Durham Johnston Comprehensive School

Dare to be wise



Friday Bulletin

Friday Bulletin Archive

2018 (38)

November (5)

October (3)

September (5)

August (1)

July (3)

June (4)

May (4)

April (2)

March (5)

February (2)

January (4)

2017 (42)

December (4)

November (4)

October (3)

September (5)

August (1)

July (3)

June (4)

May (4)

April (3)

March (4)

February (2)

January (5)

2016 (37)

December (3)

November (4)

October (2)

September (5)

July (3)

June (2)

May (4)

April (3)

March (4)

February (3)

January (4)

2015 (37)

December (3)

November (4)

October (3)

September (5)

July (3)

June (4)

May (4)

April (2)

March (3)

February (3)

January (3)

2014 (37)

December (3)

November (4)

October (4)

September (4)

July (3)

June (4)

May (1)

April (12)

February (2)

Dates For Your Diary

  • Term ends for October half term week on Friday 21 October and begins on Monday 31 October 
  • Year 7 Parents' Information Programme (Maths and Science), Wednesday 23 November - 6.00 p.m.
  • Year 12 Parents' Consultation Evening, Monday 28 November 4.00 - 6.00 p.m.
  • Year 13 Parents' Consultation Evening, Monday 5 December 4.00 - 6.00 p.m.
  • Christmas Concert, Thursday 8 December, James Hall - 6.30 and 7.30 p.m.
  • Annual Christmas Carol Service, Durham Cathedral, Friday 16 December
  • Term ends for the Christmas and New Year holiday on Friday 16 December
  • Term begins Tuesday 3 January 2017
  • Year 7 Parents' Consultation Evening, Monday 16 January 4.00 - 6.00 p.m
  • Year 9 Options Evening, Monday 13 February, 6.00 - 8.00 p.m.


Headteacher's Message

Dear Parents and Carers,

Thank you for your support over the past seven weeks. On your behalf I have thanked the staff for their efforts both in the classroom and with all of the extra events that take place within and around the school day. Just a quick look at all of the events that have taken place that have been advertised in the Friday bulletin, and a glace at all of the extra-curricular activities that take place each week give an impression of how busy life can be at school.

 There are lots of individuals who help our students at school, not just our teachers. We have a team of lunchtime assistants, cleaners, kitchen staff, administrators and site managers who all do their part in ensuring that systems are effective and that the site is clean, tidy and safe. A team of staff work together to ensure that the Festival of Culture is successful. Other staff ensure that our IT is working, governors support the work of the school, and colleagues from the LA support school leaders and year leaders across the course of the year. And there are many others that I have not mentioned too.

 It has been a busy half-term and I do wish the students a well-deserved rest, and thank our staff and supporters for their work.

Yours sincerely,



Michael Wardle, Headteacher


School Crossing Patrol

Durham County Council have informed us that a school crossing patrol will be in force, commencing Monday 31 October 2016 from 7.30 a.m. - 8.40 a.m. and 2.35 p.m. until 3.20 p.m. situated at the traffic island between the school and the blue pedestrian bridge.


Applications for Sixth Form 2017

May we remind students who are considering applying for a place in Durham Johnston's Sixth Form for September for 2017 that the deadline for receipt of applications is 5 November 2016.



Goodnight Everyone with Chris Haughton

On Tuesday 11 October, 425 primary aged children from across Durham County came into school for a Durham Book Festival for Schools event with Chris Haughton, the multi award winning picture book maker of A Bit Lost, Oh No, George! and Shh! We Have a Plan.

Pupils joined us from; Evenwood Primary School, Langley Park Primary School, Cassop Primary School, Oakley Cross Primary School, Sugar hill Primary School, Framwellgate Moor Primary, St. Godric’s Primary School and Shincliff Primary School.

The lively interactive session included live drawing on giant paper, stomping, dancing and exciting storytelling and was great fun!

Chris introduced his brand new picture book, Goodnight Everyone, the story of Little Bear, who despite the yawns of his woodland friends, from a tiny mouse to a great big bear, is certainly not feeling sleepy…for now! This book is sure to be a future bedtime classic and perfect for children under 7.

