We hope you have had a wonderful holiday with your family. We have started the half term with great energy and enthusiasm. I am always in awe at what we manage to fit into our days at the High School.
This week has been an exciting one for our Year 11 girls, as they have been finding out about the A-Level subjects, the enrichment opportunities and the nurturing support provided at Durham High Sixth Form. On Tuesday at our Sixth Form Open Evening, there was a tremendous buzz as the girls met the subject teachers and asked questions about the courses on offer. On Wednesday, they experienced a day in the life of our Sixth Form, enjoying taster sessions to help with the decision-making process of which subjects to choose. The girls enjoyed spending time in the Common Room, using the dedicated Sixth Form Diner and the Private Study areas. A reminder that you can apply for Sixth Form at www.dhsfg.org.uk/apply-for-sixth-form/. The deadline for applications is Friday 1 December 2023.
We held our Remembrance Assemblies in school on Friday morning. Staff and girls took time to honour the people who serve to defend our freedoms and keep us safe. The Senior Assembly considered the key themes of courage and selflessness. We also commemorated the 75th anniversary of the arrival of the SS Windrush and the contribution that 10,000 men and women from the Caribbean made, when they volunteered in the Second World War to help Britain and after the war with the rebuilding of the country.
Just before 11am the Pre-Prep and Prep girls and staff joined Senior Department for a poignant moment, where the whole school came together for a two-minute silence and listen to Rosalind (Y10) play the Last Post and Reveille.
Nursery and Reception children have enjoyed celebrating Diwali together this week. They have dressed in Indian dress, made clay diya lamps, and tasted Indian foods. They also listened with interest to the story of Rama and Sita.
Our Netball league fixtures began on Tuesday night for the U12 and U13 teams against Park View. The U12’s secured a fantastic 25-0 win, whilst the U13’s won their match 15-8. In a friendly game for the U15’s, despite losing the team performed well and their defensive play improved during the second half. Well done to all players and the players of the match, Esmee, Isla and Christina.
Congratulations to Anya (Y7) and Poppy (Y8) who swam at the North East Regional Championships in Sheffield at the weekend. Poppy swam in four events and achieved a PB in the 50m backstroke and finished 6th in the region in the 800m freestyle. Anya swam in six events achieving PB’s in all of them and also finished in the top six in three of her events. Fantastic swimming girls! Well done.
This week we hosted two Football Festivals for KS2 girls. On Thursday, our Y3 and Y4 teams were joined by St. Margaret’s School and Shincliffe Primary School and on Friday at the Y5 and 6 Festival we played against teams from St. Margaret’s, Shincliffe and Nevilles Cross. It was wonderful to see so many girls enjoying competitive football and the skill level was very impressive.
There are many children suffering in our world, who are in great need of humanitarian aid. At the end of November, we will be arranging a collection across school to send off to a humanitarian aid charity, chosen by the Sixth Form. Once they have decided on their charity, we will let you know and send details of how you can contribute, should you wish to.
We are excited for the upcoming Parents and Friends Christmas Fayre, which will be taking place on Friday 24 November from 2.30pm – 4.30pm. We would be extremely grateful for any donations of tombola prizes, bottles, chocolates, new toiletries or beauty products, unwanted toys or gifts, cakes, biscuits and savoury treats. Please bring any non-perishable donations on Monday 20 or Tuesday 21 November. Food donations should only be brought in on the day of the fayre.
In addition, if you are a business, or a family who would like to donate a fantastic raffle prize or gift experience, this would also be gratefully received. These can be dropped into Main Reception. Thank you, as always, for your support and we hope to see you at the Christmas Fayre on 24 November.
October Half Term Feedback
Following consultation last year with staff and parents, we trialled a two-week October half term. We said we would review this in readiness of setting our term dates for 2024-25. We have produced illustrative examples of what the term dates would look like with, and without, a two week half term in October. This has been emailed to you. Please could you complete the short questionnaire at October Half Term Review by early next week to aid with the decision-making process? We will then publish the confirmed dates in due course.
Scams and Cyber security related to Fees
We are constantly monitoring our cyber security and listening to others in education where attacks and scams are increasingly prevalent. We want to alert you to one particular threat, where scam emails are being sent to parents of schools offering a discount for advance payment or for paying several terms in advance. These will quote a new bank reference and account, which is, of course, that of the scammers.
While we may contact you in the next few weeks with alternative options to pay in advance, we have no plans to change our bank details or bank. These details are included on all invoices we issue and remain unchanged. If you receive any email purporting to change bank details, please do not follow any links in the email and contact us on [email protected] or call reception and we will aim to help.