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Exhall Grange School and Science College is a community special school located in Ash Greenmarker just outside Coventrymarker in Warwickshiremarker, Englandmarker. The school caters for pupils ranging in age from two to 19 years, and who have a range of disabilities and learning difficulties, including physical disability, visual impairment and Autism Spectrum Disorder.

History

Founded in 1951 on the site of a former army base, the school originally specialised in teaching pupils with visual impairment. However, it later began to extend its facilities and to enrol students with other disabilities. It was, for many years, predominantly a boarding school with pupils attending from across the United Kingdom, and it was regarded as being among the best in its field.

In more recent years, a greater number of children with single disabilities have gradually been included in mainstream education, and Exhall Grange's role as a special school has adapted as a consequence. Many of its students now have multiple disabilities, while the residential facilities were phased out over the 1990s and 2000s. The school now caters largely for pupils living in the local vicinity, with the main catchment area being the northern part of Warwickshiremarker, including Bedworthmarker and Nuneatonmarker. Although it has a Coventry postal address, it actually comes under the control of Warwickshire Education Authority.

In 2001, Rushton Hall, an RNIB school based in Ketteringmarker, Northamptonshiremarker, relocated to the Exhall Grange campus. However, the two schools remain independent organisations.

In July 2003, Exhall Grange became the first special school to achieve specialist science college status.

In 2009 the school opened a new gymnasium and the old gym was demolished.

In June 2009 work got under way on building the region's first hospice dedicated to the care of young children. Zoe’s Place will offer one-to-one palliative and respite care, and terminal care for children up to the age of five who have life-limiting illnesses and special complex needs. An appeal to raise £650,000 to help fund the building of the hospice was launched in March 2008, and it is due to open in Spring 2010.

House system

In its days as a boarding school pupils at Exhall Grange were placed into one of six houses, each of which had approximately 50 boarding and day pupils ranging in age from 5 to 18. The school was unusual in that all meals were taken in houses, as opposed to a central dining system. The boys' houses were named Canterbury, Lancaster, Warwick and Windsor. The girls' houses were Avon and Kenilworth. A seventh house, York House, was used for staff accommodation.

Beginning in September 1988 the house system was changed so that pupils were accommodated in various age groups. Canterbury and Lancaster housed juniors and those in the first, second and third years. Warwick housed fourth and fifth year pupils and Windsor accommodated boys from the sixth form. Avon and Kenilworth became Avon Junior and Avon Senior. Three superhouses were then created for the purpose of sporting activities. These were named Phoenix, Wyvern and Yale.

As the school's role changed during the 1990s and 2000s, much of the boarding accommodation was gradually done away with. Warwick and Windsor were the first houses to close in the early 1990s, followed later by Avon. Lancaster and Canterbury (by then known collectively as Lancaster) were the final houses to close when the school ceased to be a boarding school in 2004. The only boarding accommodation offered on the site now is at Rushton Hall.

Headmasters

Exhall Grange has had three headteachers during its time. Before the present incumbent, Richard Bignell served as headmaster from 1981 until his retirement in 2005. Mr Bignell was preceded by George Marshall, who held the position between 1951 and 1981. The current headmaster is John Truman.

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