Durham Johnston Comprehensive School

Dare to be wise



Friday Bulletin

Friday Bulletin Archive

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2014 (37)

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April (12)

February (2)

Dates for Your Diary

  • Monday 18 April - Year 8 Parents' Consultation Evening, 4.00 - 6.00 p.m.
  • Wednesday 20 April - talk for Year 12 students and parents on studying in USA, 6.00 p.m.
  • Year 10 mock examination Tuesday 3 - 13 May 
  • Monday 2 May - school closed for May Day Bank Holiday


Headteacher's Message

Dear parents and carers,

Today in 1912 the Titanic sank. It is also the date of the Hillsborough Stadium Disaster (1989), and the anniversary of the day that over 200 girls were abducted by Boko Haram in Nigeria (2014). Sometimes the news only seems to record negative events where human suffering is highlighted and where things have gone wrong. However, today is also the day, 19th April 1945 when British troops liberated the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp near the end of World War 2.

Sometimes the press highlights only the difficulties that schools are facing. We hear much about difficulties with finances and teaching recruitment problems, for example. You will have been following the political impact of the white paper. Of course, there are also a great many positives for staff in school of working with young people and helping them develop academically and as rounded individuals. Here at the Johnston each week we can highlight so many of these opportunities in this bulletin. These capture but a few of these positive moments. With thousands and thousands of interactions each day between staff and students we continue to shape the Johnston community into one where we are all reflective, inquiring, tolerant, positive and respectful of the needs of others.  The statement on the front page of our website has been crafted over the years, and is a statement of what we stand for. Do re-read it at some point. One section reads: ‘we expect Johnstonians to have the highest standards of behaviour and we aim for our school to be a just and happy community so that our students understand how each person may be of service to society. Adults and young people alike share an ethic of hard work and public service. We want to be central to the life of Durham City and an educational force in the life of the communities we serve.’

Have a good weekend,

Yours sincerely,

Michael Wardle, Headteacher


Driving Onto Site

Thank you for responding to the school in relation to this.  Much of the traffic coming onto site has now stopped, and it is clear to staff that this has made the site safer at the beginning and the end of the day. Your continued co-operation is appreciated here.


Year 10 Mock Exams

Year 10 mock exams begin on Tuesday May 3rd and continue until Friday May 13th . Pupils were given the overall exam timetable before Easter. They will receive a personalised copy which includes seat numbers on Tuesday April 19th.  For your information a copy of the generic timetable is available here.


Durham University Schools' Science Festival

This week 40 Year 9 students took a trip to Durham University to be part of a science festival. The aim of the trip was to stimulate interest and encourage wider participation in science, and to inspire the next generation of scientists from the local area.

The teams of students took part in an engaging programme of workshops and demonstrations covering aspects of science including: Archaeology, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Mathematics, Physics, Psychology and Sports Science. These activities were delivered by very enthusiastic and knowledgeable scientists from the University.



The trip was very successful; the students were eager to take part in all of the activities and asked lots of intelligent questions. They were encouraged to consider the types of scientific careers they might like to pursue in the future and appreciate how science is important in the development of new technologies.

Mrs Dunn, Science Department



6th Form Notices


If you would like to keep up to date with what is going on in the Sixth Form please click on this link! w/c 18 April 2016.

Mrs Lennon, Operational Head of Sixth Form


Institue of Financial Services

Another outstanding year's results for Year 13 who have undertaken to sit the Intermediate Certificate in Personal Finance with the IFS.

For further details please click on the following link.  Institute of Financial Services - Summer 2016 Results.



An Inspector Calls

At the end of last term Dramatix performed a successful show of J.B. Priestley's play 'An Inspector Calls'. Dramatix is the school's drama group for Sixth Form students, which is organised by the students themselves, as an opportunity for post-GCSE theatre experience. Students involved were Will Turner, Seb Career, Hannah Booth, Juliet Hague, Christopher Chow, Chloe Cummings, Adam Douglas, Oscar Prendergast, Adam Churchman, Andre Pickering and also Nathan Harrison from the main school. Well done to all those involved for a great show and thank you to everyone who came to watch. Any profit from the performance is to be given to Acting for Others. a member charity, endorsed by Equity.  

Hannah Booth, Year 12


Music Department News


Durham Johnston School Music Festival

The School Music Festival will take place on the evening of Monday 27th June in James Hall and there will be three classes

Class 1 (Grade 1-3)                          Whinney Hill Music Cup                                                 6.00pm

Class 2 (Grade 4-5)                          Crossgate Moor Music Cup                                          6.45pm

Class 3 (Grade 6+)                            Durham Johnston School Music Cup                        7.45pm

The competition is open to all pupils who take music lessons outside school (including piano and singing) as well as those who receive tuition in school from Durham Music Service. Pieces, which must be solo (accompanied or unaccompanied), must last no longer than 3 minutes for Classes 1 and 2, and 4 minutes for Class 3. Pupils who play more than one instrument may enter a maximum of two different classes and the grades for each round refer to the standard of the piece performed and not to any formal qualification held.

For further details and an entry form please click here.


The Sage Young Musicians Programme.

