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Denmark Road High School

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Our School, Our Week -10 December 2021

In this issue:

  • Student News
  • Languages Outreach Event
  • Art
  • D of E
  • Cally Rhodes Performance
  • LRC News
  • Cyber First
  • Revision Webpage
  • Lunchtime Workshop
  • Aspens
  • Food Bank


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Student News



The Monica Louie Sims Essay Prize 2021


Huge congratulations to Year 13 student, Molly Carey-Topping, who is the inaugural recipient of The Monica Louie Sims Essay Prize. This prestigious annual prize has been established at DRHS to reward outstanding independent essay writing and original, insightful criticism, and is named in honour of one of Denmark Road's most pioneering alumni. 

Molly's essay confidently explored the concept of empowerment in Zora Neale Hurston's celebrated novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, and is a worthy first winner of the award.

Also, Highly Commended this year was Ella Bowman for her excellent response to Jacqueline Roy's novel, The Fat Lady Sings. Both students have received book vouchers courtesy of the school PTA, who have also generously funded the trophy for the prize.

Molly Carey-Topping



Ex Student News


Natasha Brooker who left in 2018 can be seen in the Quiz show - The Tournament on BBC iplayer, look out for her on episodes 3 and 4.




The Art department has been blown away by the high-quality artwork produced by Year 8 for their recent "under the sea" studies. Well done Year 8!

Art Work





10D Sociology have been learning about the history of Feminism and creating resources to help them remember the strands and waves of feminism. Some examples attached by Bethany Mawby, Isabella Macaraeg, Faith Benson, Georgia Gayeta and Leya Biju.




Languages Outreach Event


At the start of this week we had a visit from a linguist called Lisa who works for GCHQ.In GCHQ their jobs are to provide intelligence, protect information and inform relevant UK policy to keep society safe and successful. She came to talk to us about job opportunities in the future if we choose a language for GCSEs and maybe A-levels.

She talked to us about German; but in other classes she also spoke about French and Spanish.We got a real insight into what GCHQ do; for example we now know they work for MI5 and MI6, they use code names to talk about people and the people sending messages often use Caesar Ciphers to create hidden messages. 

We had to analyse, translate and decipher an email that was in German about counteracting a terrorist attack.  This allowed us to enhance our reading and inference skills as we only knew a select range of words from our previous knowledge. We took the key information from this email to provide details to the law enforcement, like when and where the attack was taking place and who was involved.

We ended the lesson learning basic phrases in Arabic such as, what is your name; my name is; how are you; thank you and good bye.This experience gave us a new insight into career paths and was very beneficial. 

-Maame Kumi-Addo 9SG2/9M and Debbie Sulola 9SG2/9Be


Cally Rhodes


Cally Rhodes will be performing for Year 8 and Year 9 on Thursday 16th December, Cally is a Welsh singer and songwriter who writes catchy, melodic and honest dance-pop music. Cally Rhodes


Her original music has been streamed over 20 million times online and her singles have appeared in Spotify Top 50 Charts all over the world. Cally was named ‘Best Introducing Artist of the Year 2019’ by BBC Introducing, supported Louise Redknapp on her last tour, as well as having her songs played on BBC's "Strictly Come Dancing." She’s looking forward to playing the main stage at Cardiff Pride this year as well as Supporting Will Young and James Morrison at the famous Kew the Music event in 2022.


D of E


Below is a photo of students from 10BE receiving their D of E certificate and badges for Bronze award.

DofE certificates



Cyber First 

Cyber First Logo


During the last 10 days, 34 girls in 9 teams have been trying to solve the puzzles and tasks set by the Cyber First Girls challenge to become the top cyber team at Denmark Road. They have found them fun, challenging, informative and interesting during the lunchtimes, after school and any other time they could give to it. Year 9 and 10 previous teams have been helping as well. The cooperation between years has been very impressive and has helped the year 8 students to learn how to use CyberChef as well as other programming languages and networking.

We are waiting to see if the top team, The Mini Marshmallows, have completed enough challenges to progress to the next level. 

Cyber First



Lunchtime workshops


In the run up to Christmas I have been running lunchtime workshops for jewellery making and Indian Head Massage (which I am trained in), to raise money for the families of two refugee speakers who have both very kindly contributed to the Learning for Life curriculum in the past, either through the Y11 Human Rights Day or the Y10 lessons on refugees.


Valantina and her family are Syrian Refugees. They have just in the last week obtained permanent residency in the UK which they are over the moon about. They are now desperate to achieve Citizenship status which is very expensive and demands a lot of study to pass a very challenging exam. They are not able to travel back to Syria in the future to visit their family and be able to return again without this.


Abdo is a young Sudanese refugee. After being arrested for a government protest (which he didn't even take part in), he was imprisoned and tortured for 3 month at the age of 15. After being let out prematurely due to a family member's intervention he was then being hunted down. He was forced to leave the country and after a year of working in Libya he managed to save enough money for a horrendous boat crossing which ended up taking 10 days, some people died. He eventually made it into the UK under a lorry from Calais. He was fortunate enough to get refugee status since if he had gone back he would have faced certain death. Abdo's dad died when he was 14, so his family do not have any income so despite living in the UK he sends almost all of his earnings (from working in McDonalds) back to his family for their rent and food. His sister has just got into university - she wants to study medicine, this means he is facing even more financial pressure since it will be down to him to pay for this - he is adamant that she will go!

