Queen Elizabeth's High School
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Morton Terrace
Gainsborough Lincolnshire DN21 2ST
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Email: office@qehs.lincs.sch.uk
Phone: 01427 612354
Fax: 01427 612856

Term 6 Live Newsletter 19/20

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Term 6 Live Newsletter 19/20

Hopefully, by the time you read this, you will have had a chance to read through our plans for next year and things will start to make sense. In essence, teaching will happen as usual in classrooms. However, the students will be sat in rows and not able to work in pairs or groups and the teacher will have to teach from the front and cannot interact with the students. Each year group is a bubble so students within that bubble can interact with each other, whilst still maintaining sensible distancing of course, but teachers must stay outside of the bubbles.

It will feel very strange but I am sure that we will soon adapt to this new way of working in the same way that we have adapted as a community to the school closure for most students. There is a great analogy for the process of learning something new which is helpful to consider during this time; we all start unconsciously incompetent whereby we have no idea of how bad we are at something, we then move to being consciously incompetent when we realise just how bad we are. However, we then move into being consciously competent where you have learnt something new but have to think very carefully about each step, and finally you become unconsciously competent when you can do the new thing without even thinking about it. On the 20 March we were all, staff, students and parents, at one of these stages but I think most of us are towards the end stage by now. It will be the same in September teaching and learning in a COVID-19 safe school.

Of course whilst the global pandemic has dominated this academic year, we still achieved a huge amount this year and I will be outlining some of those achievements in the final assembly.

Our thoughts are of course with the current Year 11 and Year 13 who are anxiously awaiting their results in the summer. A key lesson to learn from all of this is don’t rely on what you might do or intend to do, but make sure what you are doing now is as good as it can be. Students in Years 11 and 13 found that they were to be judged on what they had done and what they might do in the summer. However they did not have the chance to change that once we closed the school on 20 March. Those students who had done all of their work as well as they could at the time were in a stronger position than those who had perhaps done their work less well than they should, but planned to revise hard in the summer. Current Year 10 and 12 students should be aware of this. Whilst a second pandemic is unlikely we now know it is a possibility and so all students should make today’s work count. There is a great book, ‘Teach Like Nobody’s Watching’ by Mark Enser, perhaps students should learn like nobody’s going to mark it.

So as we look forward to the summer break with a most extra-ordinary academic year behind us I would like to wish all the community of QEHS a restful and safe break and, more than ever, look forward to welcoming everybody back in September.

Mr D Allsop



We would like to introduce the Senior Team 2020-21. I’m sure that you already know our Head Girl and Boy, Erin and Ben, but we would like to make everyone aware that, as we work as a team, anyone on the Senior Team can be contacted. This year Jaya, Davawn, Sarah, Aryan, Anas and Josh are our Deputy Heads, with Josh and Sarah also leading the School Council. Our other members are Lauren, Georgina, Ellie, Neve, Finnley and Arthana.

As a Senior Team, our aim is to make the student voice prominent in all decisions made. We are all unique and extremely driven individuals and will represent our large demographic of students and all their different ideas. We welcome students’ opinions and we will endeavour to tailor the school experience to best fit the constantly changing issues that may arise. With your help we can make lasting improvements for our school and school life.

Many of us take up other roles in school, for example as KS3 Prefects, helping with various House Events, being Lead Learners and Subject Ambassadors. We hope to be approachable and promise effective communication between all years. Since becoming part of the Senior Team in March we have already started working with the Year 11s who will be moving on to their post-16 options, making sure they have sufficient advice if they are coming to Sixth Form here or going on to college. We have also begun working on transitions from Year 6 to Year 7 and Year 9 to GCSE - looking particularly at subject choices.

Being in our last year at QEHS, we have all experienced the challenges that school life can bring you. In all of our decisions we want to assure you that we have your best interests at heart with a wide scope of viewpoints being discussed and explored. 

We look forward to working with you to improve your experience here at QEHS. 

See you in September!

The Senior Team 


Student successes can be celebrated in many ways - despite the lockdown.

Here is a selection of recent work that deserves recognition - WELL DONE TO YOU ALL!

Look out for other student successes on Twitter @QueenElizHigh

Daily tweets are shared throughout term time.

Ms Muir

Assistant Headteacher




QEHS is delighted to have been awarded with the Career Mark Accreditation in 2020. Career Mark recognises the quality of the independent and impartial careers education, training and guidance that we offer, ensuring our students leave with the confidence and skills required to enter the world of work and further/higher education. Career Mark Accreditation demonstrates that we are providing an efficient and effective careers programme through:


The effectiveness of our systems for planning, managing and integrating the whole programme


The effectiveness of an integrated programme of advice, guidance and support


The effectiveness of our curriculum to supports the development of learners’ knowledge, skills, understanding and attitudes


The accessibility, relevance, importance and effectiveness of information, the acquisition of skills to research and evaluate allowing for well-informed and realistic career decisions.

