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

  • Friday 7 July - Music for a Summer Evening - 7.00 p.m.
  • Wednesday 12 July - 23rd Annual Sports Presentation Evening, Ramside Hall 7.00 - 11.00 p.m. 
  • Wellbeing Week - 17th - 20th July
  • Thursday 20 July - school breaks for the Summer holidays 
  • AS / A2 examination results published on Thursday 17 August.  A2 results will be available in school from 8.00 a.m. and AS results from 10.00 a.m.
  • GCSE examination results published on Thursday 24 August 2017 and will be available in school from 10.00 a.m.
  • Wednesday 6 September - schools re-opens for the start of the new academic year



Headteacher's Message

Dear Parents and Carers,

It has been another busy week at the Johnston, as we pack in as many events as we can before the summer break. Year 10 have been involved in business events in the morning, and Years 7-9 have had sex and relationships education sessions this week. 'I'm a Johnstonian get me out of here' was a hit this week, and the now annual Colour Run raised £500 in memory of Miss Bittlestone's for her chosen charity. I am looking forward to Music for a Summer evening today. Just listing these events reminds me of the rich and varied provision here.

Enjoy reading about these events in this week's bulletin.

Yours sincerley,

Michael Wardle, Headteacher


End of Term Arrangements

The Summer term ends on Thursday 20 July.   Buses will arrive in school at the earlier time of 1.00 to transport students home.


UCAS Preparation

Year 12 students have been busy exploring their options after A level.  Last Thursday all of them visited the UCAS conference in Newcastle to meet university representatives.  This week many parents attended an evening with presentations from school and Durham University staff.  Students have also been visiting open days at the universities they are considering applying to.

Mr McArdle, Assistant Head (Director, Post-16)


Durham Johnston Chemists Amongst the Best in the Country

The Cambridge Chemistry Challenge is a 90-minute exam paper aimed at stretching and challenging students interested in chemistry.  The challenge is set by an experienced team of teachers and university chemists and is designed to be accessible to Year 12 students but take them significantly beyond the A Level syllabus and encourage them to think about science in the way they would at university. 

On Thursday 22nd June, nine intrepid Durham Johnston year 12 chemists took on the challenge, along with 7056 other pupils from 510 schools across the country…

Dependent upon where their results ranked amongst the national cohort in 2017, challengees were given one of four awards. The copper certificate was awarded to the top 59.8 % of entrants nationally. The silver award was given to the top 23.3 % of entrants nationally. The gold award was given to the top 8.5 % of entrants nationally. Finally, the super-special Roentgenium award was awarded to the top 0.78 % of challengees for across the country.

The results from the Durham Johnston chemists were truly remarkable! Incredibly, two pupils achieved the copper award and two pupils achieved the silver award.  Furthermore, special mention has to be made of Simon Timmins, a gold award winner, as well as Yuriy Tumarkin and Matthew Edge who were both awarded the super-special Roentgenium award. Only 55 pupils from across the whole country were given the Roentgenium award and the fact that two pupils from Durham Johnston achieved this is both hugely impressive and extremely special.  Moreover, Matthew Edge was scored the joint 4th highest score from the 7056 entrants from across the country; a supreme result! 

As a result of being in the top 0.78 % of national results both Yuriy and Matthew have been invited to Cambridge to a residential camp in August of this year. The residential camp is free of charge and will give them the opportunity to delve further into the wonderful world of chemistry and experience life an as Cambridge undergraduate.  They will stay in halls in St Catherine’s college and be led through a series of seminars and labs by some leading academics from the University of Cambridge.  A lovely prize for their outstanding achievement.

The Cambridge Chemistry Challenge is an extremely difficult paper, so all the pupils that volunteered to take part demonstrated a fantastic commitment and interest towards chemistry, plus achieved some impressive results. Huge congratulations has been passed on to all. The Durham Johnston chemistry department look forward to the 2018 challenge!

Dr Clay, Science Department


Science Careers Presentation

On Wed 28thJune we had our third science careers presentation this year.  Jeremy and Rachel Kendal from the University of Durham gave an interesting presentation on Anthropology.  It became clear that this discipline draws upon knowledge of a number of academic areas taught in school. The presentation included a number of references to topics taught both at GCSE and at A level, such as evolution of humans for example.  We would like to thank Jeremy and Rachel for giving up their time to come and talk to the students.

