Principal’s Update – 13th January 2023

Dear Families,

I hope this update finds you and those closest to you in the very best of health. Following what has felt like a long break away, it has been great to bring our community back together this week and start the year as we mean to go on. You will be aware that we had a staff training day on Monday with a focus on developing reading in our young people – there will be further updates on this later in the year where you may be able to support your child and others with some of our initiatives.

Dear Families,

I hope this update finds you and those closest to you in the very best of health. Following what has felt like a long break away, it has been great to bring our community back together this week and start the year as we mean to go on. You will be aware that we had a staff training day on Monday with a focus on developing reading in our young people – there will be further updates on this later in the year where you may be able to support your child and others with some of our initiatives.

Derby Moor’s Got Talent

I am delighted to share that we had over 50 students audition for the talent show this year. Once again the standard of talent was incredibly high- but our judges have made the difficult decisions to narrow the field down. A final 15 acts have been selected to showcase their talent in our upcoming show. We have last year’s winning beat boxers returning to open the second half and the Afro-Beats Dance club opening the first half. All the cast are working incredibly hard now sand over the next 4 weeks to prepare for the show.

Tickets are available on parent pay and in the Honour Hub priced at £3 pp, refreshments will be available on the night, but it will be cash only.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park Trip

On Tuesday, Year 10 Art students visited the Yorkshire Sculpture Park to support their current coursework project ‘ Nature Vs Manmade’. Despite the rain, the students viewed modern and contemporary sculptures created by famous artists such as Robert Indiana, Damien Hirst and Henry Moore and gained valuable insights into how sculpture positively impacts the environment. The students braved the conditions, showed a genuine enthusiasm for the artwork and were a real credit to the Academy. If you would like to find out more about YSP or visit yourself, please go to

Principal’s Coffee Morning

The next Principal’s Coffee Morning will take place on Friday 3rd February at 10am. This will be a chance to hear updates about the academy from myself and Mr Scott and ask any questions you have about the school and our plans moving forwards. There is no need to book in, simply arrive at reception ahead of the 10am start time and a colleague will take you to the Library where the meeting will take place.

SEND Family Support Drop-In

A reminder that Mrs Steans has booked Tuesday the 31st  of January from 3.20 till 5pm for Louise Bieluch and Davinia Hammersley from the STePS team to offer their expertise and support. STePS Social Communication and Autism Team are a team of experienced teachers and education practitioners for children and young people with Social Communication needs, Autism and Sensory needs.  Their role is to support children and young people in mainstream schools.  A child or young person does not need to have a diagnosis of ASD to access this support.

This drop in session is open to all parents who feel that they would benefit from some additional guidance in supporting their child, would like to chat to other parents in similar situations or have some questions about how to access specific support.

Sensory needs was one of the most common discussion points in the previous meeting and we have decided to focus on this in our next drop in. In preparation for attendance please use this link to access the Occupational Therapy Teams sensory videos. You can watch all of the videos or just select the videos which you feel are most relevant for you. Hopefully at the next meeting you can feed back about how useful they were. If you need your child to attend with you due to childcare issues, please do so. To confirm your attendance, please email Mr Reddy.

Computing Update

Our Computing team have offered a useful link about harmful online content and a reminder to be aware of the content your child is viewing when browsing on their phone or computer. There is a lot of content on the web that is designed to influence young people negatively. Whilst we do have conversations in school about this with our students, it is equally important to follow this up in the family home. You can find the advice page here.

Wave 2 intervention for Year 11 started on Monday 21st November 2022. Letters have been sent home to parents via email and a hard copy has been given to students in form time this week. Should you have any questions regarding it,  please email Mrs. Hrncic.

Science Trip to Loughborough University

On Thursday the Year 13 Chemists visited Loughborough University to complete their A-Level practical, synthesising Aspirin from Salicylic Acid. Aspirin is a widely used drug that is used as pain relief for toothache, headaches, colds/flu and more recently at low doses it has been used to prevent heart attacks and strokes.  Going to the university laboratory students were able to gain an insight as to what expect at both university or industrial laboratories. In addition to completing the practical, students visited the world class sports facilities on the campus, some of the Halls of Residence and the library as well as the Chemistry and Physics buildings.

Year 11 Update

Wave 3 intervention will begin next week for students in Year 11. Those involved will have been informed this week. The intervention forms a key part of our preparations for the summer examinations and is targeted based upon consultations at the parents evening in December and student performance since the November mock series. There is a further round of mock examinations for Year 11 after the half term break, starting on the 27th February. Interviews for sixth form places will also begin shortly with students being given their slots over the next few weeks.

Year 13 Parents Evening

The Year 13 Parents Evening will take place in school on the 1st February from 16.15-18.45. Appointments will be open for booking via the schoolcloud platform. If you are unsure of how to use this or need assistance, please contact the Sixth Form Team.

UKHSA Guidance Update

The UKHSA have updated their guidance for schools and families to reflect the high levels of flu, covid-19 and scarlet fever that are circulating nationally. You can read their press release here. Effectively, the advice is aligned with our normal practice. If your child has a temperature or is unwell, they should remain at home until they are feeling better. All children should be encouraged to wash their hands regularly and catch coughs and sneezes in a tissue. In school we will remind them of this and have continued with our enhanced cleaning regimen to ensure that frequently touched surfaces are cleansed regularly to minimise transmission of any pathogens that survive on these surfaces.

Careers Update

This week’s job of the week is a ‘Judge’.

Brilliant Club: Students in Year 8, 10 and 12 have had a great session with our former student Jack Hitchcock as part of the Brilliant Club today. Jack is currently in his first year at Cambridge University studying Classics and was able to tell the students about his experience so far this term and answer some great questions ranging from ‘What are the lessons like?’ to ‘are most of the students from private schools?’ Jack was able to reassure our students that the lessons are really varied and interesting and that nearly all the students he has met are from state schools, just like Derby Moor.

Year 10 Trip: Parents of students in Year 10 should have received an email with a copy of the letter about the trip to Derby University next Thursday. On the visit students will have the chance to experience our local university and ask questions about university life, funding and the range of courses on offer.

Year 9 and 10 Unifrog sign up: Unifrog is a platform that helps students compare every university course, every apprenticeship, and Further Education courses. It also includes a wide range of tools and things for students to explore and can help them complete a successful application when the time comes. You can take a look at Unifrog here. We will be using Unifrog on the next ‘Drop Down Day.’ If your child is in Year 9 & 10, please encourage them to register on Unifrog. They will have received an email from Unifrog to their Derby Moor email this week – if they don’t see it, they need to check their junk/spam inbox. Students need to register and set up their account by Wednesday.

Our Year 11 students continue to meet with one of our Careers advisers Kat Garland, Jessica Townsend or Flavia Ojok from Luminate Careers either as part of a group workshop on college, apprenticeships or sixth form or a  1:1 session. Luminate also have an excellent website with a wealth of useful information. Please have a look at the link:


Final Thoughts

The new calendar year is often a time for people to make changes, turn over a new leaf or commit to a resolution. I wonder how many of our students have set themselves a personal goal for the year. Certainly the positivity and focus we have seen across the academy this week would suggest that some perhaps have. I showed a visitor around school today who, like all of our visitors, noticed the calm, purposeful atmosphere throughout the academy. The focus of the visit was on sixth form but she commented on how smart all of our students are and how, through conversations, it is clear that they enjoy being part of the school community. It is nice to have our community back in the building, collectively working towards our value of aspiration for each student. We won’t be making a new resolution, we will continue with our same values of achievement, aspiration, high expectations and community and do everything we can to give our young people the best chances in life. Together We Succeed.


Wishing you a wonderful weekend,

Scott Doyle