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Welcome to the Sydenham School weekly e-newsletter: Edition 213


Message from the Headteacher

Dear Families

It is hard to believe that we have almost reached the end of the first half term back at school after the Summer holiday. How time flies! The students have continued to work well and take up the many opportunities offered by the school.

We have welcomed hundreds of families through the school doors who have come to look around in order to see if this school is the right choice for their daughter. Families have been impressed with the building, the students and the overall ‘feel’ of the school. We are pleased that Sydenham School is becoming increasingly popular and that the school is now heavily oversubscribed. We know that the ongoing success of the school is due, amongst other things, to the excellent partnership that we have with you, our families.

Next week on Thursday 19th October between 5 and 6.30pm there is an opportunity for Year 7 families only to come into school and meet with staff in order to find out more about the ‘Dare to be Challenged’ Year 7 project and how/what their daughters have been learning since they started Sydenham School in September.

This will be followed by a Parents’ Forum Meeting starting at 630pm and lasting for one hour. This second meeting is open to all families. The Parents' Forum will provide a chance for you to hear more generally about High Performance Learning (HPL) and to take part in some of the activities that teachers use in their day to day teaching to motivate and intellectually challenge the students. I do hope that you will be able to join us at either or both of these events. The more you understand about how your child learns, the more we believe that you can help them to be successful.

This half term ends on Friday 20th October at normal school time. The new half term starts on Monday 30th October. Please can you ensure that your child arrives at school in good time i.e by 8.40am.

I would like to wish you a restful and enjoyable half term when you get there.

Kind regards

Mrs Lowe


Women, Education and Power – 100 years of Sydenham School


‘The Time Lady’ Performing Arts School Production
It is 2027 and, due to political pressures and austerity measures, the Government has done a deal with the Cybermen that promises to revolutionise education. Gone is the need for real teachers, lesson plans and enrichment activities. Instead there is a headset and a remarkable piece of software that ‘teaches’ students everything they need to know to achieve outstanding examination results. 

Doctor Who and her sidekick, Tash, a year 11 Sydenham student, return to Sydenham in time for Tash to take her GCSEs.  However, something has gone wrong.  The Tardis has not returned them to 2017 as planned, but has sent them into this dystopian future.

In an attempt to convince Tash that this is not the education she wants, the Doctor takes her back, through time, to the opening of Sydenham School in 1917. Together they visit key moments in history where women have brought about political, social and economic change. 
Will they find a way to overcome the Cybermen and save Sydenham School for future generations?


‘Women, Education and Power’ : A Living Museum created by all of the  Faculties at Sydenham School
If you dare to face the Cybermen, come to our Living Museum that celebrates 100 years of Sydenham School as well as ‘Women, Education and Power’.  Walk through the grand reception and into our beautiful library where you will see archive material, as well as contemporary work created by our students.  Follow in the footsteps of past students into our Living Museum of research by students into women from many different disciplines and professions who have made an impact on the lives of us all.

Wednesday 1st and Thursday 2nd November 
‘Women, Education and Power’   6.00 – 7.00pm
‘The Time Lady’                                   7.00pm

News From The Library  

Wheelers ePlatform
We are very pleased to announce the launch of our new eBook platform, which gives our students yet another opportunity to engage in reading. We have made it as easy as possible for everyone to start borrowing from our eLibrary. Students simply download the Wheelers App to their electronic device or phone (out of school time) and use their school login and password. By clicking on the image below, this will take you to an introductory letter and written guide to start you off. Good luck!

Borrowing our eBooks is as easy as

1 Download the ePlatform app from your app store
2 Find our library and log in using your library ID
3 Browse and borrow an eBook to read on your device.

Happy reading!

Mrs Joseph
Library Officer


EcoSoc Gardening Club Collection

The Ecological Society are about to launch the EcoSoc Gardening Club (lead by Olga Olver and Lydia Swift  in year 13).  We will be working with students across the school and year groups to develop the garden at the back of the school, making it a valuable resource for both students and wildlife.
To help us, we need tools like spades, trowels, forks and pots; as well as seeds, plants and gardening gloves.

