USH Newsletter

6th March 2015

  • Introduction

    We are delighted to welcome Anita Bradshaw as SENCO and Julie Barlow as Personal Assistant for Inclusion.

    Anita says:
    ‘I am a very experienced special needs practitioner and hold a Master’s degree in Special Education Needs.  I have taught in several mainstream and special schools during my career. I have also presented at national conferences and in America.  Having recently moved to Southampton, I am delighted to be at USH and look forward to getting to know everyone.’

    Julie says
    ‘I look forward to using my skills to ensure our students to achieve well at Upper Shirley High through my new role as PA to the SENCO.  The school is a welcoming and friendly environment where I am excited to become a part of the team.’

    Tasnim Curtis (Assistant Head and Line Manager for Special Educational needs)

  • Rock Challenge 2015

    Whilst striving for excellence, are we getting closer?
    On 23rd February Upper Shirley High took part in the 2015 Rock Challenge event at Southampton Guildhall.

    Based on the Greek myth ‘Five Ages of Man’, this year’s entry was a partnership between the visual arts, drama and the dance departments which created one of the strongest dance and visual pieces ever produced for this event.

    We used Gustav Klimt as a starting point which contributed a strong artistic vision for the piece.  As a result Miss Cadle and her students delivered a beautifully crafted set with a wonderful design and texture.  This design enabled the vision to unfold in the dance.

    However the excellence in work did not stop there. This year Miss Kirk, in collaboration with the students, produced the most stunning costumes we have ever had for this event!  Make-up inspired by Gustav Klimt produced a fantastic look which complimented the overall appearance of the work.

    The lighting, designed by Mrs Moroney and Ben Conway, enhanced the story for the audience.  This year the students, along with Mr Jones and Miss Westley, collaborated on the choreography, producing a new look and feel to the movement. 

    Our students were due to perform last on the evening and as a result they delivered their best performance ever.  They performed with grace and flair and superbly applied all the difficult technical skills that they had spent months rehearsing.  You could visually see that the students had one goal in mind and they did us proud, coming away with the following awards:
    • Excellence in video performance
    • Excellence for costuming character
    • Award for performers’ choice.

    Although we didn’t attain a top spot, being awarded the performers’ choice confirms that the other competing schools recognised that our work is of the highest standard and respected by other schools within the community.  It also endorses the fact that we are getting closer to our goal because the team leading this project are constantly striving for excellence.

    Junior Jones, Dance teacher

  • Year 8 Geography P2is

    Once again our Year 8 Geographers have excelled themselves with their creativity and enthusiasm for their P2is on China. This year the students were given an extended piece of homework on the topic and they could chose to present their work in one of three ways; a Top Gear style challenge visiting at least five places in China that they had to research, which could be presented either as a large poster map or PowerPoint, or to create a China inspired board game.

    Once again we were inundated; students had clearly worked hard, as had family members, sourcing pin boards to attach work to and making dice and counters for board games. Students were able to peer assess the work of their classmates and it appears we not only have some talented Geographers, but also some budding board game designers!

    Victoria O'Sullivan, Geography Subject Leader

  • University Ambassador Student for Geography Department

    Luke Thurlow
    I am a third year student studying Geography at the University of Southampton and have recently finished my dissertation on town centre and high street redevelopment strategies.  As part of my studies I am undertaking the University Ambassador Scheme, a programme designed for University students to go into schools and gain an insight into teaching.

    I will be helping out in the Geography department at Upper Shirley High every Thursday until mid-May. Having been to China myself, I am working with Year 8 who are currently studying the impacts of globalisation and economic growth on the country.  I am also helping Year 11 students with their upcoming GCSE exams and will be running map skills workshops on Thursdays at lunchtime and after school.

  • Basketball Champions!

    The Year 11 basketball team played Kings’ School from Winchester in the final of the play offs on Monday 23rd February.  It was staged at the St Mary's sports hall and was a match containing much drama!

    At the end of the first quarter USH were losing by two points, at half time we were behind by six points, and by the end of the 3rd quarter things got worse with a twelve point deficit. However, the determination and fitness of the team resulted in them battling back to take the lead with just one minute 23 seconds left and then hang on to be victorious.

    Well done to all the team which included Lee Lloyd, Harjeet Bhakar, Raiven Oga, James Parker-Trott, Fabio Manuel, Jack Coster, Nick Willsher, Abraham Orekan, Raphael Amartey, Finley Talbot-Jones and Radoslaw Lasek.

  • Microsoft Office for Every Student!

    In order to help our students prepare for success, we’re providing Office to every student, free of charge, for the duration of their studies at Upper Shirley High.  With Office 365, your child will now have access to the latest version of Word, for writing; Excel, for spreadsheets; PowerPoint, for presentations; OneNote, for organization and note taking and much more.