Full details of our careers programme are available on the school website: https://qehs.lincs.sch.uk/careers-and-guidance

Mr J Kingdom

Assistant Headteacher


Year 10 students were sadly denied their Work Experience Week this year. However, so as not to be at a disadvantage at the end of their school career, a Virtual Work Experience can be accessed through Oak National Academy:


Further details have been emailed to the Year 10 students and can also be found on the school website:


All Year 10 students are strongly recommended to follow the online programme, offering a range of experiences specifically written for the extended period of school closure.

On completion of the programme and the submission of suitable evidence, a certificate will be issued for the students' Record of Achievement.


Mrs J Thorpe

Work Experience Coordinator

Year 10

At QEHS we are proud to share individual successes. Here is a great example of how a team of students can work together to make a big difference to us all.

Well done to the 8S Drama Team!


Year 8

Easy to use, buttons taking you straight to the current QEHS news, what is not to like?

Use CODE 1620 to install and find out more below:


School Event

Throughout school closure the Technology Reward Board has been a weekly feature on Twitter. Here is a sample of some of the fantastic work our students have been busy submitting:

Reward Board 7
Reward Board 8
Reward Board 9
Reward Board 10

During the recent school closure the QEHS community (students, parents/guardians, staff and governors) have all had to adapt at a rapid rate, to increased online working. Many of us have explored and embraced a range of new ways of thinking and delivery, for the very first time.

The demand on schools to engage with a multitude of online learning platforms is therefore greater than ever. We currently use Twitter to supplement the information available on the school website and we have a YouTube channel, that is gradually being added to. for all of the current social media platforms used across the QEHS Faculties please see: https://www.qehs.lincs.sch.uk/contact-us/social-media



Assessment - back to normal for September

Assess photo.jpg

Assessing how students are getting on with their studies is a crucial part of life at QEHS. In normal times we issue each student with end of term grade cards which give an indication of engagement and performance in every subject, augmented by annual written reports and parent consultation evenings. This familiar routine was interrupted this year and getting it back on track is one of the school’s priorities for September.

Click the link to show the School Recording and Reporting Calendar for Terms 1 and 2, taken from the student planner.

Year 13 students will see that their exams are first, in Term 1. These exams are good practice for the students and also help staff to agree the students’ UCAS predicted grades, so vital for applications to universities. Year 11 then have their mock exams in Term 2, again a formidable milestone in every student’s career. 

All other students will be assessed as part of their normal lesson routine. These tests may take the form of quizzes, homework or even open book tasks, or may take the form of more formal written tests. We will report back to students and parents at the end of Term 1, by which time everyone should be back in the swing of things!

Mr J Kingdom

Assistant Headteacher


Supporting QEHS Students Through Their Learning Journey

QEHS is an academic institution and our core business is to educate our young people to the very highest standard. But learning isn’t simply about learning facts and figures; it’s so much more than that. We want our young people to love learning, to have skills for life and of course, to enjoy academic success. At QEHS we have developed a number of tools to help them to navigate their individual learning journey.

Year 7: The Learner Licence

Students in Year 7 earn their Learner Licence Award. Working with their tutors they identify instances where they have met the seven habits of learning. At the same time, they are taught strategies to develop these habits, habits that will serve them well for the rest of their lives.


Years 8 to 11: The Learner Standards  

Students in Years 8 to 11 are guided by the Learner Standards. Their teachers model and emphasise meta-cognitive techniques to help the students understand how we learn and to identify the methods that suit them best. Staff also nurture a love of learning and encourage students to behave in a way that facilitates a scholarly, academic atmosphere. Lessons are planned around learning techniques and students are rewarded for their meeting of the standards.


Image of VESPA

Years 12 and 13: VESPA   

Our Sixth Form students work through the VESPA programme with their tutors. VESPA (Vision, Effort, Systems, Practice and Attitude), is a workbook designed by two leading practitioners in post-16 education: Steve Oaks and Martin Griffin. VESPA aims to develop an academic mind-set for success and consists of a programme of self-development tailored towards sixth form learning. It uses an initial diagnostic tool to ascertain which of the VESPA areas students need to develop and then, through a minimum of 10 sessions, guides students through mind-set activities which aim to develop positive attitudes and a growth mindset. 


We hope that you find this a useful guide as we all work together, supporting the success and achievement of the young people under our care.


