Principal’s Update – 31st March 2023

Dear Families,

I hope this update finds you in the best of health. We have reached the end of term two with the fortnight’s Easter break beginning today. You will have noted from previous updates that its been a busy period for the academy with a huge range of additional activities, visits and experiences taking pace each week. This week has been no different as you will see from the, somewhat extensive, update below.

Dear Families,

I hope this update finds you in the best of health. We have reached the end of term two with the fortnight’s Easter break beginning today. You will have noted from previous updates that its been a busy period for the academy with a huge range of additional activities, visits and experiences taking pace each week. This week has been no different as you will see from the, somewhat extensive, update below.

Year 11 Update

Thank you to all families who attended Parents’ Evening for Year 11 students on Wednesday. It’s always a pleasure to welcome you to the academy and discuss learning, progress and, in this case, plans for post 16 and the final push before the Year 11 examinations.

To help with their preparation for these up and coming exams, our staff are running a selection of revision sessions over Easter for our Year 11 students.  Students have been given information about the dates and timings of these sessions in school or at the Year 11 Parents’ Evening on Wednesday night. If you weren’t able to attend Parents’ evening, please check your email or ask your child for information if you are unsure of when these sessions are taking place. The revision sessions form a key part of our additional support for students in examination years and will serve our young people well in the run up to the summer schedule. The exam season starts early this year with some students sitting exams as early as the 16th May, leaving around 20 school days before their first exam. It is important that students take these opportunities to spend time with subject experts focussing on how to maximise the chances of securing the grades they are capable of.

Year 13 Update

A group of our Year 13 students attended an Assessment Centre with Alstom on Tuesday, aimed at preparing them for higher level apprenticeships at Post 18. Students received tips and advice on how to be successful during their interviews and feedback has suggested that they found the sessions really useful.

The Year 13 Mock Examination period has now ended and the final marks are being counted. Results will be emailed out to parents over the Easter break. In the run up to the exams, the Sixth Form Study Centre will be open after school until 5pm, where students can stay, study and can access additional help if needed.


The following intervention sessions are taking place over the Easter holidays for Year 13:

  • Sociology (Monday 3rd April 2023, 9 am – 12 pm)
  • A-Level Business (Tuesday 11th April 2023, 11 am – 1 pm)
  • History (Wednesday 12th April 2023, 10 am – 3 pm)
  • Biology (Thursday 13 April 2023, 11 am – 1 pm)
  • Ethics (Thursday 13th April 2023, 9 am – 12pm)
  • Art and Textiles (Friday 14th April 2023, 11 am – 3 pm)

Year 9 Parents Evening

Year 9 Parents Evening will take place on Wednesday 26th April 2023. The event will start at 4.20 pm and end at 6.50 pm. This is an important evening as not only will you get a face to face update on how your child is progressing from their class teacher(s) but you will also have the chance to discuss subject choices for next year. Families will receive an email on the first day back after Easter, Monday 17th April 2023, to explain how the online booking system will work. Please keep the date free and we look forward to seeing you on Wednesday 26th April 2023.

Year 9 Pathways

In the lead up to the Parents Evening students in Year 9 will be thinking of their subject choices for next year. On Monday 17th April 2023, they will have an assembly that will explain the Pathways process.  Over the following fortnight they will be supported by their Form Tutor who will go through the subjects on offer as well as offer advice to students.  Class teachers will also be outlining what their subjects contain in Year 10 and Year 11. On Tuesday 18th April 2223, students will be given a Pathways booklet that they can bring home to discuss with you. There is a link to these booklets as well as subject specific loom videos on our website. Please take a look at these, especially if your child is interested in Business Studies, Psychology, Media and Health and Social Care, as these are subjects that they have not studied in Year 7 – 9.

On the Parents Evening itself, there will be an opportunity to see the Pathways presentation that has been delivered to students if you need more information. Throughout the Pathways process if you have any queries or questions then please contact Mrs Hiscock, your child’s Progress Leader.

Easter Holiday Activities and Food Programme

Derby’s Holiday Activities & Food (HAF) Programme begins next week, with a wide range of free activities for eligible children and young people in Derby over the Easter holidays. There’s something for everyone with sports, dance, music, arts and science and sessions are located right across the city. Every session will provide activities, fun, friendship and a nutritious meal for the children. Places are available for children between the ages of 5 and 16 who are eligible for benefits related free school meals. The full programme can be found here, and families can book on directly.

