Upper Shirley High

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“We love the signs all around your school which promote your values.” Visiting Colombian teachers

Headteacher's Blog

Funding: People first

14 March 2017

You may have read about school budget cuts in the local and national press. I want to reassure our community that there are no planned reductions in teachers or support staff at USH in the coming years. In... Read more

A pleasure and a privilege

2 January 2017

I have had the pleasure of Chairing the Southampton Education Forum (known as SEF) for the last two and a half years and in December I stood down to focus my efforts on Upper Shirley High’s... Read more

Inviting Applications

8 October 2016

I addressed prospective new students at our annual open morning event this month and was pleased to see so many families considering joining USH. Thank you.

I’ve heard it said that school 'prepares... Read more

Leading the charge

7 October 2016

At this point every year, I invite our middle leaders into my office to discuss their summer GCSE results and I’m compelled to post a blog for two reasons:

1. I don’t Tweet (Kim Kardashian et al... Read more

Lukewarm is no good

13 September 2016

'I began to realize how important it was to be an enthusiast in life. If you are interested in something, no matter what it is, go at is full speed, embrace it with both arms, hug it, love it and above all become... Read more

Sweet Sorrow

20 July 2016

Endings are difficult. For everyone. Endings bring out deeper feelings of loss and on an organisational level, there can be worry about how things will be different in the future. It’s in the nature of schools... Read more

We are Upper Shirley High

29 June 2016

Dear Students
The result of the EU Referendum has caused confusion and questions across our country.
Please know that a huge majority of our school and importantly the youngest... Read more

Splendid torch

10 May 2016

‘This is the true joy in life, being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one. Being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the... Read more

Making your mark

3 May 2016

I’ve often heard USH referred to as a family and three years into headship, I increasingly feel what people mean. More than a social unit consisting of adults and children, we are ‘closely related’... Read more

Energy of the mind

26 February 2016

It’s been a humbling month for Upper Shirley High. When Ofsted gave us our feedback following the recent inspection, they said: 

 “You are very ambitious for the success of... Read more


19 January 2016

Happy New Year.

In 1958, WH Auden wrote ‘Routine, in an intelligent person, is a sign of ambition.’

Schools thrive on routine yet no two days are the same.

I’m a big... Read more

Comfort and Joy

7 December 2015

It seems some of our students believe their generation invented abbreviated language. I point out that Winston Churchill was the first person to use the (now overused) common abbreviation... Read more

A special relationship

11 November 2015

When I was little, I remember when my Grandma came over to see the family, it was a big deal; the house was prepared and a special lunch assembled; she'd sit at the head of the table and I waited my turn... Read more

The balanced curriculum

21 October 2015

If art was easy and required no developed knowledge, skill or attribute to succeed, then wouldn't every painting be a masterpiece? every play a hit? every design faultless? every actor an... Read more

A teacher affects eternity

10 October 2015

Looking for a pathway into teaching?

'A teacher affects eternity; you never know when your influence stops'. This profound quote by Henry Adams is perfectly true and should be experienced to be fully... Read more

Welcome to the Headteacher's Blog

2 October 2015

I hold the privileged position of head of our school and it’s my job to make these years some of the best of our children’s lives; well-rounded, high achieving and characterful.

Welcome to my Blog.... Read more

“To my PE teacher: "Thank you for being such a great tutor and PE teacher and helping me through my five years at this school."”