Principal’s Update – 17th February 2023

Dear Families,

I hope this update finds you and those closest to you in good health. We have had a busy end to the half term and l think our whole community are collectively looking forward to a brief interlude to recharge our batteries, refresh our thinking and reconnect with friends and family. I hope you manage to find some quality time to spend with your nearest and dearest during the break. There are a number of updates below to round off this half term.

Dear Families,

I hope this update finds you and those closest to you in good health. We have had a busy end to the half term and l think our whole community are collectively looking forward to a brief interlude to recharge our batteries, refresh our thinking and reconnect with friends and family. I hope you manage to find some quality time to spend with your nearest and dearest during the break. There are a number of updates below to round off this half term.

Industrial Action

We are anticipating further industrial action on Wednesday 1st March which is the 1st week back after the break. As with the last strike, there remains uncertainty around which staff we will have available on the day, meaning that we will not be able to fully open to all years. A letter will be distributed after the break to confirm exact arrangements but, at this stage, school will operate in the same way as it did during the last strike day. Year 11, 12 and 13 should attend school as normal and will take part in normal lessons where their teachers are available. They will independently study for the remaining sessions. Students in Year 7-10 will not be able to attend school on those days unless they have been identified as vulnerable or have signed up to our critical worker provision.

Year 11 Mock Examinations and Half Term Sessions

Year 11 will begin their final set of Mock Examinations immediately after half term as part of their preparations for this summer’s exam period. Students have been given timetables and have been attending a number of intervention sessions in the run up to the half term. There may be some adjustment to the timetable on Wednesday 1st March as exams may not be able to take place on that day – these assessments will be rescheduled accordingly.

The scores students achieve in the mocks are a good indicator of how they will do this summer but also help us to diagnose the areas they need to work in during the remaining weeks they have with us in Year 11. The days are becoming fewer and we know that for most that brings some apprehension but they can be assured that our students get the grades they deserve. They have exceptional support and will reap the rewards this summer if they have subscribed to the additional provision we host. Over the half term break there are additional sessions taking place for students as detailed below:

Monday 20th February: Y11 History 11am -1pm PA3. Y11 Spanish 11am-12pm MFL7 with FCI.

Tuesday 21st February : Y13 Sociology 9am-12pm with PEA. Y11 Spanish 11-12pm MFL 7 with FCI. Y11 Geography 11-1pm Pa11 with IHA.

Thursday 23rd February: Y11 Biology triple 9am-10am with UBA. Y11 Chemistry triple 10am-11am with UBA. Y11 Trilogy Foundation 11am -12pm with UBA.

Teen Tech Global Challenge

A group of Year 9 and Year 12 students will be visiting Microsoft Headquarters in Reading next half term to explore the possibilities of technological innovations to help with Patient Safety. The students all earned their places by submitting innovative ideas that could potentially improve the Health Service in response to the Teen Tech Global Challenge. They will be meeting mentors who can help them to develop their ideas and look at the viability of their suggestions as realistic prospects.

Duke of Edinburgh

Silver participants have now been issued their kit and should contact one of the DofE staff if there are any issues with that. The Bronze group will be issued with their expedition kit on Thursday 2nd March. All consent forms should now be with Miss Lancaster – please do this urgently if you haven’t already or email a scan of the form to Mrs Burrows.

Computing Update

To continue our support for students during the holidays our computing team have supplied a number of links to refer to about online safety.  You will find ideas for discussions, tutorials on setting up parental controls and where to report any concerns online. These links are also available at the end of your child’s computing SMHW posts. The links are for safer internet, NSPCC, Internet Matters and SWGFL.

Parking and Road Use

The parking on Moorway Lane is a constant challenge for all of our road users, both those picking students up, those who live locally and our children. Please can I encourage everyone to us the turning circle and avoid parking on Moorway Lane. Additionally, the entrance road to Ivy House is not a car park and should not be used at all by Derby Moor families.

Free Community Meals

Derby County Community Trust are providing a free meal for families who are struggling at present. This will take place on Thursday 23rd March, 4pm till 5:30pm at the Community corner of Harrison’s Hub, Pride park stadium. Spaces are limited and booking is essential using this link.


We have a number of roles advertised at present including Teacher of EnglishTeacher of MathsSpecialist Teaching Assistant and Head of Sixth Form. You can find out more on the links provided and see the vacancies across our wider trust here.

Sports Update

Girls Football: On Thursday evening the girls football team travelled to MK Dons stadium to support the England women’s football team taking on South Korea. Following the Euros success we’ve seen a huge increase in girls football participation at Derby Moor. There were just 249 fans at the 2022 opening game between Germany and Spain, while after a tournament high 14,284 turned out to watch England draw 0-0 with Spain. Due to the increase in numbers across the country the FA have introduced a English Schools Cup for all girls football, with our Y7/8 and Y9 team taking part after the half term break.

Year 8 Football: This week the Y8 team returned to action in their final league game of the season against Saint Benedict’s. After a back and forth first half, where the keepers of both teams were forced to make a multitude of saves it was Derby Moor who eventually took the lead. FC was able to run onto a through ball, beating his marker in the process to then calmly slot the ball around the keeper to put Derby Moor ahead. The lead didn’t last long and Saint Benedicts were able to pull the game back to 1-1 midway through the first half. The Derby Moor players didn’t give up though and started to pile on the pressure as they went in search of a win, with AB hitting the crossbar and JS making the keeper work hard. It wasn’t until late in the second half with only minutes to spare that Derby Moor were finally able to pull ahead again, with LD twisting and turning inside the box before blasting the ball into the back of the net. The win leaves Derby Moor on a good run of form as they head into the league playoffs.” Football will also be returning for the boys with the play off and cup games still to go. All of our teams have made the play off matches and the Y10 team have also made the quarter finals of the county cup.

Girls active ambassadors: Over the past few months we have had a number of students in year 10 become ‘girls’ active ambassadors.’ Their aim is to encourage girls participation in physical activity and to develop their leadership skills alongside doing so. They have been achieving this by leading lunchtime clubs to year 8 students . With the support of Girls active and Youth Sport Trust, they have now started to extend their leadership opportunities beyond Derby Moor Academy. Today, students met with Youth Sport Trust members to create a girl’s active leadership event on 28th April. Our year 10 students will be leading boxercise sessions to other students within the community and they will also be provided with a coach to help them plan and lead their session. The long term aim is that we will then have more opportunities for girls at Derby Moor Academy to take part in extracurricular activities at lunch time and afterschool and our year 10 ambassadors will continue to develop leaderships skills; further supporting their potential aspirations and life skills.

Careers Update

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

JCB Early Careers Charity Project: Last week we were lucky to have a visit from one of our alumni, Neil Fowkes, now HR Manager for Early Careers at JCB. Neil brought along a sapling of a ‘British Oak’ and planted it with some of our students from the Innovation Group as part of JCB’s National Apprenticeship Week project. Neil was delighted to include his old school in such a wonderful project and said that ‘The students were great and seemed to love being part of the planting’.

BBC Bitesize Careers: It’s always good advice to explore opportunities and to get help with future plans. Please encourage your child to have a look at the BBC bitesize careers page as it is packed full of interesting and useful information.

Final Thoughts

Half Term 3 has now drawn to a close and we are over halfway through the academic year. For those students in examination years the remaining time feels less and less with a small number of school days left until the exam periods begin. For the rest of our cohort there is still a lot to look forward to in the remainder of the year as we continue to extend our provision and provide further opportunities for all of our students to meet our value of aspiration and become the best in their chosen fields.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend and a relaxing half term break,

Scott Doyle