Newbury Manor School - Frome

Nr Mells
BA11 3RG

Tel. 01373 814 980

Fax. 01373 814 984

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Newbury Manor School, formerly Farleigh College Mells, is a specialist residential school for young people aged 7 to 19 with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) with moderate to severe learning difficulties and associated complex needs. These young people may also have challenging behaviour as a results of their lack of social understanding. They can reside up to 52 weeks per year at Bath Road Children's Home.

We provide:

  • Individual assessment and support to develop full academic and social potential
  • Short, medium and long term education and care
  • Structured independence training programmes to support pupils to achieve their maximum potential
  • A strong ethos of positive behaviour management
  • Close working relationships with parents
  • Continued and ongoing support with learning and life skills
  • Opportunities to integrate into community life
  • Intensive programmes and strategies designed to assist with anxiety
  • Safe, secure and independent living environment
  • For more information about the education services we provide in your local area, click here

Placements are flexible and can either be on a day or residential basis, full or part time and for up to 52 weeks of the year depending on individual need. Newbury Manor School also supports re-integration packages back into mainstream education. All of the young people referred to the school will have a Statement of Special Educational Need. Newbury Manor School, Mells can provide places for up to 48 pupils.

Outcomes and achievements

Our ethos was created in the belief that a positive, supportive, achieving culture is essential for good pupil progress. We seek to maximise independence and individual potential so pupils gain the skills to live happy, meaningful and fulfilling lives.

Individual plans and programmes are adjusted as required to meet the changing needs of each individual and the desired outcome is that we prepare all of our young people for the next stage of their journey, be that in further education, supported employment or lifelong supported environments.

We provide a total environment where young people are offered safe, secure and predictable surroundings in which they can come to understand their own areas of difficulties and learn skills and techniques in order to overcome them. This ensures that they are able to fulfil their potential socially, academically, physically and spiritually and enable them to rebuild their low self-esteem and self belief. 

Newbury Manor School Admissions

Newbury Manor School, Mells, is a specialist school for students with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) with moderate to severe learning difficulties and associated complex needs. Due to the diversity of terminology students may be diagnosed with high functioning autism (HFA), autistic spectrum disorder (ASD), pervasive development disorder (PDD), or Asperger's Syndrome traits.

Admissions criteria

  • Boys and girls aged between 7 and 19
  • A diagnosis of ASD with moderate to severe learning difficulties and complex needs
  • A statement of special educational need

Admissions process

Students who are invited for an interview have been formally assessed and statemented under the Education Acts of 1981 and 1993. Most families come to Newbury Manor School not knowing what to expect. During several hours on the day of visit, there is the opportunity to see the school at work, join into the various groups and get a general feel of the school. Some assessment of a student’s learning style and previous experience may be necessary but there is no admission test to pass.

Our admissions process is in three parts:

1. Parents are invited for an informal view to see the college in action

2. The young person is invited to spend some time at the college, usually overnight

3. When agreement is reached between the parents, local education authority (LEA) and the school, the young person is admitted as a student

Accessing and Funding of Education and Care

Newbury Manor School has a nationwide intake of boys and girls aged 7 to 19 years with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) with moderate to severe learning difficulties and associated complex needs. Most students will have a Statement of Special Educational Need.

Young people are referred to Newbury Manor School via local authorities, social services, education departments and health departments.

Placements are long-term and for up to 52 weeks of the year depending on individual need. 


Newbury Manor School is fully approved by the DCSF as a specialist residential school for pupils with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) with moderate to severe learning difficulties and associated complex needs and has recently achieved the Investors in People Award.

The curriculum is tailored to individual needs so that delivery styles, content and priorities meet their needs. The curriculum accessed by each student contains elements of the National Curriculum that are personalised and adapted to the pace, progression and specific needs of the young person as indicated in their Statement of Educational Need.


Newbury Manor School provides residential care through its range of living units in which we aim to provide students with the highest standards of care in a safe, predictable and stimulating environment. All students are allocated a pastoral tutor, whose primary task is to ensure the happiness and well being of individuals in their care. Pastoral tutors assist the class teacher and consultant psychologist through drawing up an individual education plan (IEP) which highlights strengths and weaknesses, and sets realistic targets. This is done by focusing on the areas of need as identified in student’s statements and reviews.

Newbury Manor School is aware of the difficulties that students can experience when away from home and tries to ensure that the environment is warm, secure and understanding. There is a large care staff team that, with tutors, endeavours to maintain links with home and share in keeping families up to date and involved in what happens at school. We aim to understand the individual needs of our students and ensure that leisure time is enjoyable, offering every student opportunities to develop new skills and face new challenges.

Accommodation and Facilities

Newbury Manor School is set in five acres of beautiful Somerset countryside. The main building, a grade II listed Queen Anne house accommodates all the residential units, kitchen and dining room and administrative offices. The majority of the educational facilities are located within the grounds. Bath is only 12 miles away and we are 80 minutes by train from London Paddington.

Accommodation is mainly through single room accomodation. All students have access to a lounge area for TV and video/DVD as well as facilities for making drinks and snacks. We have three separate living areas and an independent unit within the school, together with purpose built accommodation in Stoke St.Michael and Shepton Mallett.

Life development plans

Our experienced staff are specifically trained to provide a range of succesful interventions and support strategies which can include:

  • Intensive, personalised educational support and activity support
  • Intensive therapeutic and sensory diets
  • PECS - Picture Exchange Communication System
  • TEACCH - Treatment and education of Autistic and Related Communication Handicapped Children
  • Individually differentiated educational and social timetables
  • Access to sensory integration programmes

Newbury Manor School Policies

Newbury Manor School's Special Educational Needs Policy references the CDSF document Code of Practice on the identification and assessment of Special Educational Needs.

The School has a range of polices and local procedures regarding the welfare of students which are available on request:

  • Safeguarding Policy
  • Local Safeguarding Procedure
  • Anti Bullying Policy
  • Behaviour Management Policy
  • Exclusions Policy
  • Assessment Procedure
  • Complaints Policy with summary of complaints ( 2011 / 2012 )
  • Curriculum Policy
  • Equality and Diversity
  • English as an Additional Language
  • Health and Safety Procedures  
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Ofsted

Holistic approach

A wide range of trained professionals work with our students to provide an integrated therapeutic approach to the development of communication by providing speech, language and social skills training relevant to individual's abilities and needs. As well as individual and group sessions, the team offer advice and training to the rest of the staff to ensure that we are working with our students in the best possible way.

These include:

  • Individual care pathways tailored to individual needs
  • Behavioural therapy
  • Child and adolescent psychiatry and psychological support where needed
  • Access to specialist literacy support
  • Access to speech and language therapy and occupational therapy
  • Access to educational psychology

Newbury Manor School Quality and Regulation

Priory Education Services has a system for auditing the services provided against the regulations detailed by Ofsted Care and Education Inspection Standards and National Minimum Standards where appropriate. These are implemented at individual school level by managers and staff as part of the day to day life and work of the school and include expectations, systems, policy and procedures. Each school is audited for the quality of its provision and outcomes for the young people in its care by Priory's Regional Managers and by the School Improvement Partners who visit every term. The 'Every Child Matters' (ECM) agenda is at the heart of everything we do.