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8 December 2017

Everyone Succeeds.

Today I’d like to share my termly update on the progress we are making as a school towards our current priorities and to ensure that we strive to achieve our vision that ‘Everyone Succeeds

We have targeted the most significant challenges since September and have formed our School Development Priorities.

You’ll find my updates at the foot of today’s Blog but first please read about Wednesday’s special charity day.

Whole School Charity Day

Our charity day on Wednesday saw the school at its best. It was wonderful to see and feel the real sense of community from students, staff and parents.

I’m very pleased to announce the grand total for the day raised is an amazing £7667.29.

This includes the funds raised on Simon’s new Justgiving page, our Christmas raffle, mufti-day, donations from parents and friends and all the House stalls and activities.

Susan Marsh, Head of Newton, is very proud of everyone who took part and said, “The fundraising day was truly a whole school event with everyone pulling together to support Simon and his chosen charities, CLIC Sargent and the Teenage Cancer Trust”.

Paul Gathercole, Assistant Director at CLIC Sargent, said, “A massive thank you to DHSB from everyone at CLIC Sargent. It is amazing to see a school give so much support”.

Pictured are Jordan Anderton, Fundraising Engagement Manager for Devon & Cornwall and Jo Annand, CLIC Sargent Social Worker, with Mrs Marsh.

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A representative from the Teenage Cancer Trust added, “Huge thanks Devonport High School for Boys and everyone who took part in your amazing football tournament. We hope you had a great time! Thank you so much for supporting young people with cancer”.

Simon is a keen footballer and there was a strong football theme throughout the charity day. A highlight was the match between Simon’s XI and Mr Manley’s XI.

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This is the moment Mr Manley’s team scored an equaliser! The final score was 2 – 1 to Mr Manley’s side.

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 Elias Klockars 10N won the half-time crossbar challenge

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 At the end of the match Simon was presented with a signed shirt donated by

Plymouth Argyle Football Club

 Other activities include the DHSB’s got Talent Show.

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Pictured are the Mamma Mia Mealtime Assistants

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 The House Dodgeball competition was fast and furious!

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This is just one of the many House stalls

The activities on the day raised £1714.43 so a huge well done to everyone who contributed.

The Christmas raffle, organised by Michaela Armstrong, raised £2,500 towards the grand total.

She said, “Special thanks to our parents and to the following companies for their generous support of our Charity Raffle including First Great Western, Focused Vision,, Theatre Royal, Plymouth, Delta Force Paintball, Plymouth, China Fleet Country Club, Saltash, Rockets & Rascals, Plymouth, Clip n’ Climb, Plymouth, Jump, Plymouth, Brimbles Bakery, Plymouth, Waitrose, Saltash, Morrisons, Plymouth and Calor Gas, Plymouth”.

Christmas Card

In other news this week it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Solly Hunter 7S is the winner of our Christmas card competition. He receives a gift voucher and the knowledge that his design will be printed and distributed to over 100 friends of the school this year.

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Carol Service

Also, we’d love you to join us at our Carol Service at St Andrew’s Church on Monday 11 Dec at 7.00pm.

Year 7 students will be leading the singing and this morning they were sounding fantastic in their rehearsal.

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Exam Certificates

Mrs Edwards has asked me to mention that the A level and GCSE certificates from the Summer 2017 exam season are ready to collect from her office.

Individual Sports Success

I’m pleased to share with you some individual sports success this week.

Thomas Ringrose Year 13 has been selected for the Great Britain U20 Ultimate team for the World Championship taking place in Canada in August 2018. This will be Tom’s third year in the U20 team.

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Very well done to Ethan Carlisle 9C who was successful at the Devon County Cricket trials. Ethan will train with the winter squad for the U14 team.

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Congratulations to Jackson Spry 11S pictured here collecting two awards from the Lord Mayor for his recent performance in the Plymouth City swimming gala. These awards are for overall top boy in the gala as well as top male youth swimmer.

He also won a shield for winning the male “super final” 100m Backstroke overall.

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Jackson also attended the Irish age group nationals swimming competition in Dublin, with Ben Suckling 11C.

This was a great experience for them, with both boys performing well in their age groups at their first experience of a national swimming event.

Sports Update

There were lots of fixtures this week.


Congratulations to the U16 badminton team who won their pool in the Plymouth Schools competition this week. All three teams (U18s, U16s and U14s) have qualified for the Devon finals.


Well done to our Year 7 basketball team who took silver after losing 2 – 1 to Stoke Damerel in the final of the Plymouth competition.

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The Year 9 Rugby team beat Plymouth College 55 – 17 to make it into the final of the West Devon Cup. Well done both teams for a really entertaining game.


The U13 team go out of the National Cup after a really good game with St Peters School, Exeter, winning 4 – 0 at the end.

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Future Events

11 December – Carol Service

13 December – Speech Day

19 December – Final day of term


Everyone Succeeds – Termly Update

Priority 1: Students achieve the highest academic outcomes

Promote an expectation of reflection, review and a commitment to improve to achieve excellence

We feature examples of excellent work every week on the Head’s Blog, here is a recent example. Children’s Welfare Report 1903 written by Benedict Bailey and Charles Dobbie 8S.

