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Southmoor Snippets ISSUE 18 AUTUMN TERM 2017

Upcoming Events Upcoming Events Tuesday 9th January 2018 School Re-opens for Spring Term

Monday 15th January 2018 Year 8 Progress/Pathways Evening

Monday 22nd January 2018 Year 10 Progress Evening

Wednesday 24th January 2018 Sixth Form Information Open Evening

Friday 2nd February 2018 Deadline for 2018 Sixth Form Applications

It’s been a very productive term at Southmoor! There have been significant strides forward in the provision of extra-curricular and competitive sport with opportunities now in place for all year groups and across a number of sports. Our ‘Raising Aspirations’ initiative saw a formalising of relations with Oxford University, resulting in our launch as the North East’s ‘Hub’. This attracted prominence in both local and national news bulletins. I hope this edition finds you enjoying some family time over the festive season. In those ‘spare’ moments please check your email subscription to the weekly blog via the school’s website. Whilst detailing some highlights, a great number of stories don’t make it into Snippets. With your support our aim in 2018 is for all parents to access the blog weekly. With best wishes for Christmas and the New Year. Mr S Garrett, Principal



Lauren Green Head Student

Poppy Butler Head Student

Eve Larssen Amber Reed Deputy Head Student Deputy Head Student

DR. P Ingram

Chloe Pratt Student Councillor

Fletcher Forster Student Councillor

Oliver Graham Student Councillor

Lexi Taylor Student Councillor

Ali Iqbal Student Councillor

Alexander Hunter Student Councillor

Joe Middleton Student Councillor

Hermione Brown Student Councillor

Yasmin Turner Student Councillor

Ben Anderson Student Councillor

Presenting Our 2018 Student Council We are proud to announce the students who have successfully secured places to represent our 2018 Student Council after being elected by their peers.

The members are; Ben Anderson & Yasmin Tanner (Year 7), Joe Middleton & Hermione Brown (Year 8), Ali Iqbal & Alex Hunter (Year 9), Oliver Graham & Lexi Taylor (Year 10) and Deputy Head Students Eve Larssen & Amber Read (Year 11). Representing from The Sixth Form are; Chloe Pratt & Fletcher Forster (Year 12) and Head Students, Poppy Butler and Lauren Green (Year 13).

Since they took up their roles in October the council have been very busy planning events, hosting VIP guests, working on school wide initiatives and representing Southmoor in the ‘State of the City’ debate at the City Council Chambers. We look forward to reporting more about their ideas and efforts to help improve Southmoor for their peers.

. In this issue..


• School Council • Southmoor in the Media

New Recruits for our Young Health Champions YO





Just before the end of term, we were pleased to present the following Year 9 students with their certificates for completing the ‘Sunderland Young Health Champion Programme’: Amelia Woodford, Lily Gordon, Sarah Jasas, Mia Boddy, Lauren Hunter, Rebecca Steel, Katelyn Quinnin, Tallianna Neale, Ayshia Clough, Robyn Price, Emily Shord, Ione Conn, Eleanor Wharton, Shawana Shahab and Olivia Hall. The girls were also awarded the ‘Level 1 Award in Health Awareness’ which enables them to work alongside our current Year 10 & 11 Young Health Champions and offer support in health-related issues.

Year 8 pupils participating in the Sir Tom Cowie Trust Achievement and Engagement Challenge tested out their literacy skills and sporting prowess. They worked as a team to increase their all-important points tariff. Congratulations to Team Triton who came top in the sporting challenge and Teams Pegasus & Phoenix who tied in the literacy challenge. The 12 pupils who accrue the most points will take part in a funded trip to the Outward Bound Centre in Ullswater.

Sun FM Stars Hit the Local Air Waves This term, Southmoor pupils took part in a competition as part of the ‘Next Generation C-Card Campaign’ organised by Sunderland Council/ Sun FM. Schools from across the city were involved to help young people understand that most people their age are not sexually active. Competitors produced a 40 second advert to encourage young people to delay sex until they are emotionally ready.

