Principal’s Update – 14th October 2022

Dear Families,

I hope this week’s update finds you and those closest to you in good health. There has been a lot happening at the academy this week and we have a fact filled update for you below as we enter the final week of Half Term 1.

Dear Families,

I hope this week’s update finds you and those closest to you in good health. There has been a lot happening at the academy this week and we have a fact filled update for you below as we enter the final week of Half Term 1.

Sixth Form Open Evening

Our Post-16 Open Evening is taking place between 6.00pm and 7.30pm on Wednesday 19th October. Families will have the opportunity to speak to both subject teachers and students to learn about sixth form life, the opportunities we offer as well as the specifics of each subject and how the courses are delivered. We are keen to showcase the wide range of study programmes we offer, tailored to our individual student needs and employment goals whether they be university, a high-end apprenticeship or sustainable employment. Visitors will also have the opportunity to talk to past students to understand how Derby Moor helped them to achieve their goals and develop as individuals. School leaders and the Post-16 Team will also be available to answer any questions you have about Post-16 at Derby Moor Spencer Academy.

BBC Share Your Story

As part of the BBC’s centenary celebrations, the English department were delighted to work in partnership with the BBC to host their ‘Share Your Story’ sessions with Years 7-9 on Thursday. Each year group heard our visitors tell powerful and inspirational stories of how they had managed to overcome challenges in their lives. The students heard from Lizzie Hyland, a Social Media Executive, who spoke about supporting a family member with illness and Dan O’Brien, a BBC Scheduling Coordinator, who spoke about his Asperger’s diagnosis and how this led to his dream job with the BBC. There was a real buzz of excitement around school surrounding this event which was clear to see through the meaningful conversations between students and staff and via our young people expressing their passion and interest towards the sessions after attending them. The visitors from the BBC said that they felt incredibly welcome in our school and commended our pupils for the way that they conducted themselves. This opportunity had an immediate impact upon our pupils, which was especially evident amongst the students who had a chance to talk about their individual stories following on from the session. It was such a highlight to see them feel so empowered to be able to take the spotlight to tell their own stories. We will be continuing to work with the BBC, and will be sending out information in due course to pupils in tutor time.

Drop Down Day

Today saw our first Drop Down Day of the academic year with a whole host of different activities taking place on and off site to enrich our students wider learning and personal development. Half of our Year 7s went to Bolsover Castle to learn about its history, whilst the rest visited two contrasting local churches. Year 8 students intrigued us with their inventions to make life safer, simpler or more stimulating in the future and we clearly have some budding entrepreneurs. Thank you to all families who provided the recycling material to help students to make their prototypes. Students in Years 9&10 learned the importance of respect and consent in relationships, how to manage anger, effective teamwork, managing money and drugs awareness. Year 10 had a fascinating insight into the Police Force and Year 11 had help to develop stress reducing study skills, to clarify potential routes ahead to careers and to write the best possible CV from business and industry experts. Meanwhile our Sixth Form were completing UCAS applications, learning vital skills of First Aid and Team Building and investigating career and training routes. A huge thank you to all the staff, facilitators and students who made the day possible.

Teen Tech

As their Teacher of the Year, Mrs Ezis was privileged to be invited by Teen Tech to be part of the live launch of the Teen Tech Awards to schools and colleges across the UK last night. She helped to explain how schools can run the awards successfully and the impact it can have on young people. We are proud that one of our own is held in such high regard by Teen Tech and hope to continue our strong relationship with the organisation.

QUAD Art Exhibition

Over the past month the Nurture group have been taking part in their first Schools in Residence workshop with artist Bruce Asbestos. Bruce’s recent QUAD (Derby) exhibition Eye of Newt 2.0 features a new video game, giant inflatables, new sculptures, a large painting, and special commissioned seating that doubles up as an artwork. As part of this programme our Nurture group have been working with Bruce to design food monster sculptures. Following on from this week’s session Bruce has gone away to mock-up three sculptures and present these back to the group before finally sculpting the chosen piece to be exhibited at the QUAD (and then eventually back here at Derby Moor). Our students have been fantastic ambassadors as always, showcasing their creativity and fine motor skills in sculpting their drawn ideas in air dry dough. We are looking forward to seeing the final sculpture come to fruition.

Changing Lives – Mental Health Support

We have recently been contacted by the Changing Lives Mental Health Support Team. They are  a team of Mental Health Practitioners which work closely work with schools and young people across the city, offering an early intervention service, evidence-based interventions for children and young people with mild-moderate signs of anxiety/low mood. Whilst we signpost and provide support within school, the team have asked us to share a self-referral link for you people that you can find by clicking here.

