Physical Education at Durham Johnston Comprehensive School

“We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”
George Bernard Shaw

At Durham Johnston we believe in giving all pupils, irrespective of their academic or physical ability, the opportunity to discover and develop their physical potential through a balanced and developmental programme of activities. We do so in the belief that physical education in a safe, supportive and challenging environment is a vital component in the development of children’s physical and emotional health and well being. This, we believe, includes qualities such as enjoyment, tolerance, co-operation and the development of expertise.


At Durham Johnston School, pupils have 2 hours of PE each week during Years 7, 8 and 9. During years 10 & 11 pupils attend Core PE 1 hour per week. In those PE lessons, pupils have the opportunity to enjoy and explore a range of games & fitness activities through understanding rules, learning new techniques, creativity, performing & engaging in an active healthy lifestyle.

The study of PE at KS3 & KS4 includes the following:

  • Outwitting opponents as in games activities
  • Accurate Replication of actions, phrases and sequences, as in gymnastic activities
  • Exploring and communicating ideas, concepts and emotions, as in dance activities
  • Performing at maximum levels in relation to speed, height, distance, strength or accuracy, as in athletic activities
  • Identifying and solving problems to overcome challenges of an adventurous nature, such as orienteering and outdoor activities
  • Exercising safely and effectively to improve health and wellbeing, as in fitness and health activities.


Pupils who love sport and PE have the opportunity to study at GCSE and BTEC in Year 10 and 11, and A Level in Year 12 and 13 to further their knowledge & understanding of the human body and movement. There are also excellent links with our local primary schools where our young people can demonstrate their Leadership skills by organising & hosting events (such as indoor athletics) for KS1 and KS2 pupils. These events are well received by our local primary Head Teachers. During our last Ofsted inspection we were hosting a primary school event the Lead Ofsted inspector reported “What is going on in the PE department today is beyond outstanding”.


As a dedicated PE department, throughout the year we run a huge variety of extracurricular activities. These are very well attended, and have helped us to build our outstanding reputation throughout both county and country. We regularly feature in "School Sports" magazine’s list of state sporting schools. In 2018 we were placed 14th in the country with most of the schools above us either grammar schools or single sex schools from the south. The feature article commented that "an indication of just how difficult it is to reach the list can be seen when you realise that just reaching the top 30 puts you in the top 1% of sporting schools in the country”. We have continued to be placed in the top 20 state schools in the following years.


Activities Offered


Many of these clubs are seasonal; you can keep up to date with the current term’s offer here.