USH Newsletter

4th July 2014

  • USH Open for Years 7 and 8 only on Thursday 10th July

    Due to industrial strike action by teachers and support staff Upper Shirley High will open for Years 7 and 8 only on Thursday 10th July.  Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

  • Introduction

    As the end of the year draws ever close, the pace at Upper Shirley High continues to accelerate.

    I enjoyed meeting Mr Woods this week with Mr Aiden Harvey (Year 9) who was ‘Acting Headteacher for the day’.  I would like to congratulate Aiden, and I am certain he will make an excellent headteacher in the future.

    I have developed an Excellence Award from our Cleanliness Award. This development now looks at developing pride, respect and courteous behaviour between students and staff, and is also designed to increase punctuality between lessons.

    On Tuesday evening we had the pleasure of meeting our Year 7 students for September.  In addition to this evening, the students had a further two transition days.  The students commented on how much they are looking forward to joining USH in September, and how much they enjoyed the two days.  I would like to congratulate Mr Tanihatu on producing such a smooth and successful transition timetable.

    There are a number of trips and activities between now and the end of term.  This week I had the distinct pleasure in attending the school production of ‘Starlight Express’ and would like to congratulate all of the staff and students involved in producing such a memorable production: it was a fantastic piece of work.

    We also say a final farewell to our Year 11 students at their Annual Prom, to be held this year at Chilworth Manor on Tuesday 8th July.  We eagerly anticipate their exam results in August, and look forward to toasting their successes.

    Our Reward Trip to Thorpe Park is on Friday 11th July.  This recognises students’ progress and achievement over the year.  This trip is much more in line with our values and replaces our activity week.

    Our annual Awards Evening is also fast approaching.  This will be held at Central Hall, and is on Thursday 17th July.  The next day is our School Sports Day which is held at Southampton Sports Centre.  This is the event in the sporting calendar.  I took forward to seeing as many parents as possible at these events.

    David Wilding, Assistant Headteacher

  • Headteacher for a Day!

    Aiden Harvey, Year 9, wrote to Mr Woods saying he would like to become ‘Headteacher for a day’ as he hoped to become a head himself in the future.

    So, Aiden came into school last Friday smartly dressed in a suit and tie, and took on the role alongside Mr Woods.

    Aiden wrote to thank staff after his day:

    “I would like to thank all members of staff for allowing me to become part of your day.  Thank you to all the senior staff for letting me sit in on your meetings.  I would also like to thank members of staff for telling me and Mr Woods all about the new things you are going to be doing.

    I enjoyed visiting Shirley Infant School sports day out on the field because there was a nice atmosphere.  Everyone seemed to be having so much fun and all the children were shouting out their chants in encouragement.

    I had a meeting with Mr Wilding and Mr Woods and we talked about the new behaviour policies.

    Today I have also
    • decided on the new planner;
    • discussed recruitment;
    • signed the budget for 2014/2015;
    • observed a lesson (thank you, Ms Dibden) and given feedback;
    • enjoyed two cups of tea and an egg sandwich;
    • met with the Head of Wordsworth Primary School and our new History Subject Leader, Mr Farley.

    I have a few ideas of my own
    • a megaphone for fire drills so that people at the back can hear clearly;
    • a tannoy announcement system around the school;
    • a common room for students to relax in and maybe even have a cup of tea;
    • a stage area for outside shows;
    • more bins spread around the school;
    • consideration to bring back Business Studies in the future.

    I'd still like to become a Headteacher!"

  • JET Music Prom

    This year sees the inaugural Jefferys Education Trust Music Prom.  This concert will bring together students from across all of the local schools and give everyone an opportunity to perform together.  The performance will be held at Southampton Central Hall on Wednesday 16th July at 7pm.

    Tickets are available from all of the schools in JET from 1st July and cost £4 for adults and £2.50 for children/concessions. 

    This Music Prom will be a wonderful opportunity to hear a wide range of music and to celebrate the musical endeavours of our students. I look forward to seeing you there.

    Phil Griffiths, Head of Music

  • Invitation to Art Department Summer Exhibition

    The Art department are proud to invite you to our Summer exhibition.

