Latest Letters Home I Sydenham Website I SIMS I My Maths I Sam Learning
Follow us on: Twitter
Welcome to the Sydenham School weekly e-newsletter: Edition 225


Message from the Headteacher

Dear Families

I hope that you have been enjoying this glorious weather and making the most of it to relax and enjoy some positive time with your children. We know that this time of the year can be stressful for those students in particular who are taking their exams at GCSE, A Level and in BTECs. It is important that you make sure that as your children are focused on their revision and working especially hard, that they have sufficient breaks and ‘rest times’. It is easy for some students to become overwhelmed with the many things asked of them at this time. Staff are on hand to support so please do let the school know if there is anything that we can do in addition to ease these last couple of weeks before the exam season ‘proper’ begins. Please can we also reinforce the importance of ensuring that you send your child to school with enough water in a bottle to keep sufficiently hydrated throughout the day.  Whilst the weather is still somewhat variable it is humid enough to make sure that a bottle of clear, plain water is added to school bags.

We hope to be able to confirm with Lewisham Council when the road improvement works will be completed on Dartmouth Road. We are aware that the roadworks are making the journey to school a little trickier for some students. The vast majority of our students however, continue to arrive at school in good time every day. We would be grateful if you could reinforce with our students the importance of continuing to cross Dartmouth Road safely as vehicles sometimes drive along the road at excessive speeds including after school.

I would like to thank students and staff alike for all of their hard work so far this term. I hope that you have a lovely, long weekend when you get there.

Kind regards

Mrs Lowe


Debate Mate Cup Competition


Three of our teams participated in the Debate Mate Cup at Goldsmith’s University last Thursday and as defending regional champions we hoped to retain our trophy. I am delighted to announce that we did indeed retain our title and out of 34 teams that entered the competition, all three teams were placed in the top 5 and they were all undefeated throughout the competition. These results mean that we have secured a place in the ‘Debate Mate Cup Finals’ in June.

Sydenham 1 won the competition against St Matthew's School 1 - Maya, Nayah, Abby, Nancy, Amelie and Azeezat.

Sydenham 3 was placed 4th  (we missed 3rd place by 1 point) Irene, Saidah, Tanisha, Ruth, Suraya (who won the prize for best floor speech in the competition)  and Nadia.
Sydenham 2 was placed 5th ( these are our Year 8 and 9 students)  Zara, Lola, Aminata, Selin, Aoife and Lilian.

Novice Cup
Our Novice team also did extremely well and is ranked 10th in the top 50% of participating schools in the country.  Well done to Jada, Nyobi, Lillian, Latifa and Thrishelle.
What a fantastic performance from our young students!
We wish them all the best for the UDL and Debate Mate Cup national finals.
Ms. Virgo-Furrs
Debate Mate Lead Teacher

Sydenham School are ranked the number 1 team going into the debate mate cup final. Please see the link for a video on their Facebook page:

Lewisham Book Award 2018  

Last Friday, Sydenham School hosted the Lewisham Book Award. Eighty students from schools across the borough worked collaboratively in mixed teams, their task being to present and sell their book to the ‘Dragons’ using a PowerPoint and as much verbal persuasion as possible.

Everyone showed great teamwork and enthusiasm and for their efforts, Sydenham student, Sylvia 7N, along with students from Prendergast School, Prendergast Vale and Bonus Pastor Schools came 1st. The three top teams came away with medals and all participating students received books as prizes.

The students also had the opportunity to listen to a talk by Ally Sherrick, who has just released her second book called 'Buried Crown'. As an added reward for their efforts over the past few months, we gave each of our 11 participating students a copy of Ally’s book, which she personally signed for them after the event.

After the awards, we had an author-signing event for students from all of the schools that took part  in the Library, with Tamara Macfarlane, Ally Sherrick & Gareth P. Jones.
And finally, there is a wonderful new children’s bookshop, which opened on Stanstead Road last week called   Moon Lane Books. Do make sure to pay them a visit.

Happy reading!
The Library Team


Employability Day – all Year 10s – Thursday 10 May 2018 – all day

All Year 10 students and parents should  have received information about the Employability Day which will be taking place on Thursday 2 May.
All students will receive a mock interview in the morning from a team of external employers/businesses.

In the afternoon we have arranged for the students to hear from Dr Jean O’Hara, one of the most senior doctors in the NHS.  Please speak to your child about what a privilege it is to have Dr Jean O’Hara come to the school ,speak about her career and about celebrating 70 years of the NHS.

Dr Jean O'Hara grew up in Hong Kong in the 1960s, lived in an overcrowded flat with basic sanitation and slept on a straw mat on the floor until she was 15.​
Dr O'Hara left her family and came to London 40 years ago to study medicine, qualifying as a doctor in 1983 and as a psychiatrist in 1988. She has worked in the NHS for 35 years.
Dr O'Hara chose to specialise in understanding and treating mental illness in people with learning disabilities and has taught and published extensively in academic journals.
In January 2017, she became National Clinical Director for learning disabilities making her the most senior doctor and psychiatrist in England in her chosen career.