Chris also spent time in our Art Department looking at pupils’ work and talking with 6th form art students interested in illustration and picture book making.

Layla's Room by Theatre Centre


 Image Credit: Sarah London Photography


On Monday 17th October, over 500 pupils from years 7 & 8 attended performances of Layla’s Room by Theatre Centre.

The production focused on themes around representations of women and girls in the media, everyday sexism and was intended to equip students to better recognise and challenge sexist behaviour.

Collected from a bespoke national survey, the voices of a thousand UK teens were brought to life in Layla. Their ambitions, concerns, role-models and regrets were woven together by award-winning Sabrina Mahfouz and Theatre Centre, offering a hard hitting yet hopeful story of how girls just wanna have fun–damental human rights.

Theatre Centre empowers young leadership through the arts, supporting and transforming children and young people by enriching their learning and leadership potential with theatre productions, creative projects and resources.


Fairytales Gone Bad with Take Off Festival



On Tuesday 18th October, Durham Johnston hosted two performances of Fairytales Gone Bad in association with Take Off Festival; England’s leading theatre festival for children and young people.

St Margaret’s and Neville’s Cross Primary Schools brought full year groups from Yr6 to comedy club style performances featuring a mysterious vaudeville storyteller; Joseph Coelho.

Durham Johnston film club pupils also joined both performances and discovered the true tale of Cinderella, where she dies and becomes a zombie and falls in love with a vampire prince!


360o Multi Media Dome Experience day



Classes from across the school enjoyed curriculum related films in the 360o multimedia dome on Wednesday 19th October.

Geographers, physicists, historians and students of ethics & philosophy watched curriculum related 360o immersive films as well as pupils from our Connect 4 Lunch Club and Film Club.

Miss Charlton, Director of Resources


Addressing the ICT Skills Gap

In July a group of our Year 8 students visited the Sjøvoll Science Learning Centre along with other students from the region.

Their task was to look at how to promote careers in ICT amongst their peers.  Research has identified a future fundamental skills gap in ICT, particularly within the North East region.  Durham County Council are working closely with Dynamo North East to address this issue; focusing on 3 key themes;

1.         Encouraging more young people to consider a career in ICT

2.         Encouraging more young people to consider an apprenticeship as a career route

3.         Address the gender imbalance and encourage more females into the ICT sector

DCC and Dynamo aimed to address these issues welcoming the input of young people.  This was essential as experience shows that young people understand the way their peers think and their input is paramount to the success of the project. 

Throughout the day students had to undertake tasks and think of how to promote Careers in IT for young people and come up with a name.  We were notified this week that our school won and the name our students chose of I C Tech will be used to promote the scheme!

A massive well done to Nathalie Einbeck, Gabriel McColl, Jasmine Mountain, Ryan Tunbull and special congratulations go to Jasmine for picking the name! 

Miss Forbes, Subject Leader for Computing


International School Award Event

Last Friday Mr Wardle and I attended Tyneside Theatre to collect Durham Johnston's International School Award. It was a fantastic event where schools from all over the north of England joined together to celebrate achieving International Status.

The event was a fantastic forum for schools to discuss the opportunities that we have to help our students become involved in cultural projects. The guest speaker, Tori James, delivered an inspirational speech to teachers and students alike about how to overcome fears in order to achieve what you may believe to be impossible.

Durham Johnston is proud to be an International School and will continue to explore every opportunity for our students to discover the world around them.

Mrs Jackson, MFL Department



Music Notices

School Christmas Concert – Thursday 8th December, James Hall 

First Half (6.30pm) to include Wind Band, Junior Orchestra, Junior Choir and selected soloists.

Second Half (7.30pm) to include Big Band, Senior Choir, Senior Orchestra, Chamber Choir and selected soloists.

