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19 November 2021

As we get closer to the end of the autumn term, one of my favourite tasks each year is selecting the winning design for our DHSB Christmas Card.

This year we received several brilliant ideas and the selection was difficult but I’m sure you’ll agree this design by Jeremi Sztuka 7N is a worthy winner.

Well done Jeremi, I'm looking forward to seeing your winning picture on our school Christmas cards.

Whole School Assembly

On Wednesday the whole school shared in a House Assembly led by Mr Huq.

Mr Huq said, “My assembly this week celebrated the students who have completed their Bronze, Silver and Gold DofE Award in the last three months. I gave an update on the House Championship followed by a musical interlude from one of the Winstanley House Captains, Heloise. I gave a reminder about the food items we are collecting for two charities in the run up to Christmas with a list of other charities we could support next year. I gave a Fantasy Premier League update and, as it is World Children's Day on Saturday 20 November, the assembly included some short videos from UNICEF on how children can get involved”.

Thank you Mr Huq.

Excellent Work

Mr Orkney says that the Year 13 A Level Physical Education students were invited to City College, Plymouth by the Programme Manager of the Strength, Conditioning & Sports Coaching degree programmes, Ian Davis FdSc. Ian introduced the students to their range of testing and analytical equipment, some of which is the most advanced in the country.

Students were able to test themselves using movement and reaction equipment, strength, torque and stability analysis.

Mr Orkney said, “This was a fascinating morning and the students left feeling inspired by what opportunities exist in the world of higher education”.

Student News

Well done to Joel Sullivan 10C who, as an U15, played for Plymouth Argyle U18 at the weekend.

Joel, who also represents the school as the current U15 Plymouth Schoolboys Football Captain, received a glowing write up on the PAFC website, available to read at this link.

Congratulations also to Ed Nicholson 9C who has just won the BMC South West (South) Youth Climbing Series. This is a series of climbing competitions around the South West and winning this means that he has qualified for the national championship in a few weeks time.

Well done Ed, we wish you all the best for the nationals.

Key Stage 5 Physics Team Challenge

Dr Colvile reports that two Sixth Form teams took part in the Key Stage 5 Physics Team Challenge at Exeter Airport Future Skills Centre, run by Exeter Maths School.

The challenge consisted of an estimation round, a practical challenge, and a very hard questions round. Out of 21 teams present, our teams came in first place and fifth place - well done!

First placed team, James Hills, Tom Dobby, Charlie Foster, Addison Mee.

Fifth placed team Cameron Hart, Byron Perry, Rufus Sadler, Matthew Wills.

PSHEE Activities

Our assembly this week centred around the House competition Aim High and was presented by Mr Huq, Head of Houses.

On Friday morning Year 7 students began working through a new electronic resource book called STEPs, which aims to develop employability skills. They began by thinking about the changes they have coped with recently, then thought about their dream job and also their achievements to date. Some students will have moved on to think about transitions and scenarios.

The Year 8 lesson was all about active listening. They carried out various different exercises to demonstrate how we can show someone that we are listening, and how much more difficult it is for the speaker if we don't do so! They moved on to trying out exercises in following verbal instructions, and set themselves listening targets for the future.

Year 9 students completed their two lessons on researching different skills needed for different job roles in the NHS, and Year 10 had the second week of the tutor carousel. Ms Cunningham spoke about humanity's enduring relationship ... with his/her dog, while Mrs Downes encouraged them to plan a budget, with each group being allocated a different salary example to work from. Mr May's groups learned about Eudaimonia (I had to look it up) an ancient wisdom from Aristotle regarding finding happiness which is just as applicable today as it ever was in Ancient Greece. I will describe the other three workshops in the Head’s Blog after Curriculum Challenge Week, which of course is next week.

Year 11 students will not be taking part in CCW as they have their scheduled mock GCSE exams with an English exam during what would have been today's tutorial lesson.

In CCW I am working with three local employers, Babcock, Princess Yachts and Bailey Partnership who are setting workplace challenges for Year 9 students. They will begin the challenges, mostly design based but requiring research, teamwork and presentation skills during the week, and then complete them in tutorial lessons later in the term, for judging (and award of prizes) in the spring.

Mr Manley and I have also arranged some mental health first aid lessons with The Zone.

Hopefully the weather will hold for those venturing outside during the week with a mid-term break in routine for staff and students before the final three week run up to Christmas.

An extremely busy term for everyone! More details of the tutorial programme in Head's Blog on 3 December.

Ms Moreton

Sports Update

In our update this week Mr Orkney wants to remind all students about the opportunities on offer at school including table tennis, badminton, cross country, climbing and the use of the fitness suite.

Any students interested in finding out more should speak to Mr Orkney, Mr Campbell or any member of the PE teaching staff.

Table Tennis

Congratulations to Leo Nguyen 8C and Hugo Nguyen 8N who are ranked first and fourth in the national table tennis ranking in England in the U13 Boys category. Many congratulations.


Well done to the Year 8 basketball team who won three games at theith Central Venue competition this week.


Congratulations to the Year 7 football team who won their national cup game against Stoke Damerel 4 - 2.

In addition, Mr Carpenter said it was a "Really positive night at the Year 7 central venue football on Thursday". Well done to all those who took part.

Pictured is the Year 9 football team who played in the first night of the Plymouth U14 Central Venue. The team finished with a win against Heles and defeat to Eggbuckland B.

Mr Bunney said it was, “An enjoyable night of football”.

Mr Manley reports that unfortunately the Year 10 team is out of the National Cup after losing 10 - 9 on penalties against Torquay Academy, Well played all.

Mr Orkney was pleased that two Year 11 teams took part and played well at the Plymouth central venue competition this week.

And congratulations to the 1st XI who remain top of the Devon Wednesday League league after this week’s victory against Britannia Royal Naval College.


Royal Marines Volunteer Cadet Corps

Neill Anstee, the Commanding Officer of the Royal Marines Volunteer Cadet Corps (RMVCC) Band, has asked me to share this information with you.

We are a volunteer cadet corps for children from 9 – 16 with the aim of promoting music within the local community, and getting children engaged with music.

The RMVCC Band is currently based in RM Stonehouse and is recruiting children aged between 9 – 16.

Some points of interest:

Children aged between 9 - 16 can join the RMVCC Band

All instrumental abilities are welcome; whether they already play or would like to learn

Cadets can gain a Duke of Edinburgh award as well as a BTEC qualification in music

Cadets are instructed by members of HM Royal Marines Band Service and the RMVCC will pay towards graded instrumental exams

If you would like any further information, please see the poster below and do not hesitate to get in touch by using the email address shown.


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