What a week! The school has been buzzing with energy as the new year begins, old students return and for the first time we are joined by Year Sevens as well as Year Eights. But of course, it’s only just beginning and what an exciting year it’s going to be with many new opportunities for everyone throughout the school, from drama and sports to science and art. A new year means a new chance to succeed and continue to go beyond our best.
Durrington’s exciting new building work
One of the most exciting things for all of us returning to Durrington High School has been seeing the building work completed. It was an interesting time for students in Years 9, 10 and 11 who have been anticipating the end result after watching the building work in progress during the summer term. Our new buildings have also been the talk of the Year 7 and 8 students since the chic modern design and fresh and airy feel have created quite an impression.
The development comprises of four new science labs, four new maths classrooms and four new humanities rooms, as well as a performing arts studio; all in a three storey block which can be entered via an outside walkway on the ground floor and a corridor on both the first and second floors. Another highlight is the new pavilion, with its views of the field, which houses changing rooms to the north and a new additional cafeteria currently for year 7 and 8 to the south. This fantastic venue with a contemporary style will also provide in the future a welcoming space for parents and carers to watch extracurricular sporting activities out of school hours. Additionally, four demountable English classrooms have been added outside of the Maths and English departments and there is also a superb astro turf pitch to the west of the pavilion, constructed to an extremely high specification. The first week back has not only enabled us to get used to our new surroundings but also allowed us to enjoy them; I believe the entire school site which never stops improving will continue to impress throughout this academic year and for many more to come.
Clubs and activities
Extra-curricular clubs are once again starting this week at Durrington. Ranging from intense Rugby training to Global Rock Challenge preparation, there is most certainly a club suited to your interests and abilities. Clubs are also running at lunch time every day, with Badminton running in the sports hall on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and Table Tennis in the Gym on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Check out the full list of extra-curricular clubs on the changing room doors and in all your classrooms, and be sure to get involved and stay active!
This year’s production will be Beauty and the Beast; it is being run by the Performing Arts department and aims to top the amazing success of last year’s production Les Mis. It will involve all year groups, with students taking part in acting, singing, lighting and stage crew.
The Year Eleven boys rugby team achieved great success in a recent tournament. The boys performed brilliantly, as ever, and finished in 2nd place overall, winning two games and losing one to get to the final in which they narrowly lost 21-19. Congratulations to star players Alex Perry, Conor Hewitt and Ryan Macmillan who scored five tries. Hopefully this result is just the beginning of a superb year not just academically at Durrington, but also in our sporting achievements.
Thoughts of Year 7 and 8 Durrington High students
In 2014, Durrington was a school made up of around 1440 pupils, however, things have changed. Now, around 1700 students can proudly call Durrington their school. The Year 7 students have now spent more than two weeks at Durrington and everything is running smoothly. The transition from middle school to high school can most definitely be defined as ‘a big step up’. However, Durrington High has welcomed Year 7 and they are fitting in perfectly. The student leadership team interviewed a selection of Year 7 and 8 students. A Coubertin student in Year 7, said, “I like how we came into the school the same time as the year 8s, we’re not the only new younger students.” Another Year 7 student, said, “It’s great how we’re put into different sets that are suited to our abilities.”
The Year 8 students have also shared positive feedback regarding their first week at Durrington. A Year 8 student in Shelley, told us, “Everybody here is willing to help, and although the school is massive, I’m not afraid to ask anyone for help.” A year 8 student, commented, “I enjoy P.E a lot the astro is amazing.” We’re all very pleased to hear such positive comments about the school.
Durrington High continues to amaze with incredible GCSE results!
Once again, Durrington High students are celebrating an outstanding set of GCSE results, with significant improvement from last year. Pupils far exceeded the national average figures with 67 per cent of students achieving five or more A*-C grades including English and Maths. The best ever results for Durrington High school.
Hard work most certainly pays off! 51% of further Maths students achieved a grade of A/A*, 46% of Geography students received an A/A* and 44% of students studying Performing Arts gained an A/A* grade. However, that’s not all: 100% of students in Art, Textiles and Graphics received a grade of A*-C!
There were many fine individual successes, including Ben Gardner, who recorded a mighty 9A*s and 3As, Laura Gilbert with 8A*s and 3As and Chantelle Fuller and Alex Thomas who both gained 7A*s and 4As. In addition to this, there were a number of students who exceeded the grades expected of them which is truly a reflection of the dedicated efforts of staff and students over the past year. We look forward to an amazing year. Please contact us with your views and success.