

Ben German in Year 7  has successfully passed his audition for a place at the South Devon Music centre of excellence.  Ben auditioned a grade 8 piece on the drums to a panel including conductor Colin Bellworthy, who were clearly blown away by his immense talent and skill. The centre of excellence, rehearse every fortnight and are considered to be the elite young musicians from the South West. We are immensely proud of Ben’s achievement and look forward to hearing him in his new ensemble.


UKMT Maths Challenge

8.2.19 UKMT Challenge1 8.2.19 UKMT Challenge2

This week some of our best Mathematicians in years 9-11 took part in the UKMT Intermediate Maths Challenge. This is a national competition that always pushes the students, really stretching their mathematical thinking. I know the Maths team are looking forward to getting the results in a few weeks time and hopefully celebrating some great results and being able to give out some Bronze, Silver and Gold certificates. Well done to all the students who took part.



8.2.19 Science Y7

Above are 7Q4 reacting metals with oxygen from the air as part of their Science topic.


Lexia Prize Raffle

8.2.19 Lexia Tyler Bayliss

This week we awarded the Lexia prize raffle winner for cycle 2. As part of our literacy intervention program, the students each have a weekly Lexia target to achieve 10 bars each a week, by working through the various units of the Lexia program, building their knowledge and understanding as they go. Students who manage to achieve their weekly target are entered into the prize raffle which is drawn each cycle.

The winners for this cycle are Emily Harris (year 8) and Tyler Bayliss (year 7) who is pictured with his prize.


Team TA Sports Roundup

A frustrating week on the sporting front this week, particularly in terms of football. Of the 9 matches that were scheduled for the week only 2 actually took place in the correct format, the other 7 were either cancelled altogether or teams arrived with fewer players than required to play a full game.  It is frustrating as the students look forward to these games, it does however mean that 4 out of 5 of our teams have made it through to the next round of the South Devon Cup, albeit in a manner that does not do anyone any favours. There have been other competitions taking place students took part in the Devon Table Tennis and Devon Badminton Championships and there was Central Venue Netball for our Year 7 players so all was not lost.


Devon Table Tennis

8.2.19 T Tennis

On Wednesday of this week, 10 of our table tennis players took part in the Devon Table Tennis Individual Championships. This is a very different event to the team championships that we were so successful in back in November.  There are a lot more entries and the standard is very high. When we first entered these championships 3 years ago we had very little success and players struggled to win any of the games they played in.  To demonstrate just how far the Table Tennis programme has come in those 3 years, our players this time won more games in their pool stages than ever before and in the games where they did not win they challenged some excellent players all the way. An example of this was Year 13 student, Kamil Sniergoki, who came close to beating the eventual winner in the Under 19s competition.  Kamil really raised his game and had the player on the rails during the match.

We had three of our Under 13 players make it through to the knock out stages of their competition, William Howard, Bobby Western and William Bevan.  They all played extremely well all day.  William unfortunately came up against the eventual winner of this competition who also won the event last year, evidence on how far William has come in just 5 months was demonstrated by the fact that he made it this far; he is one to watch out for in the future. Will Bevan won his quarter final match with ease and found himself up against the very same player that William Howard had played in the last round. This semi final was a fantastic advert for school Table Tennis.  William clearly know he was up against it as the other boy is well known in the area and ranked Nationally.  William played amazingly well and challenged him all the way, he eventually lost 3-1 in sets but in all sets, he pushed him all the way.  He clearly had the player rattled and most games finished 12-10, next year maybe! William is an excellent example of how hard work and the correct attitude pay off, to see his development since arriving at the school last year has been amazing and an inspiration to all.

Players that took part were: Kamil Sniegocki, Mitosz Aleksander, Igor Sniegocki, Nick Turner, William Bevan, Josh Thompson, Harley Sneap, Bobby Western, William Howard and Kai Fowler.


Devon Badminton Championships

8.2.19 Bad 18.2.19 Bad 2

This week saw our KS3 and KS4 boys Badminton team represent Torbay in the Devon Badminton Championships, held at Paignton Academy. Despite little training and the introduction of many new players, especially to the KS3 team, both teams aquitted themselves extremely well and played with their usual positive attitude , enjoyment and a ” never giving up ” attitude. Our KS4 team, led by stalwart Matty Leighton, Jack Manley, Charlie Barnes, Elias Rawles and Spencer Artz knew that a tough day lay ahead. Many county players , in the Year above, were in their rounds, yet they not only won against Clyst Vale, but they actually challenged all of the tougher opponents  finally coming in as the 7th ranked team in Devon.

Our KS3 team led by Ellis Knowles had 4 players who had never played in a Badminton tournament before, Ryan Johns Kuadio, Miles Hindom, Tom Brown and Archie Hodgson Hunt. They won their first 4 games with some ease, settling in nicely. The last 3 games were tough competitors, with an eye on the bronze medal, the boys knew they had to beat one of the schools. Unfortunately, they lost outright to the eventual champions, but only narrowly lost 2-3 to the remaining 2 schools. It was so close, yet 4th place in Devon on their first outing is something to be proud of.

