Nothampton High School
High News

Friday 15 December 2023

Unsung Moments 

The busy buzz of Northampton High has well and truly been prominently showcased in the past week. In addition to the numerous highlights shared on our social media platforms and school website – ranging from the highly successful Christmas Fayre, where we raised an incredible £2447.16 for Northampton Hope Centre, to today’s dazzling and enthusiastic House Plays performances which were filled with enchanting music, drama and infectious joy – our school has been a hive of activity and there have been so many special, unsung moments. So I thought I would celebrate some of the lesser-known highlights of my term, which often go unnoticed but say so much about our community. I do enjoy a good list, so here are my unsung moments of the autumn term 2023:

1. The applications put together for university by the Class of 2024 were as strong as ever. What always impresses me when I review their applications and complete the final send-offs is the thought and meticulous efforts they have put into their personal statements and the care our dedicated staff have put into references. I often come away feeling inspired by the curiosity of your daughters and armed with further recommendations for my bookshelves.

2. The apologetic nature of our pupils when they know they have done something wrong. When I shared my disappointment with the pupils about their behaviour during Late Prep in a whole school assembly, and reminded them that the provision is not for leisure purposes and it should be a supervised quiet working environment in the Library, they listened attentively and clearly took on board my message. As such, I am heartened to see that for the past couple of weeks, the majority of pupils have adhered to the high standards we set in Late Prep; arriving in an orderly manner into the Library, storing their bags in the designated shelving units, and understanding that Late Prep is for academic work and/or reading.

3. The care of our pastoral team in the widest possible sense. I am always impressed at the care my colleagues, especially our Heads of Year (Mrs Fordham, Miss Fraser, Mrs Down) and our Wellbeing and Nursing Team (Mrs Giordano, Nurse Dunkley and Mrs Brown) consistently show individual students, from counselling Year 7 about their cocurricular commitments and how to make new friends, to advising Year 11 and 13 students on how to juggle the demands of their GCSE and A Level studies and leadership responsibilities.

4. Little moments of unexpected joy – the musical medley that we are frequently treated to in the Senior School foyer by some of our singers; my drop-ins to lessons during my lesson walks accompanied by Mr Rickman; the strong work ethic that our Year 11 students have exhibited this term which were verified in so many of their subject reports; the creativity of the Sixth Form World Challenge team in organising a Christmas movie night featuring The Grinch; my admiration for the thoughtful and caring wishes that our pupils have hoped for and shared on this year’s Christmas tree, from ending poverty to stopping all wars, and everyone is happy to be achieving an A* in Biology… these wishes truly reflect the diverse and caring spirit of our pupils.

These moments are all precious and nothing pleases me more than when I see pupils and staff enjoying their work on a daily basis. None of these would have been possible without the irrepressible enthusiasm of our pupils and the direction and hard work of our staff.

I wish you all much planned and unplanned joy this Christmas and all good wishes for 2024.

Dr Lee

The Week Ahead

Monday 8 January
Spring Term begins

Tuesday 9 January


Wednesday 10 January
GCSE Information Evening

Thursday 11 January
Reach Lecture Y9-13

Friday 12 January

Please click here to view the spring term’s Clubs & Activities list and timetable

Celebration Assembly & Christmas Concert

We had a wonderful time celebrating the achievements of our Senior students on Thursday afternoon. Welcoming pupils from Year 7 upwards into the Theatre, students gathered for their special Celebration Assembly.

Each faculty was pleased to congratulate pupils on a variety of achievements and it was wonderful to recognise individuals for their hard work! Well done to everyone for a fantastic autumn term and a special congratulations to all who received an award.

A big thank you to Lilia, the Year 7 Choir, our Senior Choir and our wonderful Orchestra for their brilliant contributions to the assembly. We thoroughly enjoyed the addition of carols at this festive celebration and were delighted to hear from our talented musicians!

The musical performances didn’t stop there, as we were thrilled to host our annual Christmas Concert in the evening. Welcoming friends and families to the event, guests came together for an evening filled with talent and joy. Our fabulous performers, including staff and students, treated the audience to a series of solo and group pieces, as well as a handful of biblical readings.

The concert was a perfect way to conclude the term and celebrate the talent within our school community. A huge thank you to all who attended this annual event and a big well done to our fabulous musicians!

Students perform exceptional House Plays!

In true Northampton High fashion, we were delighted to hold our annual House Plays on the last day of the autumn term. Following weeks of rehearsals, students from Artemis, Demeter, Hestia and Selene came together in a friendly yet fiercely competitive affair to see who would be this year’s recipients of the prestigious trophy!

The level of production and performance shown by our students never fails to impress, and this year we were treated to four spectacular adaptations of fairy tales. On offer this year was Beauty and the Beast from Artemis, Rapunzel from Demeter, The Princess and the Frog from Hestia and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs from Selene.

Pupils set new heights with their exceptional performances and after all four Houses had performed it was time for our judges to vote. Despite the fantastic displays there could only be one winner, and after much deliberation Selene were crowned this year’s worthy winners.

