· 5th January – Term begins
· 12th January – Year 7 Parents’ Evening, 4pm - 6pm
· 21st January – Year 7 Parents’ Information Programme (Y7 Science), 6pm
· 26th January – 6th February, Year 11 Mock Exams
It is the presence of shepherds at the stable that always surprises me. At the time of Christ, shepherds were outsiders and classed as so by other villagers. They experienced a certain amount of social isolation; they were at the bottom of the social ladder. It is noteworthy that the birth of Christ was announced to people such as these rather than kings and priests.
Christians believe that the Christ brings light into the world and comes to reconcile humanity to God. The Christmas story teaches that this message of liberation is for all. We all want to do our part to end poverty and to bring peace where there is division. The shepherds teach us that people that may be considered as outsiders today need to be seen as integral parts of our community. Which people are sometimes seen as outsiders? Perhaps those who find themselves homeless, or those with diseases which stigmatise. Or perhaps those who suffer from mental health issues, or those whose behaviour we find difficult. A modern day version of the Christmas story would surely include those that feel excluded by society.
This Christmas when we look at the stable scene we remember that the shepherds would not have been the first choice for the welcoming committee for the Christ-child at that time. Therefore, let us all do our part to share goodwill with all of those around us.
Have a relaxing break and a very merry Christmas.
Michael Wardle, Headteacher
End of Term reports for pupils in Years 7-11 were published on ePortal yesterday. Pupils received a paper copy of their report from their form tutors. Years 7-9 percentage tables of levels in each subject are given on each child’s report.
Mr Bancroft, Deputy Head
Ski Trip Reminder
Please can I remind parents whose children are going on the ski trip on 17th January 2015 that after the Christmas break I need all passports, EHIC cards and spending money by Friday 9th January.
Spending money in Euros should be in a separate envelope with your child’s name and the amount enclosed written on please.
May I also take this opportunity to remind you that we meet at Newcastle Airport departures area at 3:45am in order to get through check in and security for the 6:15am flight (Jet2 Flight LS579).
Mrs Hopper, PE Department
On Tuesday, Years 7 and 8 had the opportunity to see the play of "A Christmas Carol" based on the book by Charles Dickens. The play was very faithful to the book and the actors got into character very well. This term 7P1, Ms O'Neill- Walton's English class, have been studying "A Christmas Carol" and therefore they had the chance to work with the actors.
The workshop involved a series of games to help us portray the characters realistically. We also staged five different tableaux depicting the separate staves of "A Christmas Carol". The whole event was really interesting and helped us to understand the book better.
Naomi Erlebach, Year 7
Over 300 runners took part in the Santa Run on Wednesday this week.
Winner: Sam Gibson, Year 7, Heaviside
Best dressed runners: Ellen Moir, Year 7, Kenny and Leon Hartland Year 8, Heaviside.
Money raised from the Santa Run will be donated to St. Cuthbert's Hospice.
Mrs Bell, Head of Year 8
Et Verbum caro factus est MP3
This anthem was written by Mrs Holmes for the massed choirs of Durham Johnston School. It sets verses 1 and 14 from St. John’s gospel in both English and Latin, and was performed in public for the first time at the annual Christmas Concert on Thursday 11th December. It will also be performed in the School Carol Service in Durham Cathedral this afternoon.
To listen click here: Et Verbum caro factus est
Mr Holmes, Subject Leader for Music
Durham Johnston is hosting the an NUT Education Question Time event – Friday 16th January 5pm-7pm – confirmed speakers – Kevin Courtney (DGS NUT), Pat Glass (MP), Prof. Rob Coe (CEM Centre), Sean Harford (OFSTED), David Simmons (LGA). Come and ask questions. All Welcome!
Mr Bann, Social Sciences