Specialist Bristol boys’ school opens first library

Notton House Academy received a £5k donation towards new books

Notton House Academy in Wiltshire has opened a new library to develop student literacy skills.

Children and families minister Michelle Donelan MP, via FaceTime, opened the new library at the school, Bristol’s only residential school for boys with complex social, emotional and mental health needs.

Most boys joining Notton House Academy, are behind their peers in reading and writing, which can be due to undiagnosed communication needs.

The Foyle Foundation donated £5,000 to help the school open its first dedicated space for books – councillor and Chippenham mayor Desna Allen cut the ribbon.

Notton House Academy is one of the few residential boys-only schools funded by local authorities and mostly takes students from Bristol.

Michelle Donelan, MP said: ““The library is a wonderful space – reading is not just about learning but also escapism and feeding the imagination. I hope the boys enjoy many adventures via their new books and library.”

Michelle Reysenn, headteacher at Notton House Academy said: “One of our main aims of Notton House Academy is developing literacy and communication skills. We want all of our pupils to leave with the confidence to become successful adults. Improved literacy also supports the mental health and well-being of our young people, and that is a priority for pupils at Notton House.”

The school currently numbers 52 boys aged between 8–19, some of which stay overnight on weekdays.

Pupils learn in small groups, receive one-to-one speech and language therapy and a tailored curriculum which prepares them for reintegration into further education, apprenticeships or work.

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