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  • Community effort delivers bags of joy to local families

    Published on Monday 22nd June 2020

    Woodlands Meed Teaching Assistant, Sarah Smith and her family have been busy collecting and coordinating some feel good food hamper deliveries for local families in need over the past few months.

    After hearing how a Woodlands Meed family was struggling to provide treat and snack type items for their child with special needs, Sarah wanted to help out. 

    ‘I know how much difference a treat can make to a child with special and sensory needs and it’s really hard for some families if they find themselves unable to provide them.  Food items like wafer biscuits and crisps are often liked for their sensory texture and flavours but aren’t often included in parcels from the food bank.  I just wanted to help this family with a bag of treat items to complement the food they were receiving from the foodbank.  Not being able to enjoy an occasional treat during lockdown because of the circumstances you’re in just didn’t seem very fair ’

    What started out as a kind gesture of one bag of treats has snowballed into Sarah and her family collecting and organising dozens of bags and become a community wide effort.

    Food donations have been received from kind friends and neighbours who wanted to get involved to help.  Sarah has also received some generous donations so she has been able to buy what items she needs to make up a variety of bags to suit the needs of the local families they she is helping.

    Head teacher at Woodlands Meed, Adam Rowland said

    ‘Many families have been struggling during the Coronavirus lockdown and have found themselves in difficult situations through the loss of loved ones, losing jobs, being unable to leave the house and many other reasons.  Sarah and her fellow helpers have done an amazing job in not just helping Woodlands Meed families but lots of other families in need in our local community.  Through their efforts Sarah has been able to bring a little bit of happiness to families who really appreciate it during these difficult times.’

  • The school site celebrated Sport Relief in true Woodlands Meed style with plenty of energy, commitment and FUN!  Students were encouraged to dress in their favourite sporting attire which ranged from football shirts, to rugby jersies, to Sport Relief t-shirts.  There was even evidence of sweat bands and leg warmers!

    The day started with the whole school participating in The Sport Relief Mile.  We really could not be prouder of our students who tackled this distance with enthusiasm and determination, as they completed eight laps of the field!  The support and encouragement for one another was truly amazing!

    All students then had the opportunity to bounce, cycle and row in aid of sport relief, and they attempted these challenges with great effort and dedication.  A massive thank you to Burgess Hill Academy for loaning us the rowers and exercise bikes.

    Furthermore there were plenty of other activities on offer for the students to participate in.  Here are the results from a few of these activities:

    Sports’ Quiz

    1st Sonny

    2nd Christina

    3rd Aaron P

    4th Megan


    Balls in a Bucket

    1st Kieran

    2nd Talitha

    3rd Amy G

    4th Zack


    Ping Pong Bounce

    1st Sonny/Brayden

    2nd Amy

    3rd Lily

    4th Matty

    Table Cricket

    1st Quinn

    2nd Taylor

    3rd Soraia, Daniel, Freddie, Oscar, Harvey, Ethan


    1st Nathan C

    2nd Louie

    3rd Daniel

    The fun didn’t stop there, as Emma and her team decided to challenge their students to do as many bounces as they could for Sport Relief during their Rebound sessions.  Everyone tried really hard to bounce higher, to bounce for longer, and to bounce with style!  Emma was extremely proud of her rebounders who accumulated a whopping 2,884 bounces!  Well done guys!

    We finished our day’s celebration with a 45 minute Zumba session curtesy of the amazing Anita!  Despite the students’ already very active day, this was hugely popular, with most of the school attending and matching the energy levels of the very inspirational Anita.

    It was a fantastic day of activities and fund raising.  A massive thank you to everyone for all their support and enthusiasm in making it the success that it was! 


  • Thanks to everyone at Burgess Hill Bonfire Society for their generous donation of £600 to Woodlands Meed from last year’s procession. Friends of Woodlands Meed Committee Member Inga Herlihy was invited to join BHBS for their celebrations on Saturday and was presented with the amazing cheque!


  • Superb Sports’ Leaders Success!

    Published on Friday 7th February 2020

    Our year 9 sports’ leaders have made a fantastic start to their sports’ leaders training.  They have just completed five weeks of coaching with students from Bhasvic College whereby they participated in a number of warm up games and activities, before exploring whole team sports such as Kwik Cricket. 

    For the first couple of weeks, the BHASVIC students led these sessions so that our students had the opportunity to learn how to successfully lead a session, and give them ideas regarding the types of activities they may like to lead themselves. It also gave our students the opportunity to build relationships with the Bhasvic Students and gain in confidence… and didn’t they just!!!