    Everyone is very welcome to come along to see the best of this year's art work on Monday 21st July at 3-5pm in the USH Gallery. 

  • USH Raises Over £1000 for the British Heart Foundation!

    USH hosted the first day of the JET Cluster British Heart Foundation Jump Rope Skipathon on June 26th 2014.  USH alone raised an incredible £1000+ on this day.  Years 7-9 were invited to take part in a sponsored hour skipping event.  Years 7 and 8 were assisted by sports prefects who later on had their own sponsored slot.  Students were in friendship groups of up to six members and had to keep their skipping rope moving for the entire duration of the session!  They were only allowed up to twenty seconds break when changing over their formation, rope size or the active skipper.

    The students tried many different styles of skipping and tricks they had learnt from prefects or the cards provided.  All students entered the event in the greatest spirit and took extreme pride in trying to raise the most money from friends, family and teachers.

    Our top two teams for each year:
    Year 7
    BANANNNNAH!!!x (who raised £190.56). Team members: Mollie Fay, Izzy Singh, Charlie Browne, Molly Oxley and Mollie-Mae Brewer.
    SKIP BRUR!! (£117) Poppy Hammond, Mia Daniel, Leigh Collins, Freya Barfoot and Chloe Parkinson.
    Year 8
    Disney Princesses (£179.67) Molly Robinson, Imogen Reynolds, Tabitha Read, Lara Williams, Matilda Bull, Rachel King and Oliwia Kowalik.
    Sports 4 Life (£60.15) Amber Fry, Poppy Young, Kaitlyn Smith-Willis, Jessica Harrison, Cassidy Smith and Wiktoria Kopczynska.
    Year 9
    GALKK (£96.50) Lily Thorne, Gemma Carr, Kelly Barlow, Kelly Whitfield and Angel Sumajit.
    CEELE (£23.10) Charlotte White, Ellie Lambeth, Elena Genovese, Laurie Pugh and Ella Marsh Collins.

    Our top individual: Molly Robinson raised an incredible £100 all by herself!!!  Massive congratulations to Molly and a thank you from the PE department both to her and her sponsors.

    Students who individually raised over £50:  Well done to Molly Oxley, Mollie Fay, Izzy Singh, Molly Robinson, Kelly Barlow who all received a free electronic skipping rope from the BHF as a thank you.

    While the USH students held their event in the gym, Shirley Infant School used USH facilities and prefects to run their own BHF Jump Rope.  Well done to all students and parents who facilitated this event.  Shirley Junior School will hold their own event in the autumn term.

    Well done to all and thank you for a wonderful day and raising such a large amount for an important cause.

    Claire Sidney, PE department

  • Upper Shirley Pie - First Edition

    This term a small team of Year 7s (Reiner Rillo, Alfred Stone, Harrison Pitts and Frankie Ryan) have been working hard to produce the first edition of ‘Upper Shirley Pie’, our new school magazine.  The students decided the theme for this issue should be ‘Starlight Express’, which is the focus for the front cover of the magazine.  The team have written their own articles, as well as including work from students from all year groups.  Mr Harvey showed the team how to input their work into a programme that has resulted in a colourful, visually-appealing magazine.  The team hope everyone enjoys reading it!.

    Reiner commented, “It was quite hard as it was only a small team working on it, but I am happy with what we produced and I had fun making it”.

    Why not add your own ingredients to the next edition of Upper Shirley Pie?

    Please click on this link to read the very first copy

  • Face Painting Workshops

    Over two sessions after school Year 7 and Year 8 students have been learning the skills of face painting. They have created some amazing faces! Miss De Ruiter and Mrs Cadle were impressed with the results and will definitely repeat this after school activity.

  • Year 10 Geographers Visit Lepe Beach

    It was another busy week for the Geography department last week as Year 10 Geographers visited Lepe Beach on Friday as part of the preparations for their Controlled Assessment.  Whilst at the beach the sixty-six Geographers mastered the techniques of collecting data to show the gradient of the beach using various pieces of equipment, including a clinometer. They then used the measurements and data collected to draw up the beach profiles in the classroom at Lepe. They also examined different types of coastal management and defences and considered why certain areas of the coastline are protected in different ways.