Sadler's Wells Theatre- Sutra


On Wednesday 28th March, the Year 12 and 13 A Level Dance class travelled to Sadler’s Wells Theatre to watch the performance ‘Sutra’ by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. The dance includes 19 Buddhist monks from the Shaolin Temple in China who use the choreography to explore the philosophy and faith behind their tradition and its relationship with Kung Fu using a modern and contemporary context, East vs West. The monks perform breathtaking Kung Fu skills to demonstrate how they relate spiritually to animals and the environment and how they blend faith and physical strength as part of their tradition. Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui worked alongside Antony Gormley the world famous artist, who designed 21 wooden crates, which the monks cleverly used to create shapes and formations, such as, skyscrapers, dominoes, boats, beds and a lotus flower, even flipping them over to create a sense of a rippling pond. 

Another aspect that made this dance original and stand out was the combination of elements of martial arts movements, ballet and contemporary dance. Likewise, the musical accompaniment combined the religious chants of the monks with traditional orchestral compositions.
The purpose of this visit was to be able to experience Sutra live, as it is a dance we are required to study for A Level. However, we gained much more than this, as the unique and diverse performance will inspire our own creative works in class by making us think more 'outside the box' about the way different styles can work together in harmony to convey an interesting and exciting piece.

By Josie Hammond-Stones


Year 10 Geography Field Visit to the River Darent

On the 19th and 20th April, Year 10 Geographers visited the river Darent in Kent. The aim was to collect primary data for the physical geographical enquiry. Both days had glorious weather, members of the public were out walking their dogs, paddling and picnicking by the river. The students behaved very well, worked hard and measured the width, depth, velocity and sediment size at four sites along the river.
Mr S.Glendinning

The sun was shining, the water was flowing and the other students on my team made the experience very enjoyable. Nancy and I were lucky to use the waders and venture into the deeper parts of the river. We took part in experiments and executed tests, explored four sites and left exhausted, drenched but happy to do it again.
Nayah-Renee 10M

Everyone was excited about the day ahead of us. We put on our wellies and went to the first site. We were reluctant to go in to the river at first, but slowly one by one we went in. We collected data and wrote the information in our booklets. We walked through the countryside and took in the views. We collected pebbles and stones. We left wet but I would do it all over again.
Ibiyemi 10S



Year 9 and 10 LSSSA Rounder’s Tournament

On Wednesday 25th April some of the Year 9 and 10 Rounders team went to Sydenham High School's cricket ground to play a rounder’s tournament against other Lewisham schools. There were 5 teams in total and Sydenham came 2nd overall in the competition. We played Knights Academy, Prendergast Vale, as well as Sydenham High A and B team. When the results were read out it was announced that Sydenham High School and both Sydenham teams came first but it then went down to how many rounders we had. Overal,l we had the 2nd most rounders and therefore came 2nd. We are all happy about this result and aim to work hard in training to become even more successful in the future.

Written by Bea Year 10

Well done to all of the students who took part.

Image result for beauty bankSYDENHAM SCHOOL BEAUTY BANK
Hygiene poverty has been described as one of Britain's biggest hidden problems. For thousands of people in this country living below the poverty line, sanitary products and soapy showers are an impossible luxury. The Beauty Bank project was set up by two journalists, to help tackle this crisis. So to help this cause, Sydenham School will be collecting products and sending them to the Beauty Bank. Here is the list of suggested items to bring in. 
Sanitary towels, tampons, moisturiser, deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, combs, hair bands, lip balms, face wipes, hand gel, baby lotion, soap, face wash, spot cream, shaving foam, plasters, lotion, lipstick and sunscreen.
Please do not send in any sharp items.
Please deposit your items at The Beauty Bank in medical room. The Beauty Bank will be open until May 25th.
Thank you for your support, Abbey Reyes and the Prefect team.



Windrush’70 Celebrations in Lewisham

On behalf of the Windrush Foundation and with the support of the Mayor of Lewisham, I write to invite teachers, students, their parents and guardians to an event that celebrates the 70th anniversary of the arrival of post-war Caribbean migrants on the ship Empire Windrush at Tilbury Docks in June 1948.  The event on Thursday 21st June 2018 from 6.30pm at Catford Broadway Theatre is a celebration of their contributions to the rebuilding of Britain after World War Two.  It will also be an occasion to remember residents in the borough who have helped to make Lewisham a better place in which to live over the decades.

The event will include tributes, story-telling, poetry, calypso, steel band music.  To book tickets to this free event please use the following link:
Further information about the Windrush Foundation’s community work can be found on the website:

Thank you for considering this request and we very much hope you can join us to celebrate the 70th anniversary.
Yours sincerely,

Arthur Torrington CBE

Please reply directly to this email if you would like to unsubscribe to our school newsletters.