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USH Newsletter 1st May 2015


After a highly successful year of fundraising, the school has just been presented with a cheque for £5,000 from our PTFA; this is to go towards the purchase of a second school minibus. Thank you to everyone who played a part in this fundraising!  I would encourage parents to join in with their future fundraising plans – the committee are always looking for new parents to help with PTFA events.  The next fundraiser is a Summer Barn dance planned for July.

Those of you who have been into school for parents' evening will have seen our newly refurbished canteen.  We have removed the café style seating and replaced it with more flexible seating units which have  significantly increased the number of students who can dine in the canteen.  We also have a new chef, Carl Galdins, a Gordon Ramsay trained chef, and an exciting new summer menu.  More details to follow in our next newsletter.

We are saying goodbye to Miss O’Sullivan and Mr Curtis. We wish them well in their new endeavours.  We will shortly be introducing our new team members to the school community.

It’s the beginning of the exam season for our Year 11s who have been working really hard. Good luck to you all, you deserve great success!

Julie Prince, School Business Manager

Visit to Houses of Parliament

Twenty-two students from the Learning Leadership Council visited the Houses of Parliament on Tuesday for an informative, interesting and educational tour.  Students explored the Palace of Westminster, learning about the history of Parliament and the art and architecture of the buildings which have come to be so recognised.  The experience was great for students to learn about how Parliament was created and how it works today, particularly as the general election grows closer.

The tour consisted of The House of Commons and the House of Lords, Westminster Hall and the Central Lobby.  Students were buzzing with ideas of how Parliamentary democracy could be implemented at USH School!

Dan Hughes, Learning Leadership Council coordinator

USH Book Quiz

On Wednesday 1st April, the USH Library hosted the 7th annual Book Quiz, involving Year 5 and Year 6 students from Hollybrook and Shirley Juniors, and some of our keenest readers in Year 7.  Each group of students had been asked to read a particular book, and on the day we created teams of five, comprising a student from each year from each school.  As an ice-breaker the teams had to think of a team name: we had some pretty wacky names!

The teams answered questions on all the books, plus general book knowledge questions, and a book covers picture round.  It was a pleasure to see so many enthusiastic readers of all ages in one place. 

Prizes of books and chocolate were awarded to the three highest scoring teams. The winning team was ‘Born to be Wild’.  Thanks to the USH students involved: Andrew Carr, Amrit Chahal, Heather Doswell, Molly Ellis, Benji Graf, Adam Hodges, Tamsin Mittoo, Harry Price, and Abi White, and to Lydia Nutting from Year 8 who helped with the running of the quiz.  They were all fantastic ambassadors for the school.

Andrew Carr said, “The annual USH Book Quiz 2015 was really fun. I enjoyed working with different people from different schools and age groups.”
Harry Price said, “I enjoyed the Book Quiz because it allowed us to meet with younger students to discuss reading with them.”

Rosina Mount, Senior Librarian

The Faraday Challenge

On 31st March, thirty four students from Year 8 took part in the Faraday Challenge – a day-long STEM workshop.  The event, run by the Institute for Engineering and Technology, saw students pitted against each other in six teams to design and build a beacon to convey travel information to cyclists commuting to work.
Students were each given an individual role within their team to ensure the successful running of the project.  They had to construct a working prototype of their beacons, designing and 3D printing their outer casings, electrically engineering their circuitry, and all on a strict budget managed by each team’s accountant.  This was followed by a Dragon’s Den style presentation of their work in front of their peers.

All of this made for a formidable task, but our students rose to the challenge and produced a product to be proud of.  A great effort was shown by all, but in the end the green team were chosen as victors after presenting their fantastic traffic warning design, which showed great organisation and teamwork.  Congratulations to Mollie-Mae Brewer, Will Pettit, Matt Eldridge, Vincent White and Hazel Callaway!

Overall, each student should be justly proud of their achievements on the day, and they will surely remember this exciting insight into the world of engineering as a highlight of the school year.

The Science department

Paris, March 2015

Paris was as amazing as ever – the ferry crossing was not so memorable but we had good weather allowing us to make the most of the city and, of course, Disney!  It is only right to leave it to the students…

“I loved Paris because I adored Disneyland!  I also really liked going to the top of the Eiffel Tower and seeing lots of sights in the centre of Paris!”

“Paris was amazing.  Disneyland was great, especially the studios with the Tower of Terror and Aerosmith; unfortunately Space Mountain was shut.  However, going through Paris was amazing, the top of the Eiffel Tower had a great view; also the hotel was fun.”

“Paris was fantastic!  The view from the Eiffel Tower was stunning, you could almost see the entire city!”

