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Passing on a family gem

In 1978, after an interesting career as an engineer, Tony Wood-Rogers entered the ELT industry by founding Exeter Academy. And now, after 42 years, he has decided to retire and pass the school on to a new owner, Richard May.

The May family has been in professional adult education since the 1960s. Richard’s father owned St James’s Secretarial College Group, a network of four business, language and secretarial colleges that provided executive assistants tor many top multinational chief executives, prime ministers and Buckingham Palace.

“I’ve known Tony for some years,” says Richard. “He’s created and nurtured a wonderful language school, and the team he assembled with Andy Bungay as principal is unrivalled. To have teachers so loyal to the school, some for over 30 years, is a real testimony to Tony and to them, and to the way the Academy cares for every student. Yes, we will add some modern touches and tech, but to preserve the Exeter Academy’s special experience is very important to me and my family. It was a very easy decision to become the new steward of Exeter Academy – a real gem set in one of the best parts of England to visit, live to the full and learn.”

Image courtesy of Anna and Richard May
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Melanie Butler
Melanie Butler
Melanie started teaching EFL in Iran in 1975. She worked for the BBC World Service, Pearson/Longman and MET magazine before taking over at the Gazette in 1987 and also launching Study Travel magazine. Educated in ten schools in seven countries, she speaks fluent French and Spanish and rather rusty Italian.
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