Year 8 students were looking at the Industrial Revolution and were set a task to investigate either the slave trade or the conditions of the workers in the factories and new cities of the north as if they were contemporaries, using primary sources to build up their presentation. This allowed them to have the opportunity to use contemporary sources with sophistication to draw complex conclusions about the past.

Mr Macleod said, “This piece of work is excellent because, in addition to the huge amount of time and effort they put into the research and final presentation, they were able to meld factual knowledge with carefully chosen contemporary accounts to build up an effective and accurate picture of the main issues facing the new industrial towns. More impressively they were able to adopt the roles of government inspectors with confidence starting out with an agenda for the investigation and finishing with a series of proposals they would advise the Government to adopt. In other words the planning and execution was excellent and as a result the high level of thinking required shines through. Of course the most important reason it was excellent was they gave me a knighthood in their introduction!”

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Priority 3: Leadership at all levels

Embedding and enhancing the extensive leadership opportunities for students

Duke of Edinburgh

Since September 120 Year 10 students have completed their bronze expedition assessment. Thanks to all the members of staff who have supported them.

Here are just two messages we received from parents following the expeditions.

“Thanks for looking after my son and the rest of the boys this weekend; he’s achieved something he thought he couldn’t”.

“Thanks for the photos and for bringing Adam back safely. It was much appreciated”.

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UK Youth Parliament

Very well done to Sixth Form student Alizeh Abdul Rahman who was selected to speak in the annual UK Youth Parliament debate in the House of Commons recently.

John Bercow, Speaker of the House of Commons, said Alizeh’s speech was “’incredibly powerful and thought provoking”.

Justine Greening, Secretary of State for Education, added, “It was a huge privilege to speak [to members of the Youth Parliament] today. Well done to everyone who participated”.

Listen to Alizeh here.

Enhance the support of staff and student wellbeing through a collective approach

At the start of this school year, all students were provided with a wellbeing action plan on their timetable for completion and have been encouraged regularly to reflect on things that support their own personal wellbeing. A copy of the DHSB wellbeing action plan can be found on our school website.

One of the five ways to wellbeing is to ‘be mindful’ and so in October Mrs Edwards also in taught Year 8 students about mindfulness, what this means, how it can support wellbeing and four initial mindfulness activities.

She encouraged all students in Year 8 to practise mindfulness for a few minutes each day and challenged them to a ‘month of mindfulness’ through November the details of which are below.

When: Each Monday, Wednesday and Friday she will share a new mindfulness strategy/task to try.

Where: On the noticeboard by the Edison House office in C block, on the wall outside my office (C15) and in the Learning Commons by the beanbags on the glass.

What: Simple strategies.

Why: Benefit from becoming mindful and learn a new skill for your DHSB Community Award. Any student can take part even if they are not in Year 8. You may even like to try mindfulness yourself too.

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Priority 4: Collaboration and community

Promote and embed British Values and the Prevent agenda

At the end of September Salam Katbi (South West Prevent Regional Co-ordinator) spoke at our whole school assembly.

Salam explained her role working in counter-terrorism for the Government and also how she achieved her position following her move to the UK in 2004 from Syria, initially attending Exeter University. Salam’s presentation described how the process of radicalisation takes place over a period of time and she shared the reasons why some people are more susceptible to being radicalised. She proceeded to explain some of the misconceptions around key terms used to describe terrorists and finished by delivering these key messages:

• Avoid putting people in boxes. Stereotypes and prejudices can be harmful • Challenge ‘us’ and ‘them’ narrative • Be alert but not alarmed • Protect yourself and your friends • Safety online

Enable families to support their children through regular engagement events

Next Steps

In October Ms Moreton organised a very successful evening on future choices, it is incredibly important that all young people get really good independent information advice and guidance on their next steps and the opportunities available to them.

Strategies for Success

Just under 200 parents, carers and Year 11 students attended the Strategies for Success workshop in October. The event offered support for students and parents in their preparation for GCSE examinations next summer. Year 12 students, Liam Ward and James O’Sullivan, shared their experiences from last year and gave excellent advice on how to revise successfully. Around 80 attended the intensive two revision workshops and additional events. The key message communicated throughout the evening was that good planning will have a positive impact upon future cholces”.

The Strategies for Success presentations can be found in the Year 11 letters and documents folder.

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Priority 5: Creative and entrepreneurial spirit

Continue to use the latest cutting edge technology creatively and innovatively influencing the wider educational community

Dan Harris one of our Year 13 students has used his entrepreneurial initiative to create and grow his business called Junior Job Finder.

Dan says, “The website has been designed to give teenagers one single place to look when searching for apprenticeships, courses, part-time work and work experience. Over the recent months, the site has gone from strength to strength, building its membership size up to over 1450 members”.

Junior Job Finder is looking to carry forward the current momentum and grow to 2,000 members in the next few weeks.

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Greenpower International Final

Well done to staff and students who travelled to the Greenpower racing international final at Rockingham Motor Speedway in Corby in October.

It was a wonderful experience and the team did incredibly well to be placed joint 26th internationally, a fantastic improvement from the previous year’s position of joint 36th.

Thanks goes to Mr Ames for coordinating and leading the team and Mrs Flack for accompanying them to the competition.



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