Head's Letter to Parents
Dear Johnston families,
It has been another exciting and successful year here at the Johnston. Pupils and staff have worked very hard since last September. Last September, of course, there had been no general election, it had not been long since the Brexit vote, and among headteachers there was talk of new accountability measures and the possibility of grammar schools. A year on and much of the educational and political landscape has shifted, and we look forward again to the summer break, wondering what the new academic year may bring. Of course, here at the Johnston, we will continue to commit ourselves to excellent provision in classrooms, and a wide educational experience for our students. This week, well being week, is a prime example of staff organising events which widen student experience, and develop additional skills. I am sure that our students had a lot of fun.
It remains for me to wish you all a great summer break. Thank you once again for your support for our school, and I look forward to seeing you all again in the new academic year.
The best of wishes,
Michael Wardle, Headteacher
Wellbeing Week has now ended and I am pleased about how the events have been received by our students and how enthused they have been all week.
The largest event was on Tuesday when firefighters joined 200 pupils to run a busy day of activities focussing on water safety and physical fitness.
County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service (CDDFRS) sent a fire and swift water rescue team crew, a number of vehicles and appliances as well as their health and fitness advisor to put all of Durham Johnston’s year 8 pupils through their paces.
· A look at the flood response unit and a chance to try on some of the rescue equipment (including dry suits) and opportunity to use throwlines
· A look at the swift water rescue boat and a fire engine
· A game where participants practiced hitting targets with water jets
· A fitness session, which included a warm up, and a competition timing pupils to run out fire hoses.
· Children also got the chance to go up in the fire service aerial ladder platform to take in views over Durham.
· A chip pan fire demonstration showing the ‘explosive’ result if tackled incorrectly.
The event was organised by John Jameson, Assistant District Manager, Durham District, Durham, Spennymoor and Crook fire stations and our thanks go to him and the rest of their colleagues who provided a day of fun and interesting activities for our Year 8’s to get involved with.
CDDFRS also offer a FREE ‘Safe and Wellbeing Visit’ where they will advise you on fire safety in your home and help make your home safer for you and your family. For more information, please click on the followinglink:
For more information on County Durham and Darlington Fire & Rescue Service, visit the website www.ddfire.gov.uk
Follow the Service on Twitter www.twitter.com/CDDFRS
Other activities included having ‘If You Care you Share’ Foundation who worked with groups of our Year 9 students and tackled the difficult subject of teenage depression, anxiety and suicide. Yr9 also were involved in an event organised and presented by our 6th Form Pride group so thanks go to them for their efforts to promote a tolerant school community.
Year 7 students spent the day tackling Anti-Social Behaviour and the effects on the community with Durham Constabulary. Healthy Lifestyles Event for Year 7-9 which were all carousel activities focussing on Wellbeing. At Johnston, our aim is for our young people to gain self-knowledge and we aim to produce self-reflective, confident and articulate young people at ease in the world. We work to make our community safe and welcoming, happy and supportive. We offer education to meet each student’s needs. We share a common commitment to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people.
All year groups spent half a day participating in a variety of sporting activities such as tennis, football and dance taught by couple of expert coaches who were supported by members of school staff. There were also sporting activities within the Durham Fire and Rescue Service event.
In addition, Yr7 and Yr9 students had the opportunity to handle creepy crawlies, an owl, frogs and exotic snakes. Yr9 were also involved in ‘Show Racism the Red Card’, which was supported this year by the former Sunderland legend Gary Bennett.
Finally, to complete the week we had live music from ‘My Forever’. With a growing reputation and legion of fans, My Forever have been making waves and turning heads throughout the UK and beyond for the past two years. Formed in Leeds, the Alternative British pop rock unit take emotion, honest lyrics and heavy vibes to a completely new level. The band released their single Clarity, which reached No. 1 on MTV Rock TV’s Most Wanted Rock Chart. Check out a couple of their links below:
Here are the links to their website and social media:
Website - https://www.myforeverofficial.com/
Twitter - https://twitter.com/myforeverband
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/myforeverofficial/
A selection of photographs taken during Wellbeing Week will be published in the first bulletin in September.
Mr Kennedy, Wellbeing Week Coordinator
Please see below the publication dates for GCSE and A Level examination results, and the times they will be available for collection in school.
AS / A2 examination results will be published on Thursday 17 August.
GCSE examination results will be published on Thursday 24 August 2017
May we take the opportunity to remind students and parents that for reasons of security the school is not able to give out examinations results by email or telephone.