Congratulations to Emily Shord, Millie Nichol and Amelia Woodford who were stars for the day when they were given the opportunity to record their shortlisted entry in the Sun FM studio. They presented their advert to the Sunderland Council and Sun FM judging panel along with other short listed entries and we are thrilled to announce that they won! They were invited to the Sun FM studio to professionally record their winning entry for airing on the radio station at the start of December.

• Year 6 Visit Southmoor • Career Initiative


Students Take Up The Challenge

• Amazing Trips Out

• Oxford at Southmoor • Remembrance Day 2017 • What’s Happening at the Sixth Form • Sports Digest

Join us online! @SouthmoorAcademy @SouthmoorAc



Oxford at Southmoor Southmoor Academy was delighted to welcome some very important visitors from Oxford University in November. Dame Lynne Brindley, the Master of Pembroke College and Samina Khan, Head of Undergraduate Admissions came to speak to Year 10 and 11 students as part of the launch of the new OxNet hub for Sunderland which is based at Southmoor and is the first of its kind in the North East. The hub is designed to raise aspirations across the region both by improving the numbers of students applying to Oxford directly, but also by encouraging students to aspire to courses at Durham, Cambridge and other top universities in the UK and beyond. Dame Lynne spoke to the students about the experience of studying at Pembroke College and took questions on a range of topics. She was particularly fascinated by the research topics students had themselves identified as part of Southmoor’s innovative new Honours Programme.

OxNet is Go! November saw the launch of the ‘OxNet’ hub for the North East which was held at the National Glass Centre. Students from across the region attended alongside the Pro Vice Chancellor of Durham, Professor Alan Houston, Lesley Griffin of Sunderland University and academics from all the major regional universities. Dr. Peter Claus, the creator of the OxNet program, was in attendance and accompanied Dame Lynne to Southmoor the following day. Students heard from a range of speakers about the exciting prospects of the programme as well as exploring the ‘Ordered Universe’ exhibition which is a collaborative project that some of our current Sixth Form students took part in over the summer.

In Other News... Sixth Form students found themselves in front of the camera recently as reporters from the BBC visited to get the scoop on our recent appointment as the North East’s first OxNet hub. Year 12 and 13 students spoke to the news team of their aspirations for reaching Oxford as well as the perceived barriers that students from our region have in reaching the world’s top university.


We take the time to have a chat with Miss Maven, who teaches Science as well as A Level Biology. What is the best thing about Southmoor?

I love working in the Sixth Form, you get to see how fantastic our young people really are. I have no doubt that our students will go on to do some remarkable things, and it is a privilege to be able to support them on their journey. Results day is pretty special too, I drove home with a very large bit of dust in my eye this year!

What’s the one thing you can’t be without? My loved ones!

Teacher Talk

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What’s your favourite Artist/Band?

Anything goes! If I can try to sing along, even better.

Who was your favourite teacher?

My English teacher was amazing. We never felt like we were actually doing any work, her lessons were just a series of long discussions. We must have learnt a lot; we all got fantastic grades.

What are your spare time interests?

Tell us something interesting about yourself...

I used to love animals until I had an unfortunate encounter with two wild rhinos. Now I try to keep my distance!

Anything that involves being outside – going to the beach or taking long walks in the countryside. I also love to travel and try to experience as many different cultures as I can.

Open Evening 2017 The atmosphere in the Sixth Form was buzzing on Wednesday 29th November as we held the first Open Evening of the academic year. There was a fantastic turnout with students from across the city as well as Southmoor joining us to see what we are about. Year 12 and 13 student helpers supported staff in showing the very best the Sixth Form at Southmoor has to offer and the lengths we go to in supporting students to aspire to do their very best throughout their lives..

Biology Boffins Our Year 13 Biologists travelled to Newcastle University to take part in a workshop at the School of Biomedical Sciences. They used university-level laboratory techniques to identify a possible chemical terror attack using biomarkers. A very insightful experience, with several students even committing to careers in the field!

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In celebration of European Day of Languages on 25th September, Southmoor held its first ever European Week of Languages! Assemblies were hosted by MFL staff each morning about the importance of learning languages. A competition ran throughout the week where members of staff across the whole school have been speaking different languages in lessons and students noted down who spoke which language. Students in Year 11 went to Hill View Infants to teach German to Year 1 and we had 18 visiting MFL PGCE teachers in school to deliver taster lessons to Years 7 & 8. Our students were able to learn words in Arabic, Swedish, Spanish, Catalan, Dutch and even Japanese.

Peer2Peer Project In addition to our anti-bullying initiatives which were rolled out at the start of November, we have also launched our ‘Peer 2 Peer’ mentoring project. Over 50 of our students have undertaken a bespoke training programme to give the special skills that now qualify them to support fellow pupils in any challenges they may face during their school life. It is hoped that these ‘Peer2Peer’ mentors will make things easier for students who are struggling but find it hard to share their problems with an adult.

A helping hand from the Sixth Form This term we re-launched Sixth Form Lesson Support to encourage links between lower school and sixth form. As part of the initiative Year 12 students will provide support to Year 7 pupils in lessons. As mentors, the students will help pupils with everything from developing literacy skills to leading discussions and engaging in small group tasks.

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Honours Programme on the Go Year 11 students who are part of our Honours Programme visited Durham University to brush up on research skills in preparation for composing and presenting their own independent research questions as part of the initiative. Students had a tour of the University Library, which is one of the best in the country, and have been invited to return at any time to help with the project.

Sister Act

Siblings Lucy and Sophie Bulmer have excelled themselves recently. Sophie (Year 7) attended the London College of Music Examinations Concert and Awards Ceremony in Durham where she won the award for gaining the highest mark for her musical theatre exam in the North East for the second year in a row! She has also just finished her performance season with the Eliot Smith Dance Company where she performed in three sold out shows. In addition, both Sophie and her sister Lucy (Year 10) made it to the final of local talent competition, Genfactor. Sophie performed a musical theatre piece whereas Lucy sang a solo. We are delighted to report that Sophie finished as over all runner up in the final in December.

Focusing on Newcastle

AS and A level photography students have undertaken a practical photography visit exploring the theme ‘Urban Environment’. The intention of the visit was to engage the students immediately through a practical experience, exploring their own ideas and interpretation of the starting point.


To The Barricades! With casting for our 2018 school production of the world famous musical adaptation of Victor Hugo’s ‘Les Misérables’ now complete, rehearsals are well underway in the Performing Arts Department. The cast and crew are meeting twice a week after school to hone their performances and prepare for what already looks to be our best production yet! This also includes working on some of the many props to be used in the production as well as the staging and costumes. Watch this space for more information very soon!

Southmoor Goes Green As part of our eco drive we have recently introduced biodegradable packaging for most of the food and drink cartons used in the school. To help students understand the effect plastics can have on our environment, we have been raising awareness of recycling and its impact on the environment over this term as part of a project driven by our new Student Council. We now have green recycling bins placed around the entire school to make it easier for students to play a helping hand in saving the environment.

Moving On Up This term we welcomed Year 6 pupils from Barnes Junior School, Hill View Juniors, Grangetown Primary & Valley Road Juniors. Our visitors went on to experience a range of lessons in Languages, Art and Science followed by a session considering their future career paths as part of our raising aspirations initiative. After enjoying lunch and a treat from the ‘Southmoor Ices’ van, pupils returned to their schools with goody bags. One lucky winner also took away our Southmoor mascot! We look forward to seeing many of the pupils again next year as Year 7 students.

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Red Coats Return Our popular Red Coats initiative has been re-launched where a group of Year 10 pupils volunteer to support their peers by supervising lunch time enrichment activities including table tennis, football, dodgeball, Youth Hub and social space support.

Lest We Forget Thanks to all our visitors who made such a valuable contribution to Remembrance assemblies in November, including Julie Elliott MP, the Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Doris MacKnight and her Consort, Mr Keith MacKnight and Reverend Andrew Dowsett of Sunderland Minster. The poignant ceremonies included poem readings, musical performances, the playing of the last post and the laying of poppy wreaths hand-crafted by our students in Personal Development time.