Book Fayre

The book fayre has been a fantastic success this week, having sold over £200 worth of reading material in just 2 days. It’s been lovely to see our young people picking up and chatting about books and reading. A big thank you to the 6th form leadership team for their support in running the event. There is still time to get a book if you weren’t able to this week as the book fair will be in school until Wednesday next week. Payment can be taken as cash or via online payment.

Lost Property

As the end of the first half term draws closer, the pile of lost property grows bigger. The vast majority of these items are not labelled and, as such, are difficult to return to their rightful owner. Can families please label their children’s uniform so it is easier to find if lost and direct their children to lost property to reclaim any items they have lost this half term.

Sports Update

Y7 Football Tournament: Our Y7 team battled hard against John Port, Littleover, Murray Park, CODA and Noel Baker last week with a number of new players making their debut. The tournament ended with a total of 6 points gained and it was great to see such a positive attitude from AH, who goes down alongside EF as the players of the tournament. The final tournament takes place on the 19th.

Year 8 Football: In a highly competitive encounter, Derby Moor walked away with a share of the points in a 3-3 draw with Landau Forte. The team showed strong resilience to come back from behind on three different occasions. In the first half it was LD who pulled the team level, after Landau has scored from the penalty spot. In the second half AB and LD both put the ball in the back of the next to bring the scores level. The result means that the team remain unbeaten heading into next week’s away fixture.

Year 9 Football: The Year 9 team faced a difficult task as they travelled the short distance to Bemrose with a team of 10. An exciting opening to the game saw both sides carve out some good chances but they weren’t able to find the finishing touch. Things settled down toward the end of the first half with Derby Moor taking control of the game. Two identical goals from MH and TG saw us 2-0 up at the break. The second half started brightly and a pinpoint cross from AG found YI at the back post who composed himself before firing home. Bemrose tried to force a way back into the game, even having a penalty saved by RKM, but our defence stood firm. Bemrose did eventually score with almost the last kick of the game as it finished 3-1 to Derby Moor.

Girls Football: On Friday evening last week, despite torrential rain and driving wind, the Y7, 8 and 9 girls all showed inspirational levels of resilience to take the to the pitch for training. With over 20 girls in attendance, the legacy of the Lionesses summer exploits is being felt at Derby Moor and they are now eager to get some competitive fixtures under their belts in the coming weeks.

Year 10 Football: A close game between Derby Moor and John Port ended in a 2-2 draw. JB sent Derby Moor into an early lead inside the first minute, but John Port responded quickly. Another goal from JB put Derby Moor 2-1 up before half time. There were plenty of chances in the 2nd half for both teams but John Port found an equaliser to share the spoils.

Year 8 Football:  Another victory for the Y8 students who won a hard fought out match at Da Vinci. Their manager is hoping they can continue this good run of form in to the play-off games! Di Vinci 2 – 3 Derby Moor.

Careers Update

DHL Outward bound opportunity: Year 10 students have been introduced to this year’s DHL outward bound opportunity. Students will be invited to apply for a selection day and a chance to participate in a residential experience with  the DHL UK Foundation’s partnership with The Outward Bound Trust. The day will be run by employers from DHL who will be working with the students. The students will take part in a whole range of activities which will develop their employability skills such as problem solving, teamwork, creativity and communication. Students were invited to apply via SMHW on 13th October. There is a video to introduce the programme and a link to the survey here.

This week’s job of the week is a ‘Town Planner’. You can watch the two minute video here.

During the ‘Drop Down Day’ all of our Year 11 students had a ‘Next Steps’ assembly which introduced them to the pathways open to them at the end of Year 11. There were presentations about apprenticeships; college as well as sixth form and this will be followed up with further work over the coming weeks. Year 11 students also took part in a CV writing workshop. We had volunteers from a number of local businesses in school sharing their experience and guiding our students on how to prepare a CV. On Tuesday our Year 11 students will be having a mock interview with an employer. We would encourage students to complete a draft CV and to print a copy ready to take to their mock interview. There are some helpful resources for writing CVs on the Luminate Careers website.


If you are interested in joining our team, working with young people or planning a change in role, we are currently recruiting for some Support Professional roles at the academy including Multi Agency Team Manager, Senior Learning and Progress Assistant, Specialist Teaching Assistant, Behaviour Mentor, Admin Assistant and Exam Invigilators. You are more than welcome to come and see our school in action as a potential candidate for one of these opportunities.


Wishing you a relaxing weekend,

Scott Doyle