Dr Bolton, Subject Leader for Biology


Year 9 Go MaD at Newcastle Uni

On Monday, 14 of our prospective Medics and Dentists travelled to Newcastle University to spend a day finding out the realities of studying medicine or dentistry. Students were put in plaster casts, immobilised on back boards,  intubated patients (or dummies at least), made wax teeth and had a master class on teethbrushing!

One student said “The medicine and dentistry trip was interesting and informative. We did some practical work which was fun and gave you an insight into some of the basic things you learn in medicine and dentistry. On the whole it was a great trip”

Hopefully we will see the students involved seeing patients of their own some day!

Ms Clay, Science Department


I'm a Johnstonian Get Me Out of Here

I’m a Johnstonian get me out of here 2017:  Just your usual Tuesday at DJCS then? Erm…….. NO!

What did we think would be a good event to host for our end of term farewell – I’m a Johnstonian, that’s what!  So props were bought, paddling pools blown up, vats of slime and spaghetti were made, things were poured into jars that would make your toes curl and finally a 3 course meal that only the hardiest of stomachs could take – And what a huge success it was!




Wow, what can I say, these events just keep getting better and better!  We are blown away by the support shown today.  For those involved in the trials… I take my hat off to you – absolutely fantastic.  The audience, well they are up for it as always and the atmosphere was fantastic.  And a heartfelt thank you to the sixth form team (& Mrs Mathieson) – you make these crazy ideas a reality!!


Miss Forbes, Subject Leader for Computing


Charity Five-a-Side Football

A charity five-a-side football tournament has been organised by two pupils in Year 8.   The tournament will take place at lunchtime on Friday 14 July and is open to all pupils to enter. Pupils must enter as a team and at a cost of £1.00 per player.  The fee for spectators is 50p.

It all happens on the 3G pitch.  Enter your team as soon as you can!

Mr Simpson, Head of Year 8


Warhammer Finals

After storming through both the heats and the semi finals,  Durham Johnston's Warhammer Age of Sigmar team had a clear victory at this weeks finals. We won 12 out of 12 games against tough competition as well as winning most sporting team and best general for the event. We also have an army which will remain on display in a  cabinet at Warhammer World itself after coming 2nd in the best army catagory. Overall, the tournament was a great success and we wish the school's warhammer club every success in the future now that we have left sixth form.

Tom Wilkinson, Connor Toghill, Zak Beattie, Jamie Watkins 




Students will perform a short adaptation of Oliver on Thursday 13 July from 6.00 until 6.45 p.m.  Pupils who are involved with the production should be in school for 5.15 p.m.

Ms Ayrey, Subject Leader for Drama


Food Bank Appeal

The Durham Cathedral Food Bank team were absolutely overwhelmed with the response from Year 10 to their Advent Appeal and they have been in touch to see if the community here at Durham Johnston School would be willing to support their Summer Holiday Appeal.  The school holidays place extra pressure on many families and providing food for children is a constant challenge in some homes.

We are therefore appealing to pupils, parents and carers  'Whilst you are away donate some food items for those who have to stay'.

Donations* can be brought to the Music Department at any point between Monday 10th and Tuesday 18th July and members of the Durham Food Bank team will come into school to receive the donations on Wednesday 19th July.

Here is the list of urgent requirements; sugar, tinned ham, tinned fish, tinned fruit, tinned rice pudding, tinned tomatoes, soup, custard, tinned spaghetti, pasta sauce, sponge puddings, tinned meaty pasta, snacks and nibbles.



Music Notices

10 Annual School Music Festival

Congratulations to all finalists who performed in the 2017 School Music Festival. Our adjudicator for the Evening was Mrs Norris, Deputy Head of Durham Music Service and we were very grateful for her sensitive and affirming comments. It was a lovely evening and it was a pleasure to hear so many pupils perform. Many thanks to all parents and colleagues who also supported the event. The results were as follows.


The Whinney Hill Cup


Most Promising - Seb Mason (Guitar) -Memoriad – S. Mason

Runner Up - Emma Apperley (Trumpet) - Trumpet Tune – J. Clarke

Winner - Jasmine Colman (Voice) - If I only had a brain – H. Arlen


The Crossgate Moor Cup



Most Promising - Eve Lindsey (Violin) - Pastorale – O. Rieding

Runner Up - Naomi Erlebach (Trombone) - Let’s call the whole thing off – G. Gershwin

Runner Up - Jed Martin (Tuba) - The Elephant – C. Saint-Saens

Winner - Joe Sollis (Piano) - 60s Swing – E. Vis


The Durham Johnston Cup


Most Promising - Zoe Clark (Clarinet) - Swinging Shepherd Blues – M. Koffman arr. O. Ledbury