If anybody would like to donate to the cause please email Amy Vickers (Co-Curriculum Leader Science) at as soon as possible.

Thanks for your help!
President: Ecological Society

Duke of Edinburgh Update  

Our recruitment process for the 2017-18 cohort of Duke of Edinburgh Award participants is complete and we are pleased that we could accommodate everyone that applied to take part this year. We have approximately 100 students beginning their Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards.  We wish them the best of luck embarking on their own personalised adventures and look forward to seeing and celebrating their achievements over the course of the year ahead. 

We are also very pleased to announce that we currently have the highest completion rate in the Borough of Lewisham by a country mile. This is a reflection of the hard work, dedication and perseverance that our students put into the award.  Those students who took part last year and have completed their award will receive their awards on Monday 27th November.  More information on this to come soon. Well done everyone!



Royal Society of Medicine’s Careers Fair – Evening of Friday 10 November 2017 – 1 Wimpole Street, W1G 0AE

Every year, over 60 specialty stands make up the exhibition. These include Royal Society of Medicine specialty sections, Royal Colleges, the armed forces and other organisations that can give you information and advice on a wide variety of medical career paths.  If your daughter is interested in a career in medicine, do book a ticket asap:

Explore King’s College, London University

Visit - to find out more about these Wednesday afternoon tours and free seminars about applying for university.  (The 29 November date is already full).

to register for a place at this event.  Come along to find out more about apprenticeships – national and local employers will be speaking.


PE News

On the 26th of September, there was a Year 9 A and B team friendly match against Sydenham High School at home.

Both matches were exciting to watch with our players putting in a great effort and showing excellent movement around the court. The team work was impressive.

Unfortunately, Sydenham High School had a higher percentage of shots go in on the day and we lost both games. However, both of our teams showed perseverance and determination throughout each of the four quarters and excellent resilience. Well done to everyone for being such great sports- we are very proud of each and every one of you.

The PE extra curricular clubs have started off with a bang, well done to all of those girls that are attending regularly, Badminton, Football, Netball and Gymnastics are all proving quite popular and many of the girls skills are developing well. (phot attached)

A big well done to those Sports Leaders who have qualified last year and are now organising and helping with our lunch time clubs for Years 7 and 8. A lot of time and effort goes into preparing these Leaders to get to the place that they are now and they have not let us down.

Well done to:


Football Match: Sydenham School vs Hays Bromley

On the 28th September 2017,we played a friendly football match against Bromley Hays. We decided to play two halves of 20 minutes. In the first half Sydenham were adapting to the size of the pitch as it was a full sized football pitch and we are not used to playing on it. We are used to training on a small multi-surface court here on site. As we were getting our bearings and trying to fill the space we let our guard down and Hays managed to score two goals. This brought the score to 2-0 by the end of the first half. However, both teams played very well. Our player of the match was Veronica who “ had strong defence and fantastic footwork”. Lia also played well especially when she had the ball up at the front of the pitch.

Another member of the Year 8 team had only just joined and she played extremely well. Mika kept hold of the ball and never gave up. Well done Mika. Elodie and Imogen were strong defenders as every time the ball come to them they kicked it away from the goal. Cavell saved many goals! When the full time whistle blew the final score was 2-0 meaning that we didn’t allow any goal in for the second half. We were happy with how we had played considering this time last year we lost 9-0 to the same team. So it means we are defiantly getting better. On the way back we were happily singing songs in the minibus. We would like to say a big thank you to our driver and coach Ms Downey,

Match report by Kitty 8H

Year 8 Indoor Athletics LSSSA Competition 1st round

On Thursday 5th October 2017, 8 students were picked to go to the Year 8 Indoor Athletics Competition which included the following activities: Shotput, Vertical Jumping, Speed Bounce, Long Jump, Triple Jump, 8 laps, 6 laps, 4 laps, 2 laps and Relay. The atmosphere was light hearted and energetic as the event started off with all the running events. Each school cheered their runners on as they ran their laps and were timed with a stop watch. After all of the running events were finished we moved on to the field events and each participant went off to sign up at their event. While we were taking part in the activities, we made some new friends with some of the students we were competing against and shared some past sport experiences with each other.