If for any reason you are unable to collect your results in person you may either:
After studying the play Kes in lessons, three Year 7 English classes received a visit from Ridgeway Falconry on Friday 14th July. They enjoyed learning about various birds of prey, including a very sinister looking vulture. Other highlights were: all forming a human tunnel for the eagle to fly through and all of the students being able to hold the owls. Barney the Barn Owl was a particular favourite!After studying the play Kes in lessons, three Year 7 English classes received a visit from Ridgeway Falconry on Friday 14th July. They enjoyed learning about various birds of prey, including a very sinister looking vulture. Other highlights were: all forming a human tunnel for the eagle to fly through and all of the students being able to hold the owls. Barney the Barn Owl was a particular favourite!After studying the play Kes in lessons, three Year 7 English classes received a visit from Ridgeway Falconry on Friday 14th July. They enjoyed learning about various birds of prey, including a very sinister looking vulture. Other highlights were: all forming a human tunnel for the eagle to fly through and all of the students being able to hold the owls. Barney the Barn Owl was a particular favourite!
Mrs Clark, Subject Leader for English
Many thanks to all staff and students who have contributed so generously to the summer food bank appeal. A particular thanks to the school gardening club, who have generously donated half of their profits from this term to the appeal.
On Wednesday morning two representatives from the Food Bank came into school to receive the donation of food and when it had been checked in at the collection centre later in the day it was found to weigh a staggering 137.3 kg. The food bank assured us that this will really help many families over the coming weeks.
Mr Holmes, Subject Leader for Music
The biology department is pleased to announce the results of the Intermediate Biology Olympiad. We had 3 Gold awards, 6 Bronze awards, 6 Highly commended and 2 Commended out of 31 participants. This is a record number of students who have voluntarily signed up for this challenging event and we are delighted with their commitment to biology! Well done everyone - we are looking forward to the next challenge.
The photographs below show students who received their certificates for their participation in the BBO from our 3 biology classes.
Miss Murphy, Biology Department
On Monday 10th July four students from Year 9 and Year 10 represented the school in the annual Durham Secondary Maths Challenge. The team were against 20 other teams from the local area and had to go head to head with them in a puzzle round, relay, group challenge, and games round. As a result of their effort was to win the overall competition by an impressive one hundred points! Part of the challenge also involved preparing a poster on 'shapes of constant width' in advance, which the team also won 1st place for.
Congratulations to the whole team!
Mr Cooke, Mathematics Department
Thank you to all students and staff who supported the recent charity football match organised by Year 8 students . The event raised a total of £55.00 which will be donated to Macmillan Cancer charity.
Eleanor Robinson in Year 10 has been nominated for a National Netball Goalden Globe at Birmingham NCC on Saturday 16th September. Her category is Sport Experiences Young Volunteer Award.
If you would like to support Eleanor to get as many votes as possible before the closing date on Friday 24th July please click on the following link:
Mrs Bell, Head of Year 10
Massive congratulations to Annand who won the house competition! Your name will be etched on the Bittlestone cup – well done!
The competition was close this year, only four points separated all 4 houses!! Just shows, every point counts.
As a reward Annand won an afternoon of fun (thankfully in the sun!) – we had bubble football competitions, an ice-cream van, and field games. We turned the hall into a cinema with popcorn and candyfloss - and on the big-screen… The Goonies (yes, such an 80’s classic!).
It was a fantastic event which was enjoyed by all who took part. A lovely way to end the year for the house team.
Miss Forbes, Enrichment co-ordinator
The DofE team would like to extend huge congratulations to the Gold Final and Practice teams who have successfully completed their respective expeditions this week, battling blazing sun, fog, thunder, blisters, midges and sunburn to successfully arrive in Alston, to a well deserved fish and chip supper!
As it is the end of the year, we would also like to thank all the parents and staff who have supported the scheme over the course of the year. We have had out biggest year yet, and next year looks to be even bigger!
Ms Clay, Mr Briggs, Mr Smith, Mr Carss and the rest of the DofE Team
A fantastic week of sports competitions, beach volleyball, football, Danish longball, tennis, handball & beat the teacher. Six teams named after countries competed every day for points, we also had quizzes and games to keep up the competitive element. Points awarded for winning, points awarded for gamesmanship, room inspections & points deducted for poor time keeping or other reasons, keeping everyone on their toes!
The high quality displayed in each tournament was a joy to watch as was the team spirit within each country. There were 12 leaders from year 10 & 11 who worked hard all week, culminating in orchestrating a grand finale of DJ's got talent. Each team taking their turn on stage to wow staff with their productions.
A lot was packed into five days including a day out to the Water park which everyone absolutely loved. We ended with a closing ceremony where our leaders spoke eloquently about their teams and how they had all bonded through sport. We left after presenting the winning country, England with medals. The 72 pupils from Durham Johnston were a credit to the school, themselves and their parents.
Mrs Hopper, PE Department