Runner Up - Felix Collins (Guitar) - Prelude from Lute Suite – J. S. Bach

Runner Up - Josie Moir (Flute) - Study in E flat – E. Prill

Winner - Owen Morris (Euphonium) - Whirlwind – P. Graham


2016 to 2017

As we rapidly move towards the end of another academic year, may I take this opportunity to thank all pupils, parents and colleagues for their support which has really made another year of music making here at Durham Johnston very special. I would like to say special congratulations to those who are just starting out on their musical journey, who can now play a short melody on an instrument they have never picked up before last September, to those who have performed in public, either in an ensemble or as a soloist for this first time and finally to those who had the chance to perform with some of the best instrumentalists in the world as we joined forces with The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. It's been a great year.


...and just a few final things from me.


Please ensure that all musical instruments are taken home at the end of this term and in order to help families plan for 2017 to 2018 here is our rehearsal schedule for next academic year.


Tuesday - Junior Orchestra and Wind Band

Wednesday - Junior Choir and Senior Choir

Thursday - Senior Orchestra

Friday - Big Band


Please note that rehearsals are from 2.45 to 3.45 and these and lessons from Durham Music Service start in the w/b Monday 11th September.

Mr Holmes – Subject leader for Music



Sixth Form Notices    

If you would like to keep up to date with what is going on in the Sixth Form please click on the following links:  

Sixth Form Notices week beginning 10 July 2017

Addressing FAQ's - Year 12 Students - May, June and July

Information regarding Sixth Form Societies can be found on the following link  Sixth Form Societies.          

Mrs Lennon, Operational Head of Sixth        


Sports News

The real winner this week has been the weather with several competitions cancelled. The Year 7 Miniathlon and county cup cricket were both rained off on Tuesday.

However a friendly Year 7 girls basketball match against Whitworth did go ahead. Our Year 7 girls are an excellent team and totally dominated this game winning 58 – 0.

A cycling club event at Middlesbrough Velodrome on Thursday was also cancelled due to rain.

However our “Colour Run” charity event in memory of Miss Bittlestone did go ahead and was an amazing event raising over £500 for charity.

Today we have several teams representing Durham Central at the Durham County Summer Games at Maiden Castle – good luck to all of them.

Also on Sunday nine of our U13 boys tennis team are travelling down to Wimbledon and have tickets for court 1 on Monday to watch some world class tennis.

Finally a reminder that our 23rd Annual Sports Presentation Evening takes place next Wednesday 12 July and will be held in the Bishops Suite, Ramside Hall starting at 7.00 p.m.


Year 13 Triple Jumper Chosen to Represent GB in Italy

We are delighted to share the news that Emily Gargan, Year 13 has been selected to represent Great Britian for triple jump at the Mannheim Gala in Germany and the European Junior Championships in Grosseto, Italy. In order to be selected, Emily had to jump over 13.00 metres which she achieved at the Loughborough International British Athletics first major event of the outdoor season, jumping a personal best of 13.03m.  In Mannheim she finished in third place. Emily will now travel to Italy with the GB squad on the 18th July.  This is an exceptional achievement and we wish Emily every success for the forthcoming event in Italy.

Mr Hopper, Subject Leader for PE


Ski Trip 2018 Reminder

The deadline for handing in the 3rd ski instalment was Monday 3rd July.  There are still a large number of payments outstanding and I would be grateful if the cheques could be handed in on Monday 10th July.

Mrs Hopper, Ski Visit Co-ordinator 



Neville's Cross - Traffic Signal Refurbishments - Phase B

Phase B of the highway works taking place at Neville’s Cross, Durham City is scheduled to start next week (Monday 10 July).

During this phase 4 way temporary traffic lights will be introduced as we begin to replace the existing traffic lights and cables.  Lane closures will be in place on the northbound carriageway of the A167 and the A690 travelling towards Durham. During phase B we are advising people to allow extra time for their journey or to use an alternative route, especially in peak times.

The web page This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it./redir.aspx?C=LXSBcGblI0St4YT1jOpu2Q7rsz0wyNQI894fGQpbpL2PCmPcMUsDbInHojBQTINY9MbaYG1Mk_A.&URL=http%3a%2f%2fwww.durham.gov.uk%2fnevillescross" target="_blank">www.durham.gov.uk/nevillescross will be updated on Monday and we will continue to circulate updates at key stages to keep you informed.