We also rotated around to a different activity and we went over to check up on our classmates and cheer them on. Lastly, after all the field events were completed, the competition was almost finished. There was only one more running event to do, the biggest event of them all: relay. In teams of four, each school lined up and started the race, running against each other. We came first in this race. Once that was completed the competition was over, signed off with a speech from one of the competition organisers and a reminder that the results of whether your school would move on to the next competition would be sent out by Monday the 9th October. Overall,  Sydenham School came second in the competition which means that we are through to the next round which will be held in January 2018.

Aminata 8S

Alina 8Y, Aminata 8S, Florence 8Y, Anisha 8D, Kitty 8A, Charlotte 8S, Mary- Jane 8A, Freya 8Y


Netball Fixture

Sydenham's A and B team played a friendly netball match against Trinity School on Thursday 5th October. The B team played the first half well, using great technique and landing a goal. The half finished 5- 1 to Trinity.  After switching some positions, the A team resumed the second half. Sydenham School bounced back scoring another 2 goals, though Trinity played very smoothly. The match ended 9-3 to Trinity and although Sydenham lost we really enjoyed ourselves and were able to recognise those aspects of our play that we still need to work on. We are looking forward to another tournament which is taking place soon where we will have the chance to play Trinity School, and others, once again.

Queenie 9H

5K Cancer Race for Life, Muddy Run

Well done to Jade and Ruby of Year 11 who completed the 5K Cancer Race for Life at the weekend.


9S Charity Cake Sale

On Monday 2nd October, members of 9S held a cake sale. Students from the tutor group were busy over the weekend baking cakes. This was to support the islanders in the Caribbean who were affected by the recent hurricanes. We raised £52.37 and we are still getting more money from our sweet in a jar competition. We had a selection of cakes, which included lemon and poppy seed, brownies, cookies and rice crispy cakes.

Maya & Grace 9S


Holiday courses

Click the links for info regarding Holiday Courses

Lewisham Junior Orchestra

Rock & Pop School

Parental Contributions to the School Fund

Thank you to all those families who have made a donation to the School Fund. Over 130 families have made a donation of £30 and it is this financial support which enables us to continue to pay for the extras in school, for sports coaches and specialist teachers, for the school mini bus and to support educational visits and trips and to continue to subsidise music in school.

Our focus this term is to raise enough money to establish the school allotments. We are setting up a Gardening Club and the allotments will be used in Science lessons, by other subjects, by the Eco Society and our soon to be formed Gardening Club.  We will be buying equipment and plants and seeds. Eventually we will need a poly tunnel too, so any financial assistance is very welcome.

We have suggested that if every family contributed £30 per year, we would be able to maintain our extra curricular clubs and activities at the current level as well as continue to develop our social spaces.

Thank you for your continued support.


Cashless Catering

As you know we moved to cashless catering last term and we have seen a big uptake of students having school lunch which is good news. We wanted to remind families that it is important that students have enough money in their accounts to buy lunch as the catering company have no process for going “overdrawn”. Some students have bought a snack at Break time and then realised they don’t have enough money left in their account for lunch. You may want to discuss this with your child and agree a daily or weekly spend limit.

A set lunch costs £2.30 per day and break items around £1.

New menu

We will be introducing a new menu after half term with a healthier and more balanced focus. I know some students will be unhappy that they will not be able to pick pizza everyday but as a school with a focus on the whole child we are working with Chartwells to develop a bespoke menu for our school that is both popular and healthy.  The menu will be on our website by next half term so you may want to have a look and talk to your child about making healthy choices.

We are also working with Chartwells to develop the Break time offer, again to reduce some options and increase other food choices.

We welcome feedback and we will be reviewing the changes with the Student Council later next term.

Kind regards,
Joanne Smith
Director of Resources


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