    The day was a great success as the students were able to become familiar with the fieldwork techniques they will be using when they visit the Dorset coastline in September for the Controlled Assessment.  They also gained confidence in presenting their findings. It was a great day, the students were a credit to the school and we are looking forward to our trip in September.

    This academic year almost four hundred of our Geography students have had an out-of-classroom experience, be that a map skills walk in the local area, a trip to Lepe or Kew Gardens or representing the school at quizzes or conferences.  Fieldwork is a key part of our Geography Department vision and we hope to continue with this next year.

    “Great day to spend outside. I think everyone enjoyed themselves and it was a good experience to explore Lepe.”  (Kitti Bojte)
    • “It was interesting learning about beach profiles and a fun day out.” (Anna Dampier)
    • “It was great to see the real examples of geographical features that we had studied in the classroom. The trip will help us to get more marks in our Geography controlled assessment” (Zachary Bull)

    Victoria O'Sullivan, Geography department

  • 'What is Happening to the Environment?' by Beth Wellman, Year 9

    Year 9 Philosophy and Ethics students were asked to write a speech to highlight their concerns about what is happening to the environment.  Here is a great example from Beth Wellman.

    “Look. Listen. Can you hear the birds in the trees? The fish in the sea? The children singing and reciting nursery rhymes? Can you see the trees towering? The dolphins leaping? The children running and playing?

    No. Because there are no birds in the trees, no fish in the sea, no dolphins and no children. Two million children under the age of 5 die every year (that’s 5479 children every day) due to dirty water.  27,000 species become extinct every year. That’s around 73 every day. Why? Because we are blind. Blind and deaf to the horror around us. The horror that we are causing through our selfishness. Humans long for bright lights throughout the cities, the best phones, the shiniest cars. We take and take but never give, not even a thought. Not even a penny. If every person gave one thought, one pound, we would have the birds, the fish, the dolphins and the children.

    We are the children of yesterday and the death of tomorrow, but we have the potential to be the heroes of today. If we recycle our phones, our clothes and our cars, use them for another need, then maybe those piles of junk, those poisoned lakes and those grieving mothers would be no more. Imagine how much more space there would be.  Imagine our children and our children’s children and all they would be able to enjoy. Do you really want rhinos and gorillas to be something they just read about?

    Is it just a fairy tale?  If we don’t change now then our world won’t have it’s happy ever after.”

    by Beth Wellman

  • Jessamyn's Catering Talent

    Jessamyn Berry followed in the footsteps of Oliver Watkins last year (featured in a previous newsletter) and produced the famous Paul Hollywood 8 strand plait in her Catering lesson.

    Great to see such ambition and talent from this Year 8 student. Well done Jessamyn!

    Joseph Davies, Catering department

  • DofE Expedition

    Congratulations to a number of Year 11 students who have now submitted all the relevant sections to complete their Bronze DofE award. Everything has been sent off for the final stamp of approval before a certificate and badge are issued.

    Year 9 students are now planning their practice weekend, brushing up on skills such as learning emergency procedures, making up a kit list and menus for while they are out and going over map reading and navigation skills, as well as planning the activity they will need to do when they are out on their assessed weekend.

    As there are a large number of students participating this year we have had to split them into three smaller groups with each group going out on different days.  Each student has received a letter with the dates and information they require regarding their practice expedition date.  The first group will be going out during the week beginning 14th July with the second and third groups during the final week before the end of the term.  All participants will be taken by minibus to the start point for their practice and brought back to school the following day.  All groups have done emergency procedures training and will have emergency contact details with them in case they need to contact a member of the staff.

    Jenny Murphy, DofE Coordinator

  • Well Done U13 Rounders Team

    The U13 Rounders team ended their season with a win against St George by 18½-4!

    A fantastic way to end the season: well done to Alice Orr, Molly Robinson, Jazz Berry, Georgia O’Dell, Olivia O’Mahony, Beth McConnell, Kayleigh Betteridge, Chloe Field, Lilly Rapley and Flo Stone.