Derby QUAD Visit

During Term 1, our Year 10 Art pupils took part in a number of workshops to improve their photography and Photoshop skills. They got to work with Derby QUAD and artist Thomas Wynne, producing some amazing cityscapes to link in with their GCSE project ‘Nature vs Manmade’. This week we were able to see the students’ work in exhibition as part of the FORMAT Festival which Derby QUAD is part of. This is the first time our pupils have been able to showcase work in this way. It is an amazing opportunity for us to be involved with the wider community and have students’ work showcased to the public. The experience has also been a great way to show first-hand what other ‘real life’ photographers are involved with and how to extend career opportunities after they leave Derby Moor. The FORMAT festival officially ends on Sunday 9th April 2023, but our students’ work will continue to be proudly displayed in QUAD until Sunday 2nd July 2023 if anyone would like to visit and see it.

Parents’ Forum

Our first ‘Parent’s Forum’ meeting for some time will take place on Wednesday 19th April 2023 at 7.00pm – 7.45pm in HO7. Entrance to the school will be through the ‘Out of Hours’ entrance at the end of the Sports Hall. The route to the meeting will be signposted from the out of hours entrance.

The Agenda for the meeting is as follows:

  • Refreshments: Tea/Coffee/Water – Opportunity for Parents/Carers to write questions for school to feedback on.
  • Introduction and Welcome – Mr Doyle
  • Feedback from February Parents Voice survey – Mr Scott
  • Class Charts – Mr Malik
  • Reporting Process – Mr Press/Mr Hall
  • Summary of question areas raised from the start of the meeting – potential areas to bring back at the next parents forum – Mr Scott – Wednesday 14th June 2023 6.30 – 7.30pm in HO7.

Ivy House Reading Project

The third cohort of Ivy House readers completed their project on Thursday.  Our students have been visiting Ivy House School once a week over the half term to read with the Ivy House students.  This has been a really successful project and will continue after Easter. There will be a celebration event on Thursday 6th July 2023, where all Derby Moor Students who have been involved in the Reading Project will meet with the Ivy House students for a Reading Picnic. Further details about this event are to follow.

May Fair

The PTFA are planning to hold a May Fair on Friday 26th May 2023 at Derby Moor. The event will be after school with activities both in and outdoors. It is planned that there will be craft stalls, activities to take part in and presentations to enjoy. Further details about this event to follow closer to the time

Reading Rampage

We are now halfway through the Reading Rampage programme.  Students have had the opportunity to borrow and read one of 10 different books. The programme is being run with 25 other schools. The aim of the programme is to find the students favourite book as well as the most borrowed book. At present, it is a close race between ‘Dreadwood’ and ‘You’re not the boss of me!’  You can listen to the first chapter of all the books being read by different members of staff by following the links below:

Mrs Bell Lightning Strike


Mrs Murray You’re not the Boss of me


Mrs Burrows Girl from the Sea


Mr Rawson Cameron Battle
Mr Scott Dreadwood
Mr Hall Blue


Mr Malik Stealth Access
Mrs Hiscock Let’s Chase the Stars together


Miss Sanghera While the storm rages


If your child still has one of the books and is not reading it, or has finished it, please can you remind them to sign the book back in with Mr Scott and give their rating out of 5 (5 being the best). They can then return it to the bookcase on the Learning Hub so someone else can have the opportunity to read and enjoy the story.

Computing Update

This term the Computing Department has been running a number of Employability Skills Projects including Year 7 Scratch Game, Year 7 HTML Website and Year 9 Cyber Security Solutions (Cyber Start). Samples of student work have been sent to employers for feedback including DHL, Toyota and Rolls Royce. They were very impressed with the standard of work received and picked out a few students who did exceptionally well. The Computing team will be giving out rewards and prizes to students on the first week back to celebrate their effort and participation in the projects.


We are anticipating that Eid al Fitr will take place on Friday 21st April. We will be distributing a letter via email to all families regarding school arrangements on that day. Please keep an eye out for this when we return after the Easter break as it will require a response from families who are celebrating on the Friday.

Rolls Royce Mentors

Several students from Years 8 and 9 took the opportunity to share their innovative ideas for making life easier, safer or more sustainable in a virtual meeting with two mentors from Rolls Royce this week. They received feedback on their ideas that will be entered into the Teen Tech Awards. Our mentors were intrigued by each of the projects and were able to link some of the students’ ideas to experimental projects that their company is endeavouring to develop. It’s one thing having a creative idea, but when you discover that experts believe it’s possible, it becomes tremendously exciting. It was a really rewarding experience which boosted our students’ confidence to pursue their ideas further.

Sports Update

Y7 Football: On Monday, the Year 7 team took on Chellaston in the league. The team fought really well in a really enthralling game and pushed hard until the end but narrowly lost 4-3. Goals from IM, MG and OP. POTM – MG.

On Wednesday, the team went away to play against John Port. It was all even with no score at half time but a strong second half from John Port saw the team lose 4-0.