Strength in Diversity This term, we were visited by local community leader Mr. Zaf Iqbal who spoke with Year 9 students about the importance of not discriminating against people of other faiths, ethnicities and beliefs. Mr. Iqbal highlighted the difficulties faced by local Muslims in recent years as an example of how hate crimes can damage our community as a whole. The visit underlined the importance of tolerance and understanding as a key British value.

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Riot Act on Road Safety Just after half term, our Year 8 students were presented with an impactful performance delivered by ‘The Riot Act’ on the topic of being safe and aware around road traffic. With six years of experience in the education sector, The Riot Act engage with young people and deliver powerful messages. Thank you to the team for coming to present students with such an important message.

On a Careers Quest This term we have been introducing Year 11 students to local careers. Students have visited such businesses as; Nissan, The Hilton Garden, Marriott Hotel, Roker Hotel & SETA workshops to gain an insight into the different career paths available. Highlights of the visits included pizza making, testing out mocktails, seeing a car assembly line and testing our specialist equipment.

Careers Fair 2018 To go alongside our push for better careers information for our students, we held a Careers Fair to continue to raise aspirations and educate Year 11 about future careers and employment opportunities. Representatives from a range of industries, providers and services joined us to advise pupils including Liebherr, Jacksons Law, Springboard, Keepmoat, Geek Talent and Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue. Year 11 found the event very useful, with many finding out lots of valuable information about their future careers path.


Southmoor Searches for a Star In October the stage was set for our talented students as 18 acts competed in our annual ‘Search For A Star’ event. Judges - Mr. Anderson, Miss Wilkinson, Miss Morrison and Mr. Marr - were blown away by the variety of flair shown by the performers. Acts included rappers, singers, Irish dancing, cheerleading and even a ventriloquist! Third place went to Lauren Kemp, second place was Lauren Green and our overall winner in first place was Danielle Winch. These top three acts will represent Southmoor in the city wide ‘Search For A Star’ in early 2018. Congratulations to everyone who took part!

Book Worms As part of our drive to improve literacy across the curriculum, Year 7 students have recently received a free book to take home and enjoy. Reading opens the door to early academic success, imparts a love of learning and leads to higher grades in every subject. Numerous studies have shown that strong oral language skills are the basis for literacy development. When children read they have greater general knowledge, expand their vocabulary and become more fluent readers. It is for these reasons that we continue to encourage our pupils to learn to love reading.

A Taste of Sixth Form Life This term we gave Year 11 students the chance to attend short taster lessons after school in the A-level subjects they could study at Sixth Form. The snappy lessons were designed to give a flavour of subjects such as Sociology, English Literature & Language, Biology, Media, History, Health & Social Studies and Psychology to students eager to learn more about Key Stage 5 and beyond.

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Sport Digest MGFA Squad Receive Specialist Training Our newest Year 7 Martin Gray Football Academy recruits got the chance to train with the man himself as they engaged in a special training session with the coaches before receiving a tactical classroom lesson with Martin. There is a lot to look forward to for the MGFA squads, including sessions with the specialist coaches for other year groups plus fixtures and trips.

Giving Rugby a Try

Our brand-new Rugby Club has taken off this term. The club is an opportunity for students to test their rugby skills, learn the rules and receive personal training from local coaches. Training takes place every Tuesday after school for girls and Thursday after school for boys with all year groups being welcome.

Inter-House Heroes Our Year 7, 8 and 9 year groups have been competing in inter-house dodgeball and football competitions, with each house group battling to take home the glory. More events like these are planned throughout the year with a special festive inter-house handball competition taking place in December.

Young GNR Star Well done to Year 7 pupil Ava Weatherspoon for her recent fundraising efforts. Ava took part in the Junior Great North Run raising over £100 for charity. Hopefully more pupils will follow Ava’s example and strap on their running shoes for next year’s event!

Thank for reading the latest edition of Southmoor Snippets. Stay even more up-to-date with everything happening at Southmoor Academy by signing up to our weekly blog. Go to for more information. Southmoor Academy: Telephone: 0191 594 9991 Email:

Southmoor Snippets Autumn Term 2017  
Southmoor Snippets Autumn Term 2017  

The latest addition of Southmoor Academy's Termly school newsletter with all the latest on what's happening in and around school.