Role on October 2015 for the current Year 7s!!

Martin Perry, Languages department

What a Day to be in Southampton - Half Marathon

Congratulations from us all at USH to two of our staff who completed the Southampton Half Marathon last Sunday!

“The atmosphere in Southampton for the first ABP Southampton Half Marathon was absolutely electric!  This is the first time the city has held this size of event in decades.  Six thousand runners pounded the streets of the city being cheered on by thousands of spectators, including many USH students. I ran past students who were with their Scout troops, with bowlfuls of jelly beans in hand to offer to passing runners. 

Students from USH were also there supporting with their cheerleading squad and I approached the end of the race in Guildhall Square with the yell of, 'Go on Miss Cox!' ringing in my ears!  It was a fantastic race that I enjoyed even more so because of the students who had sacrificed their Sunday morning to come out and support us.  I couldn’t have finished it without them” said Rhian Cox, Teaching Assistant.

Kashla Robinson, Senior Science Technician commented, “As Southampton was hosting its first half marathon in over thirty years and lots of friends were entering, I also wanted to be part of this fantastic event on 26th April.

Having run only as far as 10k before, I was doubtful about whether a half-marathon (21.1k) was possible, but the thought of having a personal challenge was my motivation to start training.  The day before the race, I felt very nervous and I found myself thinking ‘Why did I enter this?’  However, I am pleased to say that I ran the race with my long-standing friend (a seasoned runner) and between her enthusiasm and on-going support from family, spectators and volunteers I made it to the finish line.

It was a fantastic day that brought the city together with bands playing, people cheering and holding signs amid such a good atmosphere.  Despite the brief post-run stiffness, I feel extremely pleased to have entered, trained and completed my first half-marathon in my home city.”

St James Park Mayor's Reception

On the 1st April I was invited to represent Upper Shirley High at a Mayor's reception and afternoon tea.

The Right Worshipful the Mayor of Southampton, Councillor Sue Blatchford, formally presented me with a copy of  ‘St James Park Book’ in honour of the work  USH Art Department had contributed  to the renovation of St James Park.  USH students had  worked with artist Anna Vickers to create ideas for a mural.

The book is a colour publication full of photographs, old postcards, and fascinating information about the park and the local area.  It contains a potted history of the park, the story of those Edwardians who strived to provide a recreation ground for Shirley, a 1907 photo of the original recreation ground opening, the story behind how FoSJP (http://www.fosjp.org.uk/fsjp_about.html) was started, the park's renovation, and memories and photos of the park from 1920 to the present day.  A copy of the book will be held in the school library for students to learn about their local history.

Mariella De Ruiter, Subject Leader for Art

USH e-Safety Update

We are pleased to announce a new e-Safety section on our school website. This can be assessed under the Parent tab.

The online world is a wonderful place for young people to explore, with unprecedented opportunities for learning and creativity, but like the real world there are risks and dangers we all need to be aware of.  Our aim is to promote the safe use of ICT, Social Media and the Internet, through developing awareness, and by providing access to help and advice for all members of our school community.

Our new e-Safety website page contains lots of useful information for parents and students, with links to a number of other e-Safety sites. Please log in to find ’live’ e-Safety news stories, links to online digital e-Safety magazines, tips on social media security and privacy settings, and links to e-Safety information and websites aimed at promoting the safe use of the internet.  You will also be able to see information for teachers and governors about the new computing curriculum and the role we all play in e-Safety. There are resources and links for everyone!

Most importantly, the e-Safety section of the USH website will inform you on what to do and who to contact in the event that you, or someone you know, has been affected by any aspect of e-Safety. This includes topics such as cyberbullying, mobile phone safety, online gaming, exposure to inappropriate materials, sexting, online grooming and concerns in chat rooms.  We also provide information on how to report social media abuse or remove online content to protect your Digital Footprint.

Together we will help create a safer internet.

Connel Rock, IT Development Manager

Careers News

Composite Boat Building Apprenticeships
Green Marine, in partnership with Southampton City Council, are holding an apprenticeship event at Hythe Marina on 5th May from 14.00.

If you would like to find out about composite boat builder apprenticeships for young people, talk to current and past apprentices and tour the boat yard you can get free attendance tickets at: http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/green-marine-apprentice-discovery-tickets-16235259097 or email lori.foster@greenmarine.co.uk.

Year 7 University of Southampton Visit
This was an opportunity for a group of Year 7 students to visit a Russell Group University to find out about courses offered, tour the campus, talk to current students about their university experience and take part in interactive quizzes about HE.