    As the roles were reversed, our students put into practice what they had learnt from their initial sessions; planning and leading warm up games, activities and matches with an ever growing confidence in the remaining sessions.  Our students worked together as they explained and demonstrated the different skills required, and also offered encouragement to the Bhasvic students.  It is a pleasure to see that, even over a short period of time, our year 9s have grown enormously, and have made a great start in developing the key skills required to be a great sports’ leader.  Well done guys, we are so proud of you!

  • We are very excited to announce that after the highly successful pilot scheme last year, GOSketch is back with a BANG! Thanks to Neil and his team at JOLF, our current year 9s will access this amazing opportunity which incorporates two of our most popular subjects; art and sport!

    Our students will be provided with a 10 week programme which focusses on communication, fine and gross motor skills, and most importantly teamwork.  Our students will work in two teams to design and create a character, persona and colour scheme which, once finalised, will be used to produce some chosen pieces of merchandise that the students will be allowed to keep!  These could include t-shirts, baseball caps and putting clubs, all complete with THEIR character and colour exciting is that?! 

    We will keep you updated on their progress and look forward to presenting our students’ final designs!

    #watchthisspace #getcreative #littleapprentices

     Our students have thoroughly enjoyed their first half of GoSketch sessions. They have had the opportunity to receive some coaching from the Neil; tackling a number of putting challenges with great enthusiasm and success!

    Furthermore, the students have also worked really hard on the art and design elements of this project.  They were put into two teams, each with an allocated team captain.  Their first challenge was to come up with a team name that they all agreed on, and after a lot of discussions, we now have our two teams:

    1. The Whisperers

    2. The Gull-Actic Golfers

    Students have been working hard on their logos and characters for their team, which when finalised will be revealed to the rest of the school!



    Published on Thursday 6th February 2020

    On Monday, the 27th January, Fox Class travelled to The Triangle in Burgess Hill for the latest Boccia and New Age Kurling Tournament. 

    The students were split into two groups with both having the opportunity to play five games of both boccia and NAK.  The students built on their experiences from the first tournament they attended before Christmas, demonstrating greater accuracy and execution of shots, as well as, a more developed tactical approach; consequently winning a far greater number of matches than last time!

    As always, our students did us proud; conducting themselves in a way that epitomised the sportsmanship we strive for at Woodlands Meed, whilst also demonstrating a great team spirit as they tried their best and supported each other from the start until the very end of the tournament.

    All students received certificates that were handed out in assembly, due to the fantastic manner in which they participated, but Our ‘Magic Moment Awards’ were given to Lochlan and Jadon, but  Well done!


  • Woodlands Meed held its first Careers and Transition Fair on 14 January at The Kings Church in Burgess Hill. 

    The event brought together local employers, day services, transitional services and further education settings with a passion for recognising the potential of people with SEND in the world of work and the value of giving them an opportunity to make a valued contribution to society.

    Woodlands Meed is a generic special needs school and college in West Sussex. The students have a very broad range of special needs and disabilities. Many of the students find new and unfamiliar environments and people challenging and the SEND Careers and Transition Fair helped provide a highly supportive space to experience meaningful encounters with employers and transitional organisations to engage and inspire.

    Key Stage 3 students attended in the morning followed by with Key Stages 4 and 5 in the afternoon.  Parents and staff were invited to visit the event from 3- 5pm along with other young people with SEND from different provisions locally to share the positive impact of this event beyond just those at Woodlands Meed.

    The feedback from those who attended described the event as a great success and incredibly valuable in giving young people a chance to gain a detailed insight into work possibilities and some of the future opportunities available.  The businesses who attended felt it also provided local employers with an insight into working with young people with SEND.


    The Careers team at Woodlands Meed are already planning next year’s event, if you’re a local business who would like to know more please email

  • Albion in the Community - Niamh's Story

    Published on Monday 25th November 2019

    Find out how Albion in the Community have helped Niamh Newman overcome her disability

  • A ground-breaking table cricket league for children and young adults with complex physical disabilities was launched in Sussex on Friday.

    The joint project between Sussex Cricket Foundation and Chailey Heritage Foundation is based in Chailey Heritage’s brand-new Dream Centre in North Chailey, near Lewes.

    Students from Sussex Cricket’s network of special educational needs school and colleges are competing in the league using adapted equipment built by engineer Dr Martin Langner from Chailey Heritage that allows those with the most complex needs to operate batting and bowling devices independently.

    In Friday’s first fixture, Chailey Heritage School took on Woodlands Meed School. The two-innings match ended in a thrilling tie, with both teams’ making a combined total of 357.

    Further rounds of the competition will take place each half-term between now and the summer of 2020 when the eventual winner will be crowned.

    Sussex Cricket Foundation coaches have been funded by the Lord’s Taverners charity to support the teams taking part and officiate the matches.