Ms M Muir and Mr J Kingdom

Assistant Headteachers


"The QEHS Messenger" has arrived! The new student newspaper was launched in June, and was well-received by both students and staff.


The Editorial Team have decided to publish the paper monthly, (with the exception of August) and look forward to distributing paper copies on our return to school. For now students and staff will receive QEHS Messenger via email, so please ask them to show you at home. The Editorial Team are now receiving articles from the wider student body, and although not all articles may make the final cut, why not have a go at submitting something.

We hope to bring you a traditional newspaper providing a reliable, balanced source of news, current affairs and lifestyle pieces, that also:

  • is fun/presented in a way that engages the students
  • allows a platform to share new School Council discussions
  • shares successes, from both in and out of school
  • includes regular bulletin information/calendar of events

If you have student news or views to share, please email your submissions to NewspaperEditorialTeam@qehs.lincs.sch.uk , upload direct to the school website: https://queenelizabethshs.schoolzineplus.co.uk/news?nid=12 or speak to a member of the team. The team includes: Alfie R, Elias S, Henry E, Isaac E, Molly H, Owen R, Tom B-R, Miss Kell and Mrs McGrath.

We encourage Subject Ambassadors and House Team Captains to write, whether it is a regular column or a one-off event that you wish to share. Perhaps you are an artist, with ideas on how the newspaper could be presented or include student artwork.

If you wish to give feedback on the issues you have seen so far click here


School Holidays

It is always with great fascination that we receive news of scholars gone by. The Archive Group delves with intrigue into new information that come to light, searching for previously unheard of details of life at the schools that thrived here in the past, and leading us to the present day QEHS.

When the Archive Group recently received a package, they found photos, a school cap and a letter from the granddaughter of Alumnus Edmund George Aldam (1906-1997). The cap is a rare 100 year old relic, to add to our collection of memorabilia, and hope to display on our return to normal school life. Inside it clearly bears Edmund's name, 'FORM V, GGS'. The school badge shows the viking longboat, but is very different to the QEHS badge we have today. I would hope to share the cap with the new Year 7 students as they research the origins of the school badge as part of their induction into the history of this fantastic school.

We hope that with this article, we will find further memorabilia - particularly from the girls' Gainsborough High School, as we celebrate it's 100th year; but with a much smaller archive at QEHS than that of the boys' Gainsborough Grammar School.

Edmund is pictured as a 16 year old boy near the centre of the photo, (middle photo) on the second row, behind the master wearing glasses.

This photograph of Edmund shows him at age 18, and later with his wife Viola, in a newspaper clipping about his life. After studying at Gainsborough Grammar School, Edmund worked locally for his father, before his varied career, led him to become a prominent figure in local government, still in the local area, until his retirement at the age of 78. Maybe some of you, or your families remember Edmund George Aldam (1906-1997).

Our thanks go to Mrs Angela Drane for sharing this information about her grandpa, wrote: "I know my grandpa would be delighted for the school to have these items".

Archive Group


“What mental health needs is more sunlight, more candor, and more unashamed conversation.”  Glenn Close.


Everybody claims to understand the difficulty when approaching the topic of understanding mental health. Most state the fact that we can sometimes become trapped within ourselves and that emotional pain can be translated into the feeling of physical pain - rather than it being an individual topic of its own nature. However, emotional suffering and an unstable mental health often go ignored in our busy day-to-day lives; with most of us forgetting or ignoring that vital part of our own wellbeing. It is easy to treat an unstable mental health as a 'phantom symptom' that can just be erased with time; but this should come with a warning: leaving poisonous thoughts or feelings to fester and grow, could transcend into a tornado of more dangerous thoughts and actions - provoked by this failure to understand one's mental health.

The attention that mental health awareness needs is often undermined by the images seen throughout the world of physical suffering and pain. Such images lead us to believe that 'somebody always has it worse than me'; possibly fuelling neglect and ignorance, when it comes to treating mental health. Many of us feel ashamed and selfish to have these feelings, so instead of sharing our worries, we choose to hide these feelings away - an attempt to 'not be judged by society'. Failure to address mental health issues can evoke further toxic or alarming thoughts; ensuing a life of suffering and insecurity, with the potential for terrible, tragic outcomes.

Unfortunately, it is a reality for some, that school could be seen as one of the optimal places for mental health to plummet. Some of us find ourselves in a constant battle of popularity with expectations to be the prettiest, the smartest and the most liked, which can lead to some students cracking under all the pressure. And, if you're not able to fit the 'status-quo', you can soon feel like an outcast amongst the hierarchy within the school. Teachers try their best to promote individuality and equality amongst everyone's differences, but deteriorating mental health can often go overlooked, especially if people believe their problems are insignificant in comparison to others.