A huge congratulations to all Houses for a wonderful morning of entertainment and a brilliant end to the autumn term!

European Christmas Market

This Thursday, the Languages Faculty brought a Christmas Market to Northampton High School! At break, students were warmly invited to sample some European Christmas food. The catch – students had to ask for the food samples that they wanted to try in the target language.

Our Language teachers and Language Leaders were of course on hand to help if students needed a reminder of how to order food. It was a lovely atmosphere and there was a real sense of Christmas spirit.

Frau Doerpinghaus
Subject Leader German

Holly selected to represent England at Dance World Cup

We are incredibly proud to share that Holly in Year 8 has successfully auditioned and been selected to represent Team England at the Dance World Cup in Prague for 2024.

This is the third year running that Holly has been selected and she will prepare to compete at the end of the Summer Term. She will be performing with her ballet trio and in a musical theatre group, and we can’t wait to see how she gets on!

There were over 5000 entries this year from England, Scotland and Wales, so to be placed in the top 5 and go forward to represent England is a brilliant achievement. A huge well done to Holly on her selection!

Student Blog - Drama: Beyond Curtains

Drama: Beyond Curtains

“All the world’s a stage on which we present ourselves constantly, in an ever shifting range of roles and personas. Drama is the rehearsal room for the presentation of ourselves” -Shakespeare’s Canon programme.

Creative minds, the ability to adapt oneself to a variety of situations and the skill of public speaking are what drives society forwards. A subject which unites these skills is Drama. Despite Drama being offered in many schools for a number of years, it still does not have the same status as other subjects. This article will challenge the stereotype that Drama is simply performing a play. In fact, through this article, the reader will see that it offers more skills than conventional subjects.

To begin, Drama allows people to develop their creativity which is vital for the development of a student’s learning. Creativity allows students to express themselves and enables them to invent ideas. The opportunity for students to explore their learning by ‘constructing’ ideas in the world around them, lays the foundations for good mental wellbeing and an ability to think critically. The New Zealand Curriculum describes Drama as: “A creative environment that asks students to use their imaginations to invent worlds and portray characters either through improvisation or through a thought-out, rehearsed production.” (National Monitoring Study of Student Achievement) This, over time, would prove advantageous to the overall education of a student as, through the medium of Drama, they are pushed to use their intellect and explore ingenuity. 

Secondly, Drama allows us to adapt ourselves to any situation. This was researched by Kevin Brown, Associate Professor of Theatre, University of Missouri. Brown states that: “Theatre is a cultural space where society examines itself in a mirror…It helps us understand how our minds and the minds of others work.” (Kevin Brown The Top Ten Reasons Why Theatre is Still Important in the Twenty-First Century). This evidences the  idea of empathy – the ability to place yourself in another person’s shoes. In a society where mental health is an increasing topic of conversation, Drama allows students to play a part in raising awareness of it, as it explores situations from different perspectives. A Drama technique known as ‘method acting’ allows the actor to replicate the feelings and emotions of another character to better understand them. 

Linking to the idea of adapting oneself is the study of ‘kinesics’. The term ‘kinesics’ was coined by Dr. Albert Mehrabian. Mehrabian was interested in studying the ways in which we use our bodies to communicate, both intentionally and unintentionally. In his research, he found that non-verbal movements, such as facial expressions, gestures, posture, and eye contact, played a significant role in how we interact with one another. This research shows how important our actions are when presenting ourselves. Therefore, Drama is already teaching the fundamentals of how to ‘survive’ in all aspects of society, for example in a professional setting, such as a job interview.

Finally, Drama explores the art of effective communication. In the study, “Arts Education in Secondary Schools: Effects and Effectiveness,” it was said by both students and teachers that: “The skill of knowing when to speak, and in what manner, was useful in many different situations, such as public speaking, group discussions, and job interviews.” Communication skills allow for a growth in confidence which benefits the student massively in all areas of their life. This idea challenges the fact that people who succeed in Drama are always confident; rather, it is quite the opposite as acting is the ability to be someone you are not, which allows for the best success. In a school setting, teaching these expressive skills allows for a collaborative atmosphere as students grow the confidence to express their own opinions and build on the ideas of others.

In conclusion, Drama, although not a conventional subject, provides the skills in life to present yourself in a professional manner and adds the ability to critically think in group settings. Personally, Drama has enabled me to thrive in confidence and allows me to develop a better understanding of the community around me. This has helped me to empathise and communicate with people from a range of backgrounds and experiences. Not only is Drama a means of entertainment for society but it also provides the fundamentals of a working society. Let’s raise the profile of drama!

Caitlin A
Year 12 Drama Ambassador

Creative Arts Spotlight

During the last week of term in Textiles lessons we have been creating needle felted robins and lino printed hanging decorations. Well done Gabi and Francesca in Year 7 for your beautiful decorations.