We already have several Durham Johnston pupils involved in The Sage Young Musicians Programme and applications for the 2016/2017 course are now being accepted. The closing date for applications is Friday 29th April 2016 and for more details please click on the following link

Mr Holmes, Subject Leader for Music


Sports News

Despite the weather, the summer extra-curricular programme has started with practices for tennis, cricket, rounders and athletics all being well attended.

We are also reaching the climax of the basketball and football seasons.

On Tuesday our Year 7 football team were up against Dyke House in the semi-final of the County Cup. We produced another outstanding performance to lead 3 – 0 at half-time against a very strong team. We eased off slightly in the second half but still went on to win 4 – 1. This continues our unbeaten run this season and puts us into the County final which takes place next Tuesday at Maiden Castle.

Also on Tuesday our Year 11 team played their final league game against Whitworth. This was  a keenly fought game which we eventually won 2 – 1 – a fitting way to end school football for what has been an excellent team.

Finally on Tuesday our VIth form football team were at Maiden Castle in the league cup final. They faced a very strong team from St Robert’s who had already beaten us this season. We went 2 – 0 down before a great strike from Joe Severs got us back into the game just before half time. Unfortunately they proved too strong in the second half going on to win 4 – 1.


On Wednesday our Year 10 basketball team travelled to St Cuthbert’s for the Tyneside Schools final. This was a close game for the first three quarters but our quality eventually told in the last 10 minutes as we went on to become champions winning by 19 points.

Also on  Wednesday our Year 9 football team were in quarter-final action against Whitworth. This is always a close game. Unfortunately despite dominating possession we just couldn’t find a goal in the first half. Two second half goals for Whitworth saw them progress to the semi-final.

Last night our Year 10 basketball team had another final. This time is was the Bishop Auckland Schools competition. They faced St John’s and this proved to be an easier game than Wednesday as we opened up an early 12 – 0 lead. We then controlled the game eventually going on to win 59 - 22.

Good luck tonight to our VIth form rugby team who are at Emmanuel College for an end of season match.

Finally, I would like to thank Edward Jackson who is Director of Icarus Simulation who has kindly agreed to sponsor our Year 9 football team and provide a new kit (please see the photo below). They are a local flight simulator company based in Langley Park offering a range of packages.



Mr Hopper, Subject Leader for PE


North East Disability Sports Award Event

On Thursday evening the PE department attended the North East Disability Sports Award event as Durham Johnston had been nominated for The School Award, for promoting inclusion and disability sport to all pupils.



Out of nine schools nomintated,  Durham Johnston was one of three schools who were shortlisted.  The award panel spoke of the PE department's inclusive work and wanted people to know that for a mainstream school, the sporting provision for all children, especially those with a disability, was outstanding. The overall prize went to a Special School in Middlesbrough, but just to be nominated and shortlisted is a great achievement.

Mrs White, PE Department


Football Fixtures 2015-2016



Leases Bowl Roundabout Roadworks

The work on Leazes Bowl roundabout (next to the Prince Bishops car park) as part of the Durham City traffic improvement scheme, will start on 11 April 2016 and will last for approximately 25 weeks. 

The works will be carried out 7.00am - 7.00pm, subject to some on and off-peak restrictions.  We will aim to restrict the most disruptive work to off-peak hours, weekends and overnight, although there will be some significant unavoidable disruption and delays.

During part of the scheme the bus stops next to Leazes Bowl roundabout (at the end of Milburngate Bridge) will be closed and relocated to Claypath.  There will also be disruption to the buses that take routes over New Elvet Bridge later in the project.  Information about disruption to services will be available at Go North East and Arriva buses or at our public transport map and timetable finder.

Access will be maintained at all times for residents and businesses, however alternative routes and modes of transport should be used to avoid the area if possible.

The works will be carried out in five phases, starting with phases 1A and 1B which will be carried out concurrently over the course of one week. Diagrams of these phases are attached.

There will be an overlap between the beginning of the new works at Leazes Bowl and the end of the final phases of Gilesgate roundabout from 11 April 2016 until the beginning of May 2016.


For more detailed information please visit www.durham.gov.uk/leazesbowl or follow #leazesbowl​





Gilesgate Roundabout Roadworks:  Final Two Phases

Phase 7B

Works will take place on Sunday 1 –Thursday 5 May, from 8.00pm-6.00am. During this work the eastbound carriageway (towards the A1M) from the city centre, over the roundabout to the dual carriageway will be open. There will be a signed westbound diversion in place.

Much of the work will be noisy and may cause some vibration, however for safety reasons the work will have to be done at night. The duration of works has been minimised as far as possible, however it is essential for maintenance of the road.

We apologise in advance for any disruption and disturbance caused and thank you for your continued patience.

For all the latest information please visit www.durham.gov.uk/gilesgate or follow #gilesgate

There will be an overlap between the beginning of the new works at Leazes Bowl roundabout (next to the Prince Bishops car park) and the end of the final phases of Gilesgate roundabout from 11 April 2016 until the beginning of May 2016.


For more information on the Leazes Bowl works please visit www.durham.gov.uk/leazesbowl or follow #leazesbowl