Teign School

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Teign School
Established 2011
Type Secondary Academy
Trust Templer Academy Schools Trust
Headteacher Mr Mark Woodlock
Location Chudleigh Road
Newton Abbot
TQ12 3JG
Coordinates: 50°33′14″N 3°36′09″W / 50.55391°N 3.60244°W / 50.55391; -3.60244
DfE number 878/5402
DfE URN 136494 Tables
Ofsted Reports Pre-academy reports
Capacity 1,353 (Data from January 2015)
Students 1,180 (Data from January 2015)
Gender Mixed
Ages 11–18
Houses Eagles, Sharks, Tigers, Wolves
Website teignacademy.co.uk

Teign School is an 11–18 academy school located in Kingsteignton, a small town to the north of Newton Abbot. The original 1936 building has been expanded upon substantially and numerous additional buildings have been constructed within the grounds. The school has entry level at Year 7.[1] The school also has a sixth form centre. In 2004 it was awarded specialist Science status[2] by the Specialist Schools Trust.


The student body is divided into four houses, represented by different animal names. Each student is sorted into one of these houses upon entry into the school. The four houses are named after four animals and are:

  • Sharks
  • Wolves
  • Eagles
  • Tigers

The houses compete against each other in academic and sporting disciplines, each contributing towards house points. The house with maximum points is declared the House of the Year and is presented with medals for everyone inside the winning house.[3]


The school has eight blocks, each managing different subjects.

  • A Block offers Science on the lower floors and Maths on the upper floors. There are five science labs in this block.
  • S Block (also known as T (technology) Block) has science and technology rooms downstairs with science labs, including A-Level labs for use by Sixth Formers. A 'woodwork', or resistant material room, is accompanied by two cooking rooms located downstairs. Upstairs sees three computer rooms, more science labs and a graphics room.
  • L Block is used for the Sixth Form students, containing some Sixth Form teaching rooms (also used for GCSE Psychology) and teaching rooms for BCV (Beliefs, Values and Citizenship (commonly known as Religious Studies)) There is a 'Business Studies ICT room' located upstairs, as well as the ICT Office and the school's Library. L Block is the eldest block in the school and also sees the recently opened Sixth Form Study Centre which features a special computer room and work area for Sixth Formers, and an office for Sixth Form year leaders, administrator and department leader.
  • K Block has English rooms downstairs with Media and Art upstairs. This block also features the 'Canteign', the school's canteen, which opens before school and during lunchtime and breaktime. 'K-Hall' is sometimes used for physical education, but this is more frequently taught and practised in the school's sports centre. K Block also has an extended part of the building known as 'OC'. This extension is home of the classroom OC1 and rooms OC2 and OC3, home of the Inclusion Department.
  • J Block is home of the History and Geography departments. The majority of the History classrooms are downstairs and the majority of Geography classrooms are upstairs, although the History department office is situated on the first floor, whilst the Geography department office is situated on the ground floor. Also on the ground floor is the main reception, along with the headteacher's office and 'Year 8 Receptionist' desk (used by Year 8s, in which each day two different students spend a day off-timetable to experience being a receptionist).
  • The Drama and Music Block is home to Drama, Music and the Templer Theatre. The Templer Theatre is the location of drama lessons, assemblies and drama productions. The music rooms in the school have sound-proofed rooms within them, used by music teachers, who use the room to teach students instruments such as the drums, guitar, violin and keyboard.
  • D Block is the block of modern foreign languages. It is the only block not to have a lift. As well as ground floor classrooms, there is the department office and computer room. Within the department office there is also a small room, used for French and Spanish GCSE oral examinations. There are four classrooms upstairs, both used for French and Spanish teaching.
  • The Teign School Sports Centre is the most recently built building in the school. Built on part of the school's field, the sports centre is the home of two indoor male and female changing rooms and two outdoor male and female changing rooms. It also contains the physical education department office and a dance studio. The main hall in the block has 5 badminton courts and a full-sized basketball court within it. It is annually used for a whole school assembly in September, in which the headteacher welcomes new Year 7 students and each of them performs their House pledge. The gym, which is open to the public, is also used during school hours for the students. Students will change the sports they're doing in physical education lessons throughout terms and at the beginning of Key Stage 4, there is a choice of contact and non-contact sports groups. The contact sports group will do football and rugby, whilst the non-contact sports groups will do sports such as athletics and table tennis. All students will spend time in the gym during the academic year and all will have the opportunity to go swimming during their physical education lessons in Year 7 and 9. Unfortunately, as a consequence of the building's construction, the field's athletics track has been reduced from a full-sized 400m track to a 300m track.

Tuberculosis Outbreak[edit]

On March 25, 2015, the headteacher Mark Woodlock sent a letter to students and parents explaining that 'a student in Year 10 at Teign School has been diagnosed with Tuberculosis (TB).'[4] The headteacher informed parents and students that the school had contacted Public Health England and the relevant action would be taken to ensure students were safe.

The letter went on to explain that two former Teign School pupils (in Year 11 during the 2013/14 academic year) had also been infected and the school would be screening Year 10 and 12 pupils, along with teachers, to check that TB bacteria had not been spread.

The letter assured parents that the risk was low and Dr Sarah Harrison (deputy director at PHE in Devon, Cornwall and Somerset) said that the illness was 'difficult to catch'.[5] Despite this, 94 of the 300 pupils and staff came back with a positive result.[6]

It was announced on Friday 22 May that all Teign School students and staff would be screened after the result was 'higher than expected'. The students which are known to have the illness are being treated at Torbay Hospital.

Many students are currently undergoing treatment and are said to have a latent, non-infectious Tuberculosis which can be treated with a three to six-month course of antibiotics. Teign School are keen to reassure parents that the risk is low and the disease is treatable.

On 15 September 2015, Public Health England and the school's headteacher Mark Woodlock released information on the matter.

Mark Woodlock said the incident had caused a 'degree of anxiety', whilst Public Health England, especially Dr Sarah Harrison, have come under attack from parents and the media for not releasing official figures of cases. The letter published says 'nearly 200' cases with 'less than 10' of these becoming active Tuberculosis. These figures came under heavy criticism from parents for being vague and uncertain. The letter did, however, confirm that testing had finished and that students are now at no more risk than any other member of the general public.

The story has caught the attention of many local and national newspapers, including the BBC[7] and the Daily Mail.[8]

A meeting with the school's headteacher and Public Health England was said to take place in September to discuss the matter further. However, there has since been no information about this.

It is likely to remain unclear exactly how many students and staff have been infected, although 'nearly 200' is the official stated amount.

Public Health England and Mr Mark Woodlock have stressed that if any current or former student experiences any symptoms of tuberculosis, immediate medical advice should be sought. This includes a dry or mucousy cough lasting three weeks or more, rapid and unexplained weight loss, night sweats, chest pain whilst breathing, fatigue, blood in sputum and chills. Young children, the elderly, those who are immunocompromised, those who are from a high risk background or have recently visited a country where TB rates are high and those that have had previous or current lung or respiratory diseases are also at very high risk and should immediately seek medical advice if they experience any symptoms of tuberculosis.

The treatment of staff and pupils will continue for the foreseeable future, and for those who have been affected with the active form of the disease will continue treatment for many more months.

It was confirmed that the BBC will be broadcasting a special episode of Inside Out South West on the 'biggest school outbreak of TB in the last 20 years' . This will be broadcast on BBC One South West on October 19, 2015.

The school's headteacher has provided statements to the local media about the issue but is likely to not give an interview.


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