Tickets for each part of this concert may be purchased from the Music Department.  To ensure that as many parents, relatives and friends as possible can attend this event, we would encourage you, please, to purchase tickets only for the half in which your child is performing? There will be some pupils who are performing in both halves, in which case audience members will need to purchase tickets for both parts of the concert. Please note that pupils who have siblings in the other half will be able to attend that half of the concert without a ticket.

We shall ask everyone who does not have a ticket for the second half to vacate the hall at the end of the first half and then the those with tickets for the second half will be admitted in time for the second half to start at about 7.30pm. Tickets will be £2.50 or £2 concessions for each half and please note that these will not be for sale on the door. Payment by cash or cheque, payable to ‘Durham Johnston School’. These will be on sale from Monday 14th November.

Mr Holmes, Subject Leader for Music



Oxford and Cambridge Preparation

On Monday  over sixty students from eight other County Durham schools joined in a session on preparing for interviews.  The speaker was Zoe Triston, who was previously a student here, and who is now working at Trinity College.  

To date 44 of our students have applied for university entrance next year.

Mr McArdle, Assistant Head, Director of Post-16



Sixth Form Weekly Notices

If you would like to keep up to date with what is going on in the Sixth Form please click on the following link.  31 October 2016

Please click on the following link for updated information about Sixth Form Societies.

Mrs Lennon, Operational Head of Sixth Form

9th Annual Durham Swimathon

The annual Swimathon is a joint venture between Durham County Council and the Rotary Club of Durham and this year will take place on the 18 and 19 and November.  The event will raise funds for the Mayor of Durham's nominated Charity (Veterans at Ease), the Rotary Club’s two nominated charities (Cheesy Waffles Youth Project and Downs Syndrome North East), and participants' nominated chosen causes.  Over the past eight years local swimmers have raised nearly £60,000.

If you are a keen swimmer and would like to give your support to this event please click on the following links for further details and an application form.





Sports News

Firstly the deadline has now passed for applications for the Malaga Sports trips 2017. We have had a huge response with over 130 students applying from Year 7 & 8. We will be in touch with parents after half-term regarding a draw to organise numbers for each trip. We will of course endeavour to take as many children as possible.

On Monday our Year 7 & 8 rugby teams travelled to Harton for tournaments. Both teams performed very well as our Year 7’s won one and drew one and our year 8’s won one and lost one.

Also on Monday our Year 7 and Year 8 netball teams were at Durham High for netball matches. These are always  challenging matches and we battled well to win one and lose two.

The netball continued on Tuesday as our Year 7 – 10 teams all took on St Bede’s. These games were played in an excellent spirit and closely fought. We won 2 matches, drew 1 and lost a close game by only 1 goal.

Tuesday was a busy night as our Year 7, 9 & 11 football teams were in league action against Teesdale. We dominated all three games winning 5 – 3, 6 - 0 and 7 – 1.

Finally on Tuesday our U15 boys and girls table tennis teams were at Belmont for the Durham City table-tennis championships. The girls dominated the opposition become champions without losing a game. The boys competition was slightly closer and despite a close game with Framwellgate we played some excellent table-tennis to win. Both teams now go forward to the County Championships in March.

On Wednesday our U13 girls football team travelled to Laurence Jackson in the second round of the English Schools Cup. We played some excellent football to win 6 – 0.

Also on Wednesday our VIth form football team took on St Thomas More. Unfortunately we had a poor first half going 4 – 0 down. We played much better after the break but eventually lost 4 – 1.

On Thursday our Y9 and Y10 netball teams played Durham High. We won 2 and lost 2 after an excellent night of netball. Our Year 10 rugby team played Thorpe Academy in a friendly match. They were an excellent team but we never gave up eventually losing 29 – 19.

Finally good luck tonight to Year 7 & 8 rugby teams who are playing a local derby against St Leonard’s and our U13 girls football team who are playing Biddick in the County Cup.

Mr Hopper, Subject Leader for PE


Ski Visit 2017 - Final Instalment Reminder

Please may I remind parents that the final instalment for next year's ski visit is due on Friday 4 November.

Thank you.

Mrs Hopper, Ski Visit Co-ordinator


PE Department Durham Johnston Football Fixtures for 2016-2017