Durham Johnston Comprehensive School

Dare to be wise



Friday Bulletin

Friday Bulletin Archive

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Headteacher's Message

Dear parents and carers,

It won’t have escaped your attention that the UK has been focusing on what it is to be British, and what it is to be English or Scottish. Recent events in the North West have caused Ofsted to begin checking to what extent schools are promoting that which they call British values. On recent Ofsted training, many of my inspector colleagues were rightly asking what these British values are. Clearly, these can be understood in a variety of ways, but Ofsted has defined these as ‘democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs’. The Johnston has been teaching these through the formal and informal curriculum for decades now.

As the school moves into its usual rhythm after the six weeks break, we have been reminding students of the importance of good behaviour. At Johnston we define behaviour as that which promotes courtesy, successful learning, a pleasant atmosphere, happiness, security, co-operation and consideration of other people within our community and school environment. This takes both effort and a positive mind set and a desire to be patient and understanding with one another. As parents, I ask you to remind your children of this. As you will know, young people sometimes need reminding of this! In addition to the Ofsted definition, being British is also being polite and courteous and considering those around us.

Have a good weekend.

Michael Wardle


Dates For Your Diary


·         Year 7 Parents’ Information Programme, Maths in Year 7 – Wednesday 24 September, 6.00 p.m.

·         Thursday 25 and Friday 26, photographer in school to take students’ individual photos

·         Year 6 Open Day – Monday 29 September 10,00 a.m., 6.00 and 6.45 p.m. please click here for further details

·         Sixth Form Open Evening  - Monday 6 October,  6.00 p.m. – 8.00 p.m.

·         Year 11 Parents’ Consultation Evening – Monday 17 November 4.00 – 6.00 p.m.

·         Year 13 Parents’ Consultation Evening – Monday 1 December, 4.00 – 6.00 p.m.

·         Year 12 Parents’ Consultation Evening – Monday 8 December, 4.00 – 6.00 p.m.


Year 7 Visit to Durham Cathedral – 23rd and 24th September

We are pleased to inform parents and carers that over Wednesday 24th and Thursday 24th September, the whole of Year 7 will visit Durham Cathedral. This is part of the school’s response to the Henley report, which encourages schools to offer opportunities for children to experience high culture, including heritage sites. Forms 7DA, 7UA, 7RH and 7HH will go on Wednesday and 7AK, 7MK, 7JW and 7CW will go on Thursday. Pupils will be out of school for the whole day. Please note that your child will need to bring a packed lunch with them on the day of their visit.  

A letter has been sent to all parents and carers with full details of the visit.  A copy of the letter can be viewed here.

Please do feel free to contact me viaschool with any concerns or queries.

Miss McKenzie, History Department


Year 7 Parents’ Information Programme - Introduction to Year 7 Maths

On Wednesday 24 September at 6.00 p.m. we will hold the first in a series of introductory programmes for Year 7 parents.   The first session is entitled Introduction to Year 7 Maths and will be held in Maths Room 2.  Led by subject leader for Maths, Ann Rush,  there will be lots of exciting things to do.  We look forward to seeing as many Year 7 parents as can make it.


Homework Club

The first Homework Club session will begin next Tuesday, 23 September at 2.45 pm in Lydia and adjoining IT suite.  Learning Support Staff and Sixth Form students will be on hand to offer pupils support and guidance. 

 Come to Homework Club!

Everybody welcome!

When: Every Tuesday

Time: 2.45pm – 4.00pm

Where: Lydia Centre

Refreshments provided!


If you want to do your homework on your own, this is a peaceful place to be.

If you would like some extra help, Sixth Formers and Learning Support staff will be available to work with you.

You can work in the IT Suite on computers.

You can play board games or computer games after you have finished your homework.


Late transport is provided for those pupils living in the Brandon or Bowburn areas.  Buses leave the school site promptly at 4.30 p.m.  Pupils wishing to use either of the buses should ensure that they sign the list at Reception before break to indicate that they require transport on Tuesday.

Mrs Farrell, Subject Leader, Learning Support


DotCom Visit


Year 11 students are working on their controlled assessment which focuses on a young person setting up their own computer sales and repair business.

In order to assist them we had a visit from Michele Simpson, an owner of DOTCOM Systems, located in North Road.  Michelle spoke about the general running of a small business; the promotional strategies open to them and the importance of customer service.

This primary research will enhance the students’ work by giving them a greater understanding of the context of their assessment.

Mr Tait, Subject Leader for Business and Enterprise


Is Oxbridge For Me?



Earlier in the term 11 eager pupils from Year 11 embarked on a short visit to the lofty spires of Oxford and Cambridge universities.  Whilst there, they experienced the luxurious delights of compact student digs, fantastic ice cream and the perils of bicycles. Punting was also experimented with alongside some excellent lectures as they dipped their toes into some serious academia.

Mr Weaver, Assistant Head


Durham Johnston Sixth Form  -  Weekly Notices and Information

For Sixth Form students, we draw up a weekly notices / information sheets.  It is an eclectic mix of opportunities, meetings, deadlines and events – and the occasional admonishment!

We emphasise the importance of developing effective communication throughout Sixth Form, and accessing and acting on the information on the notices is part of this process.  Form Tutors and A level subject teachers are given a weekly copy and all Sixth Form students receive it by email.

If you want to keep up with what’s going on – please follow this link.

Mrs Lennon, Deputy Head of Sixth Form


Teams of the Week

All 5 football teams travelled to Woodham on Tuesday night. We had excellent results winning 4 of the 5 games.

The Year 7’s won 5 – 2, the Year 8’s won 8 – 0. It was a double league and cup game for the Year 9’s which they won 7 – 1 having been 1 – 0 down.

Our only defeat came with the Year 10’s losing to a very strong team 5 – 1. The Year 11 team opened their league campaign with a comfortable 3 – 0 victory.

Our VIth form team played their first game on Wednesday against North Durham Academy. They were winning 2 – 1 with 10 minutes to go but unfortunately conceded 2 late goals to lose 3 – 2.

On Thursday our Year 8 team travelled to Monkwearmouth in the 1st round of the County Cup. Unfortunately just after half – time Alfie Phillips suffered a broken ankle and had to be taken to hospital. The game was abandoned and will have to be re-arranged. Hopefully Alfie will make a speedy recovery and will be back in action  ready for the second half of the season.

Finally good luck to our U14 girls football team who are taking on English Martyrs in the County Cup tonight.

Mr Hopper, Subject Leader for PE