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16 December 2022

As this term draws to a close I’d like to remind you that an overview of our current school development plan and the progress we’ve made towards the priorities can be found at this link.

Please take a moment to read through our update.

Christmas Celebration Assemblies

This term’s celebration assemblies were held on Wednesday when students were recognised and rewarded for their behaviour and attendance during this term.

Awards were made in the following categories and when more than one student was nominated a special ‘santa race’ was held to determine the winner. This caused a lot of fun and excitement in the various assembly venues.

  • Student of the month

  • Student of the term

  • Most commendations

  • Good behaviour award

  • 95% attendance award

  • 100% attendance award

Mr Manley said, “It's always lovely to end this term by celebrating the achievements of so many students.''

Thank you to our Heads of Year and Deputy Heads of Year for delivering the assemblies and a special mention to Mrs Stanton for putting the wonderful slides together.

Year 8 winners

Year 11 assembly

Santa race

Our Christmas whole school assembly this morning included some fun festive karaoke and musical performances as well as safety messages for the Christmas break.

Our week in pictures

We’ve enjoyed a very festive end to the term and thanks are due to all staff and students who have supported our Christmas events and charity collections in the last couple of weeks.

Here are some images from the week along with a selection of messages we have received.

Carol Service

'Great performance tonight'

'A huge thank you to everyone involved in the absolutely wonderful carol service'

We feel extremely grateful to have experienced such an incredible evening'

'All the students were outstanding - it really was such a joy to be part of'

Christmas Cracker Concert

'So lovely to see the community coming together again to watch our talented performers'

'Great entertainment at the Christmas Cracker performance - loved the funk n soul band - RESPECT!'

'Brilliant performances. Thanks for a great evening'

'Absolutely fantastic!'

Refuel Christmas Dinner

Christmas Puddings for Project 35 at Plymouth Argyle Football Club

'Over 150 puddings were collected today!'

Christmas Cooking Club

'Gingerbread houses made, assembled and decorated at Cooking Club tonight. Excellent results, well done everyone'

Excellent Work

Mrs McConnell has sent these photographs of the wonderful work that students in 7E produced in response to their creative homework tasks on A Christmas Carol.

Congratulations to 7E!

A Christmas Carol themed advent calendar hand drawn by William Lowson

Ewan Baker's Santa Hat facts about Christmas traditions

Rowan Shilling's costume for a character in A Christmas Carol including the prize turkey!

Frazer Dalton's delicious cake with snowflake design and Scrooge and Tiny Tim

Jeroen King's brilliant advent calendar including facts about Christmas traditions as well as pictures and models (including a light up Christmas tree!)

Student News

Well done to Year 12 student Maia Pearson and partner Ollie Heath for their amazing diving at the English Schools Swimming Association diving competition in London last weekend.

They won the mixed syncro silver medal.

Also congratulations to Oscar Westbury 8W who dived incredibly well representing DHSB at the national championships taking sisth place in a tough competition.

The South West Division (mostly made up of Plymouth divers) scored extremely well with divers adding up the points and were awarded with first place. Well done to all.

Nathan Richards 7E is also to be congratulated this week. He took part in the

South West trampolining and double mini trampoline championships and was received the following awards:-

First place double mini trampoline trophy and shield

Second place trampoline team medal

First place synchro trampolining

Ten Tors Training

Having completed the Abbot's Way Walk earlier this term, 17 students from Years 11 and 12 set off in two minibuses after school on Friday 2 December heading for Dartmoor.

We arrived on a beautiful cold, clear evening just as the sun was setting, and divided into three groups. Members of our 2023 55-mile team led returning Year 11 students from last year's 35-mile team on a moonlit tour of all 16 checkpoints, including intercepting the other two groups which were being trained and assessed by Mr Guy-Fierens and Dr Colvile.

Whilst all these students being considered for places in our 45-mile team have some ability to use their map and compass, walking in darkness requires so much more attention to detail, so the two groups of Year 12 students made more steady progress with our headtorches, allowing every individual student to have a go at leading the map and compass work. It was great to see such great enthusiasm to rise to this challenge, as a team that can navigate accurately in the dark will also cope well in foggy conditions.

Many 45-mile and 55-mile teams on the Ten Tors challenge next April will also make use of the opportunity to continue walking after dark as they are required to pass beyond their last manned checkpoint on Day 1 of the challenge and find a location to pitch their tents unsupervised for a night of wild camping.

The same group of students has already signed up for a second night-navigation outing in January, which will be around Gutter Tor and Hartor. We hope to hear from the Army at about that time, whether or not we've been allocated a second 45-mile team to make a total of 12 team places to fill at that distance; in case we only have one team at each distance, we are also in contact with two other local team managers who have spaces at 35-mile (for Year 10) as well as 45-mile (Years 11 - 12) distances, and are aiming to ensure as many of our keenest students as possible have the opportunity to complete the 2023 Ten Tors Challenge.

Many thanks to all parents for supporting your sons and daughters in Ten Tors training, including providing transport back from Sharpitor last Friday. Thanks also to Mr Campbell for driving the second minibus.

Dr Colvile

PTFA Update

The PTFA has had a great week! After a three year forced hiatus we were delighted to bring back our fundraising disco at Pryzm! Demand was unprecedented! It was the hottest ticket in town!

We welcomed 786 students to Pryzm which was our legal capacity limit and they had a fantastic time. Thank you to everyone who has send us appreciative emails and left your comments on social media. I don't think they get better than this 'my daughter says it's the best night she's ever had'.

There is a possibility of a summer disco so please follow us on Facebook or Twitter for any announcements. Twitter: @DHSBPTFA The PTFA also provided the refreshments at yesterday's 'Christmas Cracker' event - our hot chocolate with cream and marshmallows was particularly popular!

A big thank you to all our supporters and helpers.

Our next PTFA meeting is on 10 January 2023 at 6.00pm in the Conference Room (directly behind the Visitor Reception). We would love to see you if you are able to make it. All that remains is to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Beverley Kinsella and the PTFA

DHSB Alumni News

Wishing all our alumni a lovely Christmas and a Happy New Year. Thank you for everything you have sent to me this year writes Mrs Kinsella.

I've loved reading your memories and seeing your photos. I've been sent some great memorabilia too. If you have not already seen my new Alumni Newsletter here is the link, it's s bumper Christmas edition so get comfy first! It's been read in 168 locations already!

Alumni Newsletter Don't forget we lso ahave a fantastic Alumni & Archives website too, and my previous Newsletters are available there:

Mrs Kinsella

Sports Update


The combined Year 7 and 8 basketball team won all three of their games at the Plymouth schools central venue tournament yesterday.

Mr Strang said, An excellent spirt was evident from all those involved. Well done".


The 1st XV lost to Torquay Boys Grammar School 40 - 19 in a game played in excellent spirit.

There was snow on the pitch so a great way to end for Christmas said Mr Orkney.


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