Well Done to all the boys who were an absolute credit to the school and PE dept. A great Day.



The Y8 football team progressed into the next round of the South Devon Cup with a comfortable 8-3 win against Paignton with goals from Harley Sneap 2, Finley Wood 2, Jack Howlett, William Hall, Charlie Tout and Kye Graham. MOM – Jack Howlett




Chayden Talbot in Year 7, took part in the Devon Championships in Exeter on Sunday.  He did exceptionally well gaining 1st place on the high bar and 3rd place overall.  His team were 1st place under 13s.  This is an excellent achievement, well done, Chayden



6th Form Football Academy

This video has been produced by our Director of Football, Mr Hogg, to advertise our 6th Form girls and boys football programs.  In the video you can see some of the incredible highlights from our First Team this year.




Aching Legs

8.2.19 JEM18.2.19 JEM3
On Sunday Mr Mellitt ran the London Winter Run which is a 10 kilometre course starting in Trafalgar Square and finishing in Whitehall near Downing Street. There were over 18,000 runners of all ages and abilities which made it a really exciting occasion.  Mr Mellitt came in at 5,527th place (out of 18,506 runners) with a personal best time of 1 hour and 1 minute. He claims that the 5,526 runners who beat him were all much younger than he is – aren’t we all Mr Mellitt, aren’t we all…!


Students of the Week

8.2.19 SOTW

Students of the week with me this week are: Elizabeth Finch, Harvey Kendall, Gareth Mufford, Brooke Cheesmond, Jeb Whatley, Tiegan Ford, Sophie Rick


Principal Certificates

8.2.19 Bronze 18.2.19 Bronze - 2


8.2.19 Bronze 3

Bronze : (not in order) Monica Mitula, Lily Unsworth, Harrison Stevens, Ed Fogarty, Seren Williamson, Joel Copping, Charlie Stevens, Madison Lovegrove, Vincent Poynton, Kyle Spence, Alan Kumeiga, Crobyn Gardner, Lauren Wills, Milla Schwarz, Oliver Waring, Kezia Stanley, Hannah Moxhay, Katie Bowyer, Ewan Zaple-Contreras, Alexis Vowles, Dimitar Dinev, Indi Johnson,  Jack Thorpe, Kimberley Taylor, Kayleigh Ullah, Archie Hodgson-Hunt, Leah Chappell, Tallulah Robson, Lucy Sullivan, Jensen Bond, Antonia Standen, Emily Johns, Ethan Hewett, Tilly Skeffington, Will Flood, Jack Brownhill, Anthony Brooking, Paige Godwin, Mea White, Elie Reshad 


 8.2.19 Silver

Silver : (not in order)  Melissa Piper, Nikodem Piasecki, Jeb Whatley, Mia Denby,  Lila-May Harrington, Sebastian Grute, Rae Makinson, Madison Hole, Taylor Ford, Jasmine Winterton


8.2.19 Gold

Gold: Penny Richards,  Ellie Mae Mitchell, Kai Alexander 


House Stars of the Week

Year 7

Brunel – Tyler Bayliss

Christie – Archie Cox

Darwin – Megan Dorling

Fawcett –

Harrison – Sam Kelly

Kitson – Milly Watt

Nearne – Max Peplow

Pengelly – Jamie Nunn


Year 8

Brunel – Charlotte Bush

Christie – Bradley Young

Darwin – William Dowell

Fawcett – Bethany Coker

Harrison – Milly Treleaven

Kitson – Oakley Manning

Nearne – Max Gamble

Pengelly – Frankie Cuss


Year 9

Brunel –

Christie – Kieron Hill

Darwin – Jenson Bond

Fawcett – Lucie Gapper.

Harrison – Mia Sharman

Kitson – Amy Langley

Nearne –

Pengelly – Jude Rockey



Cancer Research Donation

Year 13 student Amber is raising money for Cancer Research by “Walking all over Cancer”.  If you would like to sponsor her, please click on link below which will take you to the  Cancer Research UK on the page. Thank you.

Building update


8.2.19 Theatre

The concrete planks that will form the ground floor have been laid this week.


Dining Room

8.2.19 Dining

It is two weeks away from being handed over to us and it has started to look more like a completed space.  The walls have been painted and the floor is currently being tiled.


National School Nurse consultation

We have been asked to circulate the following message from Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust:

Public Health England have asked the British Youth Council (BYC) to carry out a School Nurse Consultation 2019, to engage young people to find out their views about school nursing.  We would really value feedback from the young people in Torbay and would be grateful if as many of your students as possible could complete the survey. The survey closes on 28th February.

The link to the consultation is: