This week is Anti-Bullying Week, and it is an opportunity for us all to send a clear and positive message that bullying is neither acceptable nor inevitable in our schools and communities. The theme this year is ‘One Kind Word’ and pupils have been exploring this concept as part of their Tutor Time this week.

The theme of Anti-Bullying Week this year reminds us that kindness is more important today than it has ever been. The isolation of the last year has underlined how little acts of consideration can break down barriers and brighten the lives of the people around us.

Sports Update

Congratulations to the girls who represented Durham High School at the District Cross County Competition on Tuesday. A special mention to the Year 10 team who finished in second place, with all five members finishing in the top 16 runners. Well done to Holly M, Logan W, Grace A, Izzy E and Keira R.

They will now go on to represent Central Durham at the County Cross Country Competition in January along with Millie S (Year 7) who finished 3rd in her race and Darcy M (Year 9) who finished 9th in her race.

Well done also to both the Year 7 and Year 8 Netball A teams on winning their league fixture against Park View this week. The Year 7 and Year 8 B teams also played their first two matches this week against Park View and Durham School. The Under 12 netball team also put in a great effort against Ashville College.

It was a fantastic morning for Year 3 at the Under 8 Hockey Festival yesterday, playing against schools from around the region. The girls showed some superb skills and excellent teamwork, and they won 6 out of their 7 games.

Scholars’ Concert

The recordings from last week’s fantastic Scholars’ Concerts are now available to watch on our Facebook page. There was some wonderful talent on display across the two performances, with a wide variety of pupils taking part. You can watch the first evening of performances here and the second evening is available to view here. Well done again to everyone who took part.

Additional Bank Holiday

There will be an additional Bank Holiday in 2022 to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. As this will take place during the May half term, we have nominated Monday 28 February 2022 as our additional Bank Holiday, immediately after February half term. The school will be closed to all pupils and staff on this day. We will reopen as normal on Tuesday 1 March 2022.

English Speaking Union Competition

Congratulations to the Senior House pupils in our debating team, who are through to the next round of the The English-Speaking Union MACE debating competition. Our proposition argument was to make Paternity Leave compulsory. Well done to all who participated and good luck in the next round.

Karate success

Christina in Year 8 has enjoyed some tremendous karate success in the last few weeks. During October half term, she attended the KUGB Northern Region Championships held at The University of Sunderland. She had particular success in the Children’s Brown Belt Kata event, winning silver after a strong performance of Bassai Dai.

Christina was selected to compete for the Sendai Kushiro Competition Squad at the KUGB National Youth Championships on the 7 November in Chesterfield. She ended up winning a bronze medal in the same category, after some impressive elimination rounds. To top it off, Christina achieved her black belt last weekend, alongside her mum, under the watchful eye of Sensei F. Brennan and Sensei G. Harford in Sunderland.

Nine Lessons and Carols

This year, our Nine Lessons and Carols Service will take place in Durham Cathedral on Wednesday 15 December at 2.15pm. Further details can be found in the letter sent yesterday. The service will involve all pupils in Years 3 and above. For pupils in Nursery – Year 2, the school day will run as normal. After School Care will be available although there will be no extra-curricular activities. Please collect pupils in Nursery – Year 2 as normal.

If you would like to attend, you must book a free ticket in advance. Pupils do not need a ticket. As per Durham Cathedral protocols, anyone aged 12+ must be prepared to show an NHS COVID Pass, a negative PCR or lateral flow test taken within the previous 48 hours, or a positive PCR test from within the past six months in order to gain entry. To book tickets, please go to the following link: https://www.trybooking.co.uk/BIWT.

Christmas Fayre

A final plea for donations of raffle and tombola prizes, as well as bottles, chocolates, second-hand toys and books, and cakes and biscuits for next Friday’s Christmas Fayre. Items can be dropped into Main Reception any day next week, but food donations should not be brought in until the day of the event. Thank you for your support.

If you would like to attend next Friday, it will be from 2pm – 4.30pm in the Sports Hall. The event will feature a Santa’s Grotto, refreshments, games, children’s activities, hoop a bottle, tombola and much more. A reminder also for pupils to bring back any sold raffle tickets early next week. Thank you.

Parents and Friends

Parents and Friends are still seeking parents to take on the role of Vice Chair and Secretary, respectively. We are extremely grateful to the Parents and Friends for the work that they continue to do in raising money for the benefit of the pupils at Durham High School. Donations from them in recent years have included the grand piano in the Main Hall, the outdoor gym and the canopies in the playground. If you are interested in volunteering for either of the advertised roles, or would just like to join to attend meetings and support the group where you can, all help is greatly appreciated. Please contact enquiries@dhsfg.org.uk in the first instance.

Memorial for Mrs Dorothy Woodman

Durham High School is helping to organise a memorial service for Mrs Dorothy Woodman, former Head of Classics, who sadly passed away last year. The service will be taking place on Monday 13 December at 2pm at St Oswald’s Church, Durham, DH1 3DQ. Those who knew, worked with or were taught by Mrs Woodman are most welcome to attend. If you do plan on coming along, please could we ask that you email j.hall@dhsfg.org.uk out of courtesy? This is so the school can keep a check on numbers in line with the capacity of the church. Please feel free to share details of this event with fellow classmates and colleagues that may be interested in attending.