    ·  Install on up to five compatible PCs and Macs, plus five tablets (including iPad!)
    ·  Gain valuable skills on the world’s most popular productivity software
    ·  Office subscription lasts for as long as the student is at USH.

    Just visit for further information and a link to register.

  • Boxing Taster Session

    We took ten students to Richard Taunton College to have a boxing taster session with the Taunton’s boxing academy.  Students had a go at hooks, jabs and footwork and were put through their paces. The college will be setting up a brand new satellite club for boxing, with details to follow.  If you are interested please speak to the PE department.

  • Opportunity to see Netball Stars in Action!

    On February 14th 2015 we took fifteen students to watch Surrey Storm vs Celtic Dragons in a netball Superleague match at the Guildford Spectrum Sports Centre.  It was an opportunity for the students to see international players and umpires, which proved to be an enlightening opportunity.

    Students were able to take a tour around the world class facilities which included an Olympic size swimming pool, four sports halls, indoor climbing wall and ten squash courts.  Surrey Storm won convincingly and we came away inspired to try some new ideas for warm ups and during our games.  We will look to arrange another trip to see Surrey Storm next year so watch this space.

    Claire Marks and Claire Sidney, PE department

  • Year 7 and Year 8 Netball

    Year 7: we were faced with lots of students who were ill last week, but were saved by Amelia Brindley-Wootten, Holly Whyte and Kosheen McCarthy who stepped up for the netball team and did a valiant job.  The girls played Cantell and won 18-3, and St Anne’s and lost 6-3.  They all worked very hard and did USH proud.

    The girls demonstrated excellent teamwork at Tuesday night’s matches where they played Redbridge and The Gregg School.  Having already lost to Greggs 11-1 previously the girls knew it would be a tough game, however they beat Redbridge 15-0 and then Greggs 6-4.  A valiant effort all round: well done!

    The Year 8 girls showed yet more quality in their play this season by beating Sholing 14-1 and Bitterne 11-1.  They currently stand unbeaten in the league so far and I hope this continues throughout the season.

    Claire Marks, PE department

  • Students on School Site after 2.40pm

    We are writing to you to confirm our expectations regarding students on the school site after 2.40pm.

    All students are expected to leave the school site unless they are involved in an extracurricular after school activity, or are being supervised by teaching staff in a Period 6 session.
    Whilst we are proud of our extra-curricular offer, the school cannot adequately supervise students remaining in school without our knowledge or a legitimate reason for being here. Therefore, we are ensuring all of our students are aware of this and we would further appreciate your support in reinforcing this message.

    Many thanks.

  • March is Recycling month at USH!

    Throughout March USH is running a house competition around the theme of recycling.

    Students are being encouraged to bring in batteries, plastic milk bottle tops, clothes and shoes. Each item brought in will be rewarded with house points!

    If your son or daughter would like to help their house win the competition they can bring items in and give them to their tutor during tutor time.

    The Eco Council will be overseeing the competition and counting up the totals during the last week of term.

    All items brought in for recycling will be sent on to relevant organisations afterwards with all clothes/shoes going to the Air Ambulance.

    For more information about recycling please go to

  • Paris 2015

    Paris 2015

    Current Year 7s have had an assembly and been given letters about the  visit to Paris in Year 8.  This will run on the 15th to 18th October 2015.  Deposits can be given to the finance office by 20th March.

    For current Year 8s, final preparations are under way and students will be bringing home important information about the itinerary and emergency contact numbers in the next two weeks.  If you have any questions or concerns, please raise these as soon as possible.  Any medical or dietary issues should must be passed on as a matter of urgency.

    Please get in touch if you have any questions.

  • Our Next Newsletter

    The next edition of the USH newsletter will be published during the week commencing 23rd March, as a result of all staff attending the JET Conference for our cluster of schools on 20th March.

  • Dates for Your Diaries

    Friday 13th March, 7pm in school hall – PTFA Quiz Night, Hollywood Bollywood theme
    Thursday 25th June, 6.30pm – Year 11 Prom at the Ageas Bowl

    Wednesday 1st, Thursday 2nd and Friday 3rd July, 7.00pm - 'We Will Rock You', school production at The Point Eastleigh

    Inset day/school closure date for this academic year:
    Friday 20th March (JET Conference)

    Dates of parents’ evenings:
    Tuesday 10th March – Year 7 parents’ evening 1 (*as a result of feedback USH has given an additional earlier opportunity for Year 7 parents to come and meet teachers)
    Tuesday 24th March – 4.00-7.30pm Year 8 parents’ evening (*please note change of date)
    Wednesday 1st April – Year 8 Options evening
    Thursday 23rd April – 4.00-7.30pm Year 10 parents’ evening
    Thursday 18th June – 4.00-7.30pm Year 7 parents’ evening 2
    Tuesday 30th June – New intake parents’ induction evening