Y10 Football: On Wednesday, the Year 10 football team played in the county cup quarter final against Wilsthorpe. A really strong performance saw the boys win 4-0 and progress to the semi-finals.

Careers Update

This week’s job of the week is a ‘University Lecturer’.

DHL and The Outward Bound Trust: We are delighted to have 24 Year 10 students who have been successfully selected to attend a one week residential at the Outward Bound Centre at Aberdovey, Wales. This week they took part in a preparation day with the DHL staff to plan what to expect on the residential. They participated in a range of team building and problem solving activities with a focus on bringing the students together as well as developing many of the key employability skills such speaking and listening, problem solving, teamwork and leadership. After the holidays the students will be leading some fund raising activities prior to attending the residential in May.

Network Rail: We were pleased to welcome Jemilah Wagamin from Network Rail into school this week to present a range of apprenticeships to our Year 12 & 13 students. The students were made aware about the opportunities available for live apprenticeships and how to apply. Jemilah also offered to return to Derby Moor and support any students who would like further support with the application process and will be running some further sessions with our Year 10 students in the summer term.

Alstom: It was great to welcome back Amanda Stevenson-Bate, our Enterprise Adviser from Alstom, this week. Amanda came to present about a wide range of work experience opportunities for interested Year 12 students ranging from System Engineering and Electronics to Human Resources and Supply Chain. Following this session, Amanda, with the help of a colleague then took a group of Year 13 students through a mock assessment centre. Students were taken through the range of activities that they may have to undergo when applying for jobs. This included: interviews; practical exercises both as an individual or as part of a group and online tests. The students then took part in two group activities, one was to plan and build a bridge whilst the other involved a planning exercise for developing a part of the business. Amanda explained that throughout the whole selection process, the key is to look at how the students demonstrate what they call ‘competencies’. These are really the employability skills that young people need to show they can demonstrate when seeking employment. In school we call these the 4Rs.

Medicine and medical sciences:  We were delighted to welcome Mandy Hampshire and Julie Carson to talk to a group of Year 12 and Year 10 students about becoming a doctor or working in the health science sector. Mandy is currently a GP as well as Director of Undergraduate Medicine Admissions at Nottingham University, whilst Julie is both a local GP and teaches students at the University of Nottingham. Julie was also a student at Derby Moor, leaving in 1993. She was able to share her career journey with our students from school, to the University of Leeds and finally the University of Nottingham. The session provided lots of advice on how to prepare for medical applications and stressed the importance of GCSE results, particularly in Maths and Science. Furthermore, they both told the students how important it is to develop their employability skills, particularly around problem solving and team work as they described the work of a GP as a detective to help discover what a patient may be suffering from. Gaining experience of showing how to communicate with a range of people was also stressed and suggestions that this can be developed by getting involved in a wide range of activities including sport, music, drama or volunteering and helping with activities both with young or old.

Oxford University trip: Following the visit of our Year 12 students earlier in the term, it was the turn of our Year 10 students this week. The students took part in a residential at St. Edmund Hall, Oxford University along with students from some other local schools. Unlock Oxford aims to equip students with knowledge about higher education opportunities; increase students confidence in their ability academically and to meet their potential and support students in making competitive applications to top universities like Oxford in the future..

A Level Psychology: It was wonderful to welcome back Ranjeet Bassi (attended Derby Moor 2005-2013) to deliver some sessions to our Year 13 Psychology students.  Ranjeet is now a qualified Clinical Psychologist, working in London and she shared her journey from Derby Moor with our students. This included Ranjeet completing her first degree in Psychology at Warwick University, followed by a MSC in Clinical Mental Health Sciences at University College London and finally a PhD in Clinical Psychology at Oxford University. Ranjeet enabled the students to make the links between what they are doing on the A Level course and the potential career routes in Psychology.

Final Thoughts

I hope you all manage to enjoy some quality time with family and those closest to you over the Easter break or the bank holiday weekend. I know that it will continue to be an intense time for students (and families) in Years 11 and 13 as revision becomes more regular and the exam season looms. There is plenty support for our young people in the final run in, please do contact the Year Teams if you think your child needs anything additional. From a parents point of view, its about keeping them motivated, rewarding them for sticking to their revision timetable and allowing breaks and downtime to recharge their batteries. All the additional work now will pay dividends in the summer and beyond.

When we return after the break the days will be longer- and the weather will hopefully take a turn for the better. You can already see some elements of spring across our site as trees are beginning to blossom and daffodils have sprung up. Happy Easter to those of you celebrating and Ramadan Mubarak to those who are fasting.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend and a relaxing break,

Scott Doyle