Students were asked how the visit will help with their learning:
Hassan:  “It will help me as I will try harder in order to get to uni.”
Kosheen: “If you work harder you can choose what you want to do.”
Olivia:  “I know if I want to get the job I want I will have to work hard to get the qualifications.  I have learnt more about the social and leisure side of university as well as knowing there is a wider range of subject choices than I thought.  The possibilities are amazing!”

Year 10 Work Experience
The deadline for returning completed work experience forms has been extended to Tuesday, 5th May.

Work experience provides an invaluable insight into life after school and informs future choices.  Please support your son/daughter in securing a placement.

Carey Anderson, Careers Adviser

Netball News

The last evening in March saw the U12 team compete for the Southampton Cup against all the teams in the league.  It was a windy and cold evening, and the girls showed great determination and team spirit.

The results were:
• USH 3 vs St George 2
• USH 6 vs Redbridge 2
• USH 2 vs St Anne’s 3
• USH 1 vs Sholing 0
• USH 3 vs The Gregg School 2.

We finished in 2nd place!  Well done!

Claire Marks, PE department

The U13 Results for the season:
• USH 6 vs Cantell 1
• USH 7 vs St George 2
• USH 5 vs The Gregg School 6
• USH 8 vs St Anne’s 7
• USH 10 vs Sholing 1
• USH 4 vs Cantell 3
• USH 14 vs Sholing 1
• USH 11 vs Bitterne 1
• USH 1 vs The Gregg School 6
• USH 5 vs St Anne’s 2
• USH 8 vs St George 5
• USH 16 vs Bitterne 4
• USH 1 vs St George 1
• USH 5 vs Cantell 4
• USH 8 vs Sholing 1
• USh 4 vs St Anne’s 1

An excellent season: the girls were a real credit to themselves and the school, performing to the highest standard and showing great sportsmanship throughout.

They are the 2014-2015 league winners and overall scored 113 goals and only conceded 46!  An incredible effort!

Congratulations to the team: Freya Barfoot, Maisie Bolton, Charlie Browne, Millie Clark, Abigail Goldstraw, Katie Hilliard, Erin McManus and Miasy Parkes.

Claire Sidney, PE department

Recycling Competition

After several lunchtimes spent counting bottle tops, batteries, shoes and clothes the results of the Recycling competition are in:

• Mariners – 2189 items
• Venturers – 1666 items
• Aviators – 1354
• Engineers – 334

As a result of everyone’s efforts we were able to divert 5543 items from landfill!

The Eco Council would like to thank everyone who contributed to the campaign.

USH Win Recycling Competition
The Eco Council were delighted to find out this week that USH have won a prize in the Southampton City Council ‘Bin it to Win it’ campaign which encourages schools across the city to recycle effectively.

The competition is sponsored by IKEA who have awarded us a £300 IKEA voucher for our efforts!

Lots more exciting Eco news on the way!

Eco Council and Sam Mawby 

Paris October 2015

We have over eighty current Year 7 students wanting to go to Paris in October – another huge number!  If there are people who still want to go, we may be able to fit you in. 

We’ve managed to secure a discount and so the price has come in at £305, this is less than anticipated.  A letter with payment details will be on its way to you if you haven’t already had one.  The trip will need to be paid for in full by early July with a part payment due in June: this is in accordance with the tour company.  With the online payment system, you will of course be able to stagger payments to suit you.

There will be a meeting for parents during the summer term where we will ask you to bring in passport information and you will find out more about the itinerary and what students should bring with them.

Any queries, please get in touch. 

Thanks, Mr Perry, Martin.Perry@ushschool.org

Friday Ballet Classes

We are going to be starting a Ballet class every Friday afternoon from May until the end of the school year in July.  Anita Bradshaw, our recently appointed SENCo, who trained as a Ballet dancer at a Russian Ballet boarding school until the age of 17, would like to offer the opportunity to students from all years, male and female, to join the class with her on Fridays during period 6 from 2:45pm until 4pm.

This will be a formal dance class.  While we expect to enjoy the sessions, as with classical music, classical dance requires dedication and commitment.

If students are interested in this opportunity, they should ask their tutor for a form, or call into LS and talk to Mrs Bradshaw.  A consent form for staying on during period 6 will need to be signed.

Vacancy: School Catering Assistant

Our Company vision for Chartwells is Great People, Great Service, Great Results and we believe your contribution is crucial to the success of the business. To achieve our vision we live by the values of Integrity, Team work, Passion, Can-Do and Responsibility.

The Position
The school dining facility caters for many students, providing nutritional food and friendly service. The duties for this role will include serving students in a polite and friendly manner, basic food preparation and ensuring kitchen and service areas are kept clean, tidy and safe. Other duties will include taking an active part in any unit sales promotions.