    Claire Marks, PE department

  • Boulogne 2014

    We have received the collective passport so are good to go!!!  You should have received a letter requesting how your son or daughter will get home from school: we need written confirmation of this as we are returning so late at night. 

    We would also ask for the EHIC cards that can be used in case of any form of medical emergency. 

    Finally, for those travelling on their own passport, could you please bring these in before we depart? 

    Any questions, please contact me at school. 

    Martin Perry, Languages department

  • Paris 2015

    You should have had a letter from your son or daughter regarding the proposed change of dates for the Paris visit to the 26th - 29th March 2015.  If you haven’t already done so, please contact me via email stating if these dates suit or not.  Alternatively, please ask your son or daughter to collect a letter from me and complete the reply slip as soon as possible.  Once we have confirmed numbers, we should be able to confirm the final cost and inform you of future payments dates.

    If you have any queries or would like the letter emailed to you please do not hesitate to contact me.

    Martin Perry, Languages department

  • Science Club

    In Science Club we’ve been learning about copper plating: the process in which a layer of copper is deposited on an item to be plated by using an electric current.  We set up a circuit with a solution of copper sulphate in sulphuric acid using a copper strip as the anode (positive electrode).  This was purified during the electrolysis process and plated onto a 5p coin at the cathode as pure copper metal. 

    Students in Years 7 and 8, if you are interested in some fun Life Experiments and Tower Building, then come along to Science Club after school on Tuesday afternoons!

  • Community Games at St James Park this Weekend!

    The Community Games event at St James Park, Southampton, promises to be an amazing spectacle, bringing the local community together to celebrate and try out a range of sporting and cultural activities.

    The event is on Saturday 5th July (12-6pm) and Sunday 6th July (11am-3pm) and entry is free.

    Activities will include opening and closing ceremony, sports from football challenges to boccia to a skipping workshop, old school games, cheer leaders, arts and crafts, henna tattoos, food stalls from different countries, choirs, brass bands, street art workshop and many more.

    For more information visit

    Please come on foot if you can as parking is very restricted.

  • Help us Win National Book Tokens!

    Please help us win £5000 of National Book Tokens for the school library - and get £100 for yourself! Just enter the prize draw online, it only takes a minute:

    Spread the word: the more entries for our school, the more chances of winning!  £5000 is enough to buy hundreds of books for the school library.

  • Donation of Clothes for PTA Fashion Show

    Are you having a wardrobe clear out?  The PTA would be very grateful for donations of clothes for the 'Worn Again Fashion Show'.  This will be held at the Ladies Night on Thursday 10th July.

    If you have any good quality clothes, shoes or accessories which you would be prepared to donate to raise funds for the school mini-bus appeal please bring them to the school office.  Any unsold clothes will be given to charity.

    The PTA

  • Southampton Family Fun Sports Day, 26th July

    Southampton Sport are working together with ActiveNation to provide a family fun sports day at Southampton Sports Centre on Saturday 26th July 2014, starting at 11.00 am.

    There will be a big variety of sports available, including wheelbarrow races, egg and spoon, sprints, long jump and a football tournament.

    There will also be a Village Fete with activities and stalls, including inflatables for both children and adults! 

    For more details, or to book your sports, please have a look on their website

  • Dates for Your Diaries

    Dates to note:
    Tuesday 8th July – Year 10 Sports Day
    Tuesday 8th July - Year 11 Prom
    Thursday 10th July – PTA Ladies Night
    Wednesday 16th July – 7pm JET Schools Music Prom, Central Hall
    Thursday 17th July – 6.30pm Awards Evening at Central Hall, Southampton
    Friday 18th July – Years 7-9 Sports Day
    Tuesday 22nd July – 7pm, Parent Action Group social/wrap-up
    Wednesday 23rd July - School breaks up for Summer holidays

    Tuesday 2nd September – Inset day
    Wednesday 3rd September – Year 7 and Year 11 return to school
    Thursday 4th September – Years 8, 9 and 10 return to school
    Saturday 27th September – Open Morning