Valantina and Abdo are some of the kindest and most inspiring people I have ever had the privilege to know. I would like to be able to show our appreciation for their input at school and help make their lives a little easier this Christmas. - Ms Crane

    Jewellery Making Jewellery  making

jewellery making



Revision Webpage


Following on from my emails last week, please use this link to take you to our new revision webpage, which includes:

  • Our metacognition bookmark: to aid reflection, monitoring and planning.
  • DRHS10 videos: 10 evidence informed learning strategies all students learn throughout their 7 years with us. These strategies empower them to become leaders of their own learning.
  • Our family revision guide: provides parents and students with information and strategies to support effective learning and revision.
  • GCSE and A-Level guides for all subjects: links to core textbooks, exam specifications, past papers, mark schemes and additional resources to aid learning and revision.
  • Our curriculum experience page: which details what students are currently studying and when, so as a family you can support learning and revision.

This page will continuously be added to with further strategies and information to support our families.

Ms A Wickson

Assistant Headteacher: Curriculum, Learning and Teaching and Teaching Hub



LRC News


December's activities are now well underway in the LRC.  As of this morning, there are 57 requests for Mystery Loans for the holidays, most with multiple genres to look for, and the Library Prefects are doing a marvellous job choosing and wrapping the books for their younger counterparts.  Please encourage your child to participate in some LRC activities: cross stitch bookmarks (materials provided), sharing favourite recipes, recommending to other tutor groups what they’ve enjoyed reading, signing up for a Mystery Loan, or thinking up a seasonal joke or riddle.  I am particularly keen for tutor groups to sort out the many overdue loans, both books and textbooks.  If tutor groups get all books and textbooks renewed, returned or replaced by the end of term, there will be a chocolate reward in January, which seems like a great incentive to spend a few hours having a good look at home or at the bottom of school bags.




This week I’m showcasing the top 20 most popular titles since September 2020, to provide you with an insight into what our students are reading.



All of these are available from the LRC using Click and Collect.  It’s pleasing to see so many of the Carnegie Shortlisted books from this and previous years on the list.  It is thanks to the generosity of our hardworking PTA that we can shadow this Award every year – and as you can see, our students are making good use of the extra copies available.  Many titles are reused for our Denner Book Award and the annual Battle of the Books House Competition, so they certainly are frequently read.


The next Scholastic Book Club deadline is Friday January 21 2022.  Here’s the link:

Please remember NOT to tick the box which asks if you work at the school, as it means it’s more difficult for DRHS to receive the Scholastic Credit.  Many thanks for your support!



If your child is struggling to find resources for projects or course work, please encourage them to contact me, so that I can show them how to utilise our online resources effectively.  I am always happy to do this.

Ms Carol Cordall, School Librarian

Follow the LRC on Twitter   @DRHS_LRC and Instagram   drhs_lrc




Aspens and Christmas Lunch


Our catering contractors Aspens are launching a new website.  The website changes have been implemented to improve customer experience, please use the link here for further information: Home – Aspens Services (

Following on from this, our restaurant team were very busy today and yesterday putting on our Christmas Lunches. Whether it was traditional turkey with all the trimmings or a vegetarian choice, our team worked incredibly hard to bring a little bit of Christmas to DRHS.

Christmas lunch

    Christmas lunch Christmas lunch



Gloucester Foodbank collection


Following on from our newsletter last week, our houses have been bringing items in for Gloucester Food bank. There is still time to donate (until the 13th December) and a list of items required can be found on the poster below.

Food bank collection

    food back collection food bank collection

food bank poster



Quiz Night


Last Friday saw the return of our Quiz Night, it was an evening full of fun, laughter (not just from the team names) and cheers. We raised roughly £600.00 and hope that those who attended enjoyed the evening as much as we did. 


  Quiz night



Useful Information


If your child is absent from school please email

If your child requires a medical/non-medical form please fill in via our website: Denmark Road High School - Forms  These forms can be emailed to or your child can give them in to the Well-being Centre.

When you come to pick up your child from reception please do not park outside the school gates or on any road markings which state you must not, on road junctions, or in front of private driveways.  Please park sensibly opposite the school.  If your child is ill and is unable to walk far, or you have problems with mobility, you may ring the bell on the gate and bring your car into the front car park.  Thank you for your consideration. 

Please let us know when you change your home address, mobile number or email address.  We cannot keep in touch with you if we do not have your correct details.  Please email changes to


Dates for the Diary


15th December - Carol Concert (Tickets on School Shop)

17TH December – End of Term 1:30pm finish

3rd January - Inset day

4th January - Start of Term


Finally, Follow me @DenmarkRoad365

Please follow me on Instagram at drhshead and Twitter @denmarkroad365.  You will see a snapshot into DenmarkRoad365 and the life of a Headteacher at one of the most amazing schools in the country.