The Person
• Ability to promote a welcoming environment where our colleagues, clients and students receive great service
• Polite and friendly
• Good Customer Care skills
• Neat and tidy in appearance
• Awareness of Hygiene standards
• A 'can do' attitude, prepared to help out the rest of the team in a willing and positive manner
• Able to work in a busy environment
• Good command of the English Language

The Benefits
Compass Group UK & Ireland offers excellent career and development opportunities and as an organisation that's proud of its great people, we believe in the opportunity to recognise and share success: that's why we offer a competitive salary, pension scheme and life assurance, sick pay, and company discounts.
We have two positions which will be term-time only, one for 4 hours per day and one for 2 hours per day to cover the busy lunch period.

For any queries please call Carl Galdins, Catering Manager, Upper Shirley High School Kitchen – 023 8032 5333.
Please apply in writing (with a CV if possible) to  86794@compass-group.co.uk.

Cleaning Vacancy

We are looking for a hardworking, reliable and trustworthy person who has high standards and takes pride in their work to join us as a cleaner for four hours a day (2pm to 6pm).  The rate of pay is £7.05 to £7.10 per hour.  Please see our full advert on the website http://uppershirleyhigh.org/staff_vacancies.

If you have any queries please contact Julie Prince, Business Manager, Julie.prince@ushschool.org.

Summer Medical Matters

Now we have moved into the Summer Term, it is the time of sunshine and high pollen and summer sports outside.  Please can you make sure your child is carrying their inhaler and water at all times.  Spare Antihistamines can be left in the Medical Room if a medication form is completed and signed by the parent in order to give the First Aider permission to administer.  Please find the form at the following link http://uppershirleyhigh.org/letters_and_forms or one can be collected from the General Office. 

If your child is asthmatic, besides ensuring they carry an inhaler in their bag at all times, there is space in the Medical Room to hold a spare (please label and hand in to Mrs Kelly).

In extreme hot weather it is also advisable for students to have sun protection, ie sun cream and hat, especially when doing a lot of outdoor activities.

Sainbury’s Active Kids is back!!

The USH PE department would like to ask for your help again.

Last year we collected over 15,000 Active Kids vouchers which helped us buy plenty of new equipment. We are asking you to help us again this year please and donate any vouchers collected up until 5th May 2015.

Students and parents can hand in vouchers at the collection box at front reception.  If possible we would love to beat last year’s total.  Thank you for your contributions!

USH PE department

Used Postage Stamps

Many thanks to those of you who have sent in your used postage stamps. Four packages of them have already been sent to the RNIB to fund Guide Dogs for the Blind.  Please continue to give your stamps to Reception in order for us to continue helping in this way.  A 1cm border should be left around the stamps when they are removed from the envelopes.

Communicating with USH when your Child is Unwell

It is very important to inform the school if your child is going to be absent. 

We have also installed an automatic communication system that will allow you to contact us directly by text message in order to keep the school updated with any information regarding attendance, for example:
• absences
• lateness
• general enquires about your child’s attendance.

Our school’s dedicated mobile number is 07860 005 066. Please confirm your child’s name at the start of your text. 

We will be able to text back using the system; the aim is to free up time in the attendance office.  During busy hours the staff receive many phone calls asking questions that are not of an urgent nature, so by using Text Messages In you will be helping the school. 

Otherwise you can report any absence directly to the Attendance Officer, Alison Small, on 023 8052 2721.

Thank you.

Alison Small, Attendance Officer

Medical Appointments

If your son/daughter needs to leave school during the day for a medical appointment, please contact our Attendance Officer, Alison Small, on telephone number 023 80522721 prior to the appointment.  For safeguarding reasons, students will not be allowed to leave the school site on their own if we only receive a note in their planner.

Whenever possible, please make appointments outside of school hours.

Dates for your Diaries

Tuesday 23rd June, 3.00-5.30pm - Skoolkit in school to sell uniform to existing students
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
Wednesday 1st and Thursday 2nd July – Year 6 induction days
Monday 13th July – Work experience starts for Year 10
Wednesday 22nd July – last day of term; school breaks up for summer holidays.

Dates of parents’ evenings:
Thursday 18th June – 4.00-7.30pm Year 7 parents’ evening 2
Tuesday 30th June – New intake parents’ induction evening

Dates for Autumn Term 2015
Tuesday 1st September – Inset day
Wednesday 2nd September – Year 11 and Year 7 return to school
Thursday 3rd September – Years 8, 9 and 10 return to school