The front entrance of Wescott School
|Headteacher||Miss S Hunter|
|DfE URN||109837 Tables|
Wescott School is a co-educational local authority infant school in Wokingham, Berkshire, England. The school caters for children from ages four to seven (Reception to Year 2). Children join the school as "Rising Fives" and there is a three-term intake with a maximum of around 150 children on roll each year. Wescott holds the prestigious Artsmark Gold Award from the Arts Council, and in 2003 it was awarded a DFES School Achievement Award. The school has also been awarded Healthy Schools status.
The school was founded in 1828 as a National School for boys and girls, and was originally located in Rose Street, Wokingham, behind the existing houses at numbers 9 and 11. By 1901, the population of the town had increased threefold and as there was no room for expansion on the Rose Street site it was decided to build a new school in Goodchild Road. The new school opened on 8 January 1906. It was known as the Wescott Road Council School, and was named after Thomas Manley Wescott, the first Mayor of Wokingham. The school was built by W. Watson, builders of Ascot, at a cost of £6,000. The architect was Edmund Fisher, who was also responsible for the design of a number of other Berkshire schools. The school was intended to accommodate 400 children but the attendance was mixed and averaged 240 pupils a day during its early years. The school originally catered for boys and girls from five through to 14, which was then the school leaving age. The first headmaster was a Mr George Manoah Ebenezer Fryer. There were 11 other teachers and 222 children on the register in the first month. A further building, known as the annexe, was erected in 1911 for woodwork, cookery, and the evening continuation classes. The secondary-age pupils moved out in the 1950s to join the newly built St Crispin's School. In 1974, with the opening of Westende Junior School, Wescott became an infant school, educating children up to the age of seven.
Wescott School was designated as a Grade II listed building on 24 June 1998 by English Heritage, who describe it as a "well-designed and executed early-C20 school in the Arts and Crafts style". The adjacent school annexe, which was originally the technology block but now houses a nursery school, is also a Grade II listed building.
The school celebrated its centennial in 2006. Her Royal Highness Princess Anne visited the school on 28 March 2006 as part of the centennial celebrations to unveil a commemorative plaque. She was entertained with a short musical performance by the children, followed by the first public performance of The Wescott School song, commissioned by the school from Luke Bedford, a former pupil and winner of the BBC’s Young Composer of the Year award (2004).
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The school has a central hall surrounded by six classrooms, each of which has its own computer facilities. Wescott was selected as one of the pilot sites for the National Grid for Learning. The school hall is used by the local community for a variety of activities including: Rainbows, Brownies, fitness classes and football training. There is a private day nursery located within the playground which has an informal link with the school. Most of the children from Westcott move on to Westende Junior School. The two schools work closely together and have a joint Parent Teachers' Association. Westende School has a heated outdoor swimming pool, and Wescott pupils have swimming lessons at the pool during the summer months. Parents and pupils who belong to the school Swimming Association can also use the swimming pool after school and during the summer holidays.
- "Wescott Infant School Inspection Report" (pdf). OFSTED. Retrieved 11 January 2011.
- The Wokingham Society. Wokingham: A Chronology, 1978.
- Hosking R. A brief history of the Wescott Road/Seaford Road Area. The Wokingham Historian, Number 6, June 1993.
- Wyatt, B. Wokingham in Old Photographs. Stroud, Gloucestershire: Budding Books, 1995. ISBN 1-84015-128-5.
- Images of England reference number 469349
- Images of England reference number 469350
- Princess Anne join's [sic] school's 100th birthday celebrations
- Royal Visit To Mark The 100th Brithday [sic] Of Wescott Infant School