    Opening up the game to other special educational needs schools and colleges in the county, the league builds on the success of weekly table cricket sessions for Chailey Heritage School pupils that have been delivered by Sussex Cricket Foundation over the last two years.

    Aroop Tanna, Sussex Cricket’s disability cricket manager said: “We’re thrilled to be launching this new competition with our friends at Chailey Heritage. I remember our conversation 12 months ago when we discussed how amazing it would be to get young people with the most complex disabilities playing table cricket matches independently.

    “It is fantastic that with the support of Lord's Taverners, this collaboration is able to bring young people together from different schools and colleges to access competitive sport in such a spectacular environment.

    “The new league is another example of Sussex Cricket Foundation’s aim to grow disability cricket and make the game more accessible to the wider community.”

    Al Carter, School Sports Development Officer for Chailey Heritage School said:  “We are thrilled to be enabling young people with complex disabilities to access sport thanks to these devices.

    “This group have never had the opportunity to participate like this, but through our innovation and partnership with Sussex Cricket Foundation and Lord’s Taverners, they now can take part in meaningful inter-school competition.”

    Baz Baron, a teacher at Woodlands Meed School, added: “A huge thanks to Penny at Woodlands Meed, Al from Chailey Heritage and Aroop at Sussex Cricket for creating this exciting bond our schools now have.

    “Hedgehog class are honoured to represent Woodlands Meed and we have all been very excited about the fixture at Chailey Heritage. Our children have taken to table cricket with keeness and thoroughly enjoy playing. It's great to see how far they have come in their skills in such a short space of time. We don't like cricket. We love it!”

    How does a game of table cricket work?

    The game is played on a table-tennis table or similar, with boundary fences set up around three edges.

    Teams are made up of six players and each team bats once.

    Every team member bats and bowls for one over each.

    The ball is delivered down a ramp and the batsmen use a mini cricket bat to attempt to hit the ball.

    The members of the fielding side who aren’t bowling surround the three edges of the table using a sliding board to try and intercept the ball once it has been hit by the batsman.

    Runs are scored if the batsman hits the ball into the boundary without it being intercepted by the fielders. The number of runs scored depends on which part of the boundary the ball hits.

    If the fielder manages to intercept the ball and it hits the white part of their board, then no runs are scored. If the fielder intercepts the ball and it hits the red central part of their board then the batsman is caught out.

    The batsman can also be out bowled if he misses the ball, LBW if he misses the ball and it hits his body and caught behind if he edges the ball behind.

    If a batsman is dismissed, five runs are deducted from his team’s total.

    The team with the most runs after both sides have batted is the winner!

    Check out these handy video guides from the Lord's Taverners for more information...

  • We don't like cricket … we love it!!!

    Published on Tuesday 19th November 2019

    On the 15th November, eight of our inspiring young people attended the table-top cricket competition, the very first of its kind at Chailey’s new Dream Centre.  After successful coaching sessions with Sussex Cricket and a truly magical day at The County Ground in Hove last year, we are keen that our students have as many opportunities to participate in this inclusive sport which they clearly love!

    Our students, staff and parents were welcomed to the Dream Centre by Al and his inspirational students before the match began.  The game then started in traditional fashion through the toss of a coin which Chailey won and decided to bat first.  WM were very eager to use the new adapted table cricket equipment which has been created due to some amazing collaborative work between Chailey and their engineers.  Both batting and fielding can now be accessed through receiving information from a variety of switches which can be activated via hand, head and other subtle body movements.  This allows the students to make choices and take more control. 

    WM started well, with captain Aya opening the bowling with a very strong over.  Chailey then demonstrated how skilful their students are, as their batting improved enormously during the first innings, and finished with a very impressive 290 runs!  It was now down to WM to respond, and didn’t we just!  Our students demonstrated some fantastic batting; every student got into double figures but it was Katie who led the way with a massive 19 runs!  It was very tense as we awaited the scores after the first innings, it was extremely tight with Woodlands Meed finishing with 291 runs, just one run in front of Chailey!  Play then stopped for a well-deserved lunch break.  When play then resumed, there was some magical batting and superb bowling by both sides, and plenty of smiles and laughter too!  

    Scores were calculated from both the first and second innings to provide a grand total.  This time, it really could not have been closer with both WM and Chailey finishing on exactly the same number of runs!  Therefore the first test ends in a draw!  Well done to all involved, there was some outstanding cricket played!

    We hope this will be a half-termly event, with the next test taking part after Christmas.  This was a real success and it is brilliant that all our students have the opportunity to participate in a competitive event, well done guys, we cannot wait for the next event!

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