Miss Lycett
Subject Leader Textiles

High Sports – Autumn edition out now!

We are delighted to share with parents the latest edition of High Sports.

High Sports takes a retrospective look back at the world of sport here at Northampton High, and in this edition we take a look at what has taken place in the first months of the 2023/24 academic year.

Please click here to view this latest edition for the autumn term.

Mr Nash
Marketing & Communications Manager

Reach Lectures - Spring Term 2024


We are delighted to announce our Reach lecture programme for spring term 2024. We look forward to welcoming speakers on an enormous range of subjects, from war in space to social media, via a huge array of topics in between.

The weekly Reach talks are an opportunity for students in Years 9-13 to explore areas far beyond the school curriculum, broadening their horizons and developing their skills of curiosity and critical thinking. We are excited to offer this programme to our students and are very grateful to all our speakers for giving up their time to share their expertise with us.

Any parents who might be interested in contributing to the Reach lectures in 2025 are encouraged to email

Miss Kilby
Reach Coordinator

Neurodiversity talk - ADHD

On Thursday 18 January, Dr James Brown will be hosting a talk on ADHD titled ‘The Science of ADHD: Navigating Neurodiversity in a Neurotypical World’. As the Communications Director for Psychiatry-UK, the country’s leading adult ADHD service, he welcomes those interested to join him to explore the neuroscience, the symptoms, the positives and the struggles of ADHD at this session.

Classical Art Competition

Calling all students in Year 9 to Year 13 – this is your chance to enter a national classical art competition and win cash prizes!

This year’s theme is ‘Time and Memory in the Ancient World’. You can enter by creating a painting, drawing, photo, photography series or sculpture – you could explore sundials in the ancient world or take a more abstract approach to time/memory, it’s completely up to you to represent your idea in a creative and exciting way!

The deadline for your entry is Wednesday 20 December, and you will also need to submit a short piece of text (500 words or less). Imagine your piece is being exhibited in a gallery and write a description of your work, which explains its link to the theme, to be displayed alongside it.

Please read the guidelines carefully, including information on how to enter here.

Good luck and have fun!

Miss Kilby
Subject Lead Classics

Science Spirit Club

Book Review

Letters From Father Christmas by J.R.R. Tolkien

Every December an envelope bearing a stamp from the North Pole would arrive for J.R.R. Tolkien’s children. Inside would be a letter in strange spidery handwriting and a beautiful coloured drawing or some sketches.

The letters were from Father Christmas.

They told wonderful tales of life at the North Pole: how all the reindeer got loose and scattered presents all over the place; how the accident-prone Polar Bear climbed the North Pole and fell through the roof of Father Christmas’s house into the dining-room; how he broke the Moon into four pieces and made the Man in it fall into the back garden; how there were wars with the troublesome horde of goblins who lived in the caves beneath the house!

Sometimes the Polar Bear would scrawl a note, and sometimes Ilbereth the Elf would write in his elegant flowing script, adding yet more life and humour to the stories. Showcasing Tolkien’s imagination and creativity, which encapsulates the magic of Christmas.

You can purchase this book through the Northampton High bookshop by clicking here.

Miss Buxton
School Librarian

School Pictures - Christmas Order Deadline

Following Pret-a-Portrait’s visit this term to take student’s annual school photograph, they have announced their Christmas Order Deadlines. Please click here to view the deadlines for each product.

If you have not yet placed your order and would like to, please head to their website ( and enter your sitting ID. If you’ve misplaced your sitting ID, please contact Pret-a-Portrait directly on 0800 021 7626 or and they will happily assist.

The Pret-a-Portrait Team

SchoolBlazer - January Flash Sale

Following the recent, well received sale event, SchoolBlazer have decided to run a second ‘Flash Sale’ event in January, running from Thursday 4 – Friday 5 January 2024.

There will be up to 1/3rd off selected in-stock items at during the sale period, while stocks last.

If you have any queries about this, please feel free to contact SchoolBlazer directly at

Many thanks for your support!

The SchoolBlazer Team

Performing Arts classes available

The Pauline Quirke Academy of Performing Arts is thrilled to be bringing more sessions to PQA Northampton! With so many extracurricular activities running on the weekend, we are opening our new Friday evening academy to those who are usually busy at the weekends but still want to take part in the performing arts.

To experience a taste of our action-packed academy session, we’re delighted to invite you to our free launch event on Friday 19th January from 4:45-8pm at Northampton High School, for ages 6-18.  Alongside trying our lessons in Musical Theatre, Comedy & Drama and Film & Television, you’ll even get the opportunity to win a whole term of free classes!

For more information & to book your place, please visit Pauline Quirke Academy – Northampton ( or email Principal Alistair at

The Pauline Quirke Academy

Diversity and Inclusion Calendar 23/24: December

Northampton High School - Where girls learn without limits

Term Dates


Northampton High School
Newport Pagnell Road, Hardingstone Northampton NN4 6UU
T: 01604 765765 nhsadmin@nhs.Gdst.Net