Headteacher's Christmas Message
Dear parents and carers,
Last year as we broke up for the Christmas break I referenced the shepherds from the story of the Nativity. ‘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’. I took the opportunity of reflecting on those people that we might consider as outsiders, and encouraged us all to think of others at this time of year.
This year, especially in the light of recent world events, it is interesting to think about the ‘wise men’. These astronomers (or even astrologers) from the East came to bring gifts, and to visit the Christ child. As I said when I spoke to the sixth form this week, they came to bring gifts and show respect. In return the family welcomed them in, accepted their gifts and respected their beliefs. It is possible to see, therefore, even from the beginning of the narrative a level of acceptance and inclusion of others.
My Christmas card this year quotes mother Teresa, and I have used this quote before.’ Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile’.
On behalf of the staff and governors of the Johnston, I wish you a happy Christmas and all the best for the coming year.
Michael Wardle, Headteacher
Following the recent election Anna Mason and Chris Buckley have been appointed as parent governors onto the school's Governing Body.
The following students have been appointed and will take up their duties with effect from January 2016.
Ciaran Bowman - Head Boy, Eleanor Curry - Head Girl, Tom Wilkinson - Deputy Head Boy, Sofia Hryniv - Deputy Head Girl
We would like to bring to your attention that the senior team will be checking standards of uniform in January. Please click on the following link for a copy of the uniform list for students in Year 7 - 11.
In the event that you are considering purchasing replacement items of uniform during the holidays please may we remind you that:
Maintaining a high standard of uniform is vital. It helps set the climate for learning and we appreciate your support in upholding the high standards we set.
Once again this year we have taken part in the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Christmas appeal.In November we held an assembly where the Angel Tree was introduced to the students. An undecorated Christmas tree was filled with tags and on each tag was the gender and age of a child. House representatives from Annand, Wakenshaw, Kenny and Heaviside houses were invited to pick a tag from the tree and take it back to the form group. Over three weeks the form group would decide on a suitable gift for the child on the tag, raise money or organise donations and bring the gift to a subsequent assembly in December.
In the second assembly we welcomed Lieutenants Lorna and David White from the Salvation Army in Langley Moor to receive and collect the gifts for distribution to families and children in need across County Durham.
We hoped that within the form class the students would build a sense of community and teamwork to benefit someone less fortunate than them. We have been overwhelmed by the response by the students and the thoughtfulness and generosity of the gifts that have been donated. With many more underprivileged children in our community this year our contribution to the Salvation Army Angel Tree appeal has been greatly appreciated and will make a big difference to families in Durham this Christmas.
Mrs Dunn, House Co-ordinator
Yesterday 304 students took part in the annual Santa Run and raised the fantastic sum of £376.20 for St Cuthbert's Hospice.
Community and Events Fundraiser, Jade McArdle was delighted that the school continues to support this event each year.
If you would like to learn more about the work of St Cuthbert's Hospice in the community and how you can get inolved, please see below.
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Christmas Jumper Day
We are pleased to report that nearly £460 was raised from in Support of this year's Christmas Jumper Appeal 2015. Thank you to all students, parents and staff who supported the event.
Advance Notice: York 10 Work Experience
Please click on the following link to read further details of our plans for Year 10 students to undertake a work experience placement during Wellbeing Week in July 2016.
Miss Bittlestone, Subject Leader for Guidance
On Tuesday Sixth Form bands Interstellar Propeller and Splinter performed in front of a very receptive crowd in a fundraising gig organised by the Sixth Form Amnesty Group. ‘Jamnesty’ began with a lively set from Interstellar Propeller and was followed by a mellower performance from Splinter, which featured some of their own material. It was an unforgettable night, a showcase of the Sixth Form’s artistic talents and a roaring success, raising £128 for Human Rights causes. Amnesty would like to offer a wholehearted thanks to all that came, helped, organised and performed.
Charlotte Austin, Chair, DJCS Amnesty International Youth Grou
On Monday our VIth form basketball team travelled to Harrogate for the triangular tournament in the English Schools competition. Our first game against St Aidan’s was an excellent match which was close throughout. Despite some late pressure we hung on to win 42 – 31. The second match against York College was more straightforward as we dominated the game to win 43 – 20.
The VIth form team were back in Yorkshire on Tuesday playing Queen Ethelburga’s School. Again we played some excellent basketball to win 69 – 43. We are now top of the North East group and need to beat Fulford College in our final game to progress to the National knockout stages.
Also on Tuesday our Year 7 boys and girls football teams were at Parkside for the Bishop Auckland Schools 5-a-side finals. Unfortunately our boys team had a slow start in the semi-final against the hosts and were 3 – 0 down. A late surge saw us get back to 3 – 2 and despite hitting the post twice we couldn’t find an equalizer. The girls had more success as both our A and B teams won their semi-finals making it an all Durham Johnston final. The A team won and they now go forward to the County finals in January.
On Wednesday our Year 9 football team left school early to travel to Rockcliffe Hall to play Hurworth School in the County Cup quarter final. This was a great cup tie as we went 1 – 0 down, then 2 – 1 behind,before a late equalizer took to the game to penalties. We held our nerve to score all five and progress to the semi-final.
Also on Wednesday our Year 11 basketball team were taking part in the Tyneside Schools tournament. We had easy victories over St Robert’s and Parkview but a poor shooting performance against Biddick saw us lose by 3 points meaning we finished as runners-up.
Yesterday our Year 7 basketball team were playing at home in the Bishop Auckland Schools final against Staindrop. Our Year 7 team maintained their unbeaten start to the season with an outstanding 70 – 0 victory to become champions.
Finally last night our Year 9 rugby team were at Harton for a pre-Christmas friendly. They are an outstanding team as despite battling hard we lost 6 tries to 2.
Happy Christmas and looking forward to more sporting success in the New Year.
Mr Hopper, Subject Leader, PE