Come and play at one of our Outdoor Tots sessions

We have had an extremely busy, but exciting week at the High School, with the lead up to the Senior Department Speech Day at Glow last night. Earlier in the week it was wonderful to meet the parents of our Pre-Prep and Prep girls at the Parent Information Evenings. Thank you to all those parents who were able to come and meet the class teachers. It really does help build those relationships between home and school.

Then it was the turn of Speech Day to take centre stage, and what a tremendous occasion it was. All pupils looked extremely smart and it was wonderful to see so many achievements being celebrated. The theme was ‘Opportunity, Resilience and Success’ and we were delighted to have Lisa Eaton in attendance as our guest speaker. Lisa, who is a marketing expert and a strong advocate for women in business, shared her career story so far, helping to inspire our girls to realise that they can achieve anything.

We changed the format this year, and it was lovely to hear from the pupils themselves, as they shared their best experiences from the last academic year. Thank you to Mille S, Lyla R, Yasmeen H, Hannah S, Emily F, Anna S, Lucy A, Isla T, Harriet L, Ohmle S, Isla S, Robin B, Eliana M, Anya B, Myah W and Grace A for speaking with such confidence. The evening also had some beautiful musical interludes, and our thanks must go to the performers and those accompanying them. Well done to Juliette P, Sophie T and Charlotte R for Where Did The Rock Go? and to Zelda J for a lovely rendition of A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes.

The Mayor and Mayoress and Chairman of Durham County Council were in attendance and were extremely complimentary of how wonderful our girls, and our school is. It was also lovely to say goodbye to our Upper Sixth Leavers, who are off to University this week, or starting their gap year. I would like to thank the whole community for their involvement in the evening, including all staff who work extremely hard to make the event a success. My thanks also to you, our parents, for coming along and supporting your daughters. It is always very much appreciated.

Great North Run

A huge congratulations to all of those in the wider DHS family who took part in the famous Great North Run half-marathon on Sunday. Congratulations also go to all the girls that ran in the Junior and Mini Great North Runs on the Quayside on Saturday.

Women’s World Cup Competition

Miss Coulson ran a competition for girls in the Prep Department to guess who they thought would win the Women’s Football World Cup. Heidi in Year 6 and Isla Year 3 were selected randomly and were given a prize that Miss Coulson got from Australia. Well done to all!

Outdoor Tots

We are delighted to launch Outdoor Tots again this year.

It is a chance for girls and boys, aged 1-4, to spend time exploring outdoors, every Monday during term time. The first session will take place on Monday 18 September 2023. Places are limited and booking is essential. Click here to secure your child’s place.

Annual Consent Form

Your child will have many opportunities, throughout their time at Durham High School, to participate in educational visits and off-site activities. We are required to seek parental consent for activities that may need a higher level of risk management, or those that take place outside normal school hours.

To simplify the process and to reduce the burden of administration, we seek consent from parents, which will cover participation in any of these types of school organised activities, throughout their time at Durham High School. Staff members in charge of organising visits will ensure that you are provided with full details well in advance of any visit.

Consent from a parent is required before your child can participate in educational visits and other off-site activities including:

  • All school organised off-site activities before and after the school day e.g., fieldwork.
  • Off-site sporting fixtures, including outside of the school day.
  • Visits to other educational establishments (schools, colleges, universities).

If you give consent to your child participating in educational visits and other off-site activities, please complete the consent form on School Gateway.

Communication with school

We understand that when you need to contact school, it’s usually something important regarding your daughter. We absolutely understand this and want to be in contact as soon as we can to assist in a timely manner.

Parental communication is vital and we would never wish to discourage parents from communicating with staff, establishing a strong relationship and working together for the benefit of our pupils.

We do however, need parents to be aware that our teachers do not have many opportunities throughout the day to check their emails and respond to queries, which is why we would ask you to observe the following:

  • School will acknowledge receipt of an email or phone call within the working day
  • A further response will be provided within three working days (if not an urgent enquiry), by telephone or in writing, if appropriate. If you need to contact in an emergency situation, please ring Reception and share your concern.
  • Governors and I are keen to keep staff workload balanced and as a result, we are not expected to respond to queries outside the working day, Monday to Friday during term time. Parents may wish to compose emails at an hour to suit their needs, but please be aware there may be a delay outside of these hours.

You will also find a Communication Protocol attached to this letter, which outlines methods of communication and the relevant channels for different types of queries. We hope this proves useful to parents and staff as it sets clear pathways and ensures that you are able to contact the most appropriate person to deal with your concern.

Open Mornings

During this year, we have three Whole School Open Mornings. Two of the Open Mornings take place this term, on Saturday 30 September and Saturday 18 November, both 10.00am – 12.30pm. The final Open Morning is Saturday 8 June 2024. Open Mornings are, above all, opportunities for prospective parents to look around the school, however, existing parents are always welcome.

As you can imagine, our school would not be the vibrant, dynamic environment without our wonderful pupils. All pupils in Year 7-11 are expected to attend the first Open Morning on Saturday 30 September 2023. Pupils in Year 7-10 are then expected to attend one of the other Open Mornings, in either November or June. The Sixth Form Senior Team also play a very important role in our Open Mornings. If your daughter is part of the Sixth Form Senior Team, they are expected to attend at least two of the Open Mornings.

If you have not completed the form on School gateway, identifying which other Open Morning your daughter will be attending, please can we ask that you do this by Friday 22 September 2023.