Come and play at one of our Outdoor Tots sessions

It is often said that a week is a long time in education and this week has been no different. Firstly, it was wonderful to welcome so many external pupils into school on Monday to celebrate European Day of Languages, with more about their visit below. Our catering team are also celebrating, following a near-perfect score in their latest catering audit. This includes a renewed Food Hygiene Rating of 5 and a 100% in Allergen management. Well done to Annie and the team for their continued efforts.

As you will be aware, on Tuesday we experienced an outage of internet and emails in school, after a hardware issue led to the server going down. We are delighted that the replacement equipment has arrived in school and the issue has been resolved, meaning that full accessibility has now been restored. We are immensely grateful to Mr Kerton and our IT support team for their efforts over the last few days.

Finally, we host our first Open Day of the academic year tomorrow morning, with many prospective families booked in to attend and find out more about our wonderful school. Our sincerest thanks in advance to all pupils that will be involved in showing parents around, helping out in departments and showcasing all our talents to the wider community.

Dr English Memorial Bench

This morning, we invited the family of Dr Christine English into school to hold a small ceremony at the unveiling of a memorial bench. Dr English was a Governor at Durham High School for a number of years, and was very active in what is now the Pre-Prep and Prep Departments. She sadly passed away during April 2020 and is very much missed by all. The new bench is located outside Main Reception.

Sports Update

It was excellent effort and teamwork from our U18 Netball Team, who were runners-up at the Durham City and District Tournament on Wednesday.

Saturday also saw the start of our Hockey season, with friendly matches for the U12 and U13 teams against Dame Allan’s and on Tuesday the U14 team finished 3rd in the Tyne and Wear Tournament. Well done to all the girls involved on their determination and team spirit.

ZooLab Visit

Pupils in Pre-Prep and Prep were treated to a visit from ZooLab this morning, who led a Science workshop using their ZET (Zoolab Environment Time Machine), which is an environmental time machine that travels back through history and forward into the future looking at climate data. In the workshop, pupils explored topics such as fossil fuels, greenhouse gases, sea ice depletion, rainforest coverage and animal extinctions. There were also animal demonstrations, where they were able to hold and interact with various creatures including a Madagascar hissing cockroach and a White’s tree frog.

European Day of Languages Outreach

It was wonderful to invite over 60 pupils from Shincliffe Primary and St Margaret’s Primary in for a variety of fun activities as part of celebrations for European Day of Languages. Students were taught how to change money into Euros and how to go shopping for souvenirs in French. They then put their newly-acquired skills and vocabulary into practice in our French market, where they were able to buy a range of items. There was even a French bank for pupils to change their English pocket money into Euros. Our thanks to Miss
Hill and the MFL Department for organising the event.

Lindisfarne Gospels Pilgrimage

The Lindisfarne Gospels underwent a 130-mile journey this month, travelling from Gainford in County Durham to Lindisfarne, Holy Island. The pilgrims transported a replica of St Cuthbert’s coffin, which visited a total of 26 schools throughout the 12-day trek and engaged with around 3,000 children.

This included a visit to Year 6 pupils at Durham High School, with pupils having the opportunity to see the iconic Lindisfarne Gospels, before they joined the pilgrims along to their next visit at St Margaret’s Primary School. During the walk, pupils were able to carry St Cuthbert’s Gospel in a leather pouch and help wave the County Durham flag with St Cuthbert’s Cross.

Primary Latin Outreach Club

We are delighted that Minimus Latin will be restarting on Monday 10 October. The sessions run every Monday, during term time, for all pupils in Year 5 and 6, including those children that do not currently attend Durham High School.

Follow the exploits of a mouse living in a Roman family at Vindolanda on Hadrian’s Wall in the first century AD. Learn some Latin and find out about Roman life in a fun, friendly environment, with lots of activities aimed at enhancing literacy and understanding of language. Please get in touch at [email protected] for further details and to find out how to sign up.

Author Visit

On Tuesday, the author Jonathan Tulloch came into school to talk to Year 5 and 6 students about his new book called Cuckoo Summer. The book is set in the Lake District during the Second World War. It was a wonderful cultural experience for the Prep pupils, who were able to ask questions and also have their copies of the book signed by the author afterwards. Our thanks go to the book’s publishers Andersen Press for helping to arrange the visit.

Prep Hockey Festival

On Wednesday, the U11M team travelled to Mowden Hall School to take part in a Hockey festival. The girls showed fantastic determination and teamwork throughout. Well done to everyone that took part.

Harvest Appeal Collection

As part of our Harvest Appeal, we are asking for your contributions of non-perishable foodstuffs to start coming into school to support two local charities. Pre-Prep and Prep are collecting for Durham Food Bank, with all donations going to local homeless and vulnerable people. Senior Department are collecting for Feeding Families, a North East charity that offers support to those in the region experiencing food poverty.

If you can, please donate non-perishable food items and toiletries to the relevant cause. Items such as milk (UHT/powdered), coffee, tinned rice pudding, tinned custard, tinned fruit, fruit juice (long life), tinned tomatoes, tinned meat, bars of chocolate, basic toiletries, small washing powder bottles and washing up liquid are especially in demand.

Outdoor Tots

We are thrilled that Outdoor Tots will be returning to school in October. Outdoor Tots is an excellent opportunity for boys and girls aged 1-4 to come with an adult and spend some time exploring our fantastic outdoor learning area, every Tuesday morning.

It is a great way for toddlers to have fun, exploring the natural world in a safe and stimulating environment. Places are limited and booking is essential. Tickets are £5 per child (1-4) and Additional siblings (1-4) are £2.50 each. Refreshments will be provided. You can book a place now by clicking here.