At Queen Elizabeth's High School, we aim for every student to feel worthy of expressing their emotions in a no-pressure environment. The QEHS Community recognizes the difficulty of sharing personal issues with a myriad of different people. We at QEHS acknowledge that every individual is unique; some may feel uncomfortable talking to peers and friends, whilst others may feel uncomfortable talking to teachers or adults. This is why QEHS offers an array of different systems concerning student welfare and mental health; one of which is the student led Peer Listening System. The Peer Listening System offers all students the chance to connect with another, whether it concerns mental health and wellbeing or just general school fears. Another student may be able to offer guidance on many different areas throughout the school. Students are offered the opportunity to join the Peer Listening Scheme from Year 9 onward. As a group, Peer Listeners are given the opportunity to visit different form groups, year groups or classes to perform exercises in developing student respect and friendship amongst all students, in the respective groups. Throughout the years, many students have given thanks to the Peer Listening Team as they have helped them to feel more comfortable within the school environment. Whether that be through participating in group activities or even something as small as offering a smile in the corridor. Many Peer Listeners have learned through their experiences that little things (such as: waving or saying 'hello' in the corridor) can have a huge effect on somebody's mental health.

In addition to the classroom visits and group bonding activities, Peer Listeners also provide a drop-in service through which individuals or a group of students are able to talk through their unique issue that they may be having difficulty with; whether that be in school or in their friendship group. This additional support system is enabling students to talk through their issues with somebody that may understand better; students whom have been in that very position themselves. This is why the Peer Listening System is so effective. It opens another channel for student support and bonding. It allows students to flourish in a once uncomfortable environment; all through the simple comradely and meaningful connections offered by the Peer Listeners.

Evan Dickinson, Senior Peer Listener

The QEHS Peer Listening team is supported through QEHS Counselling Service

The QEHS Counselling Service has relocated to room C3 in College House. The service will continue for all students and staff to access throughout the summer break. Diane will be available to respond on a Monday only (with the exception of the August bank holiday), and can be reached by email or Google Hangouts in the usual way.

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The door is always open for you to take the first step.
Congratulations to Renee on receiving her certificate for Singing -  Grade 6!
Well done from all at QEHS.



It has been a strange year in so many ways and, as with most other aspects of life, the start-up for the EPQ projects for Year 12 students going into Year 13 has been very different this year.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, the EPQ is an optional qualification that we offer to all our Year 12 students, equivalent to half of one A Level in terms of UCAS points. To achieve the qualification, students select their own focus for study and prepare a 5000 word assignment, recording their developing skills of research as they go. This fantastic course allows students to investigate in detail a topic that they feel personally inspired by, whilst also gaining extremely valuable skills for the future.

Ordinarily the students who sign up for the course would make a visit to Hull University for access to the library and for a presentation on academic referencing; this year we have had to be creative in our approach to find alternative provision. The students have instead had access to a wide range of online resources as many libraries and universities have temporarily shared access to their e-books. In addition to this, Hull University have provided a virtual presentation about academic referencing so that students have not been disadvantaged while the campus is closed. Here at school we have not been able to meet with students in person to discuss plans for EPQ but have instead been adapting very quickly to our online learning programmes and have been able to share information and discuss EPQ via email and through the Google Classrooms that have been set up for all tutor groups. At the moment we have 53 students signed up for EPQ and we are delighted that so many have chosen to pursue this valuable and worthwhile qualification.

As a staff we are always hugely proud of the wide range of exciting and engaging titles that our students produce, some examples from last year are:

The ethics of using embryonic stem cells in research and therapy.

How are sea turtles are affected by plastic pollution?

A comparison of the 1929 wall street crash and the 2008 economic crisis.

Gaussian curvature and hyperboloids.

We look forward to seeing what our current cohort will choose to investigate! 

Mrs J Cropper

Year 12 Year 13

The current restrictions on large gatherings have made it difficult for our current Year 12 Oxbridge applicants to visit universities and gain the usual access to advice from staff at these prestigious institutions. But luckily for us we have, once again, been able to draw on the wealth of knowledge and experience from our QEHS Alumni. A former student, Gaia, who studied English at Cambridge and is now working as Schools Liaison Officer at St John’s College, Cambridge, contacted us to offer a Zoom Meeting with all our Oxbridge hopefuls. This was a fantastic opportunity for our students to gain personal advice directly from someone from our school who has recently been through the process and has a great understanding of what the Admissions Officers are looking for.

The turnout was high, so the group was split into two, and all who participated found the Zoom Meeting to be productive. Tips were shared on a wide range of aspects of the application process, focusing mainly on choice of college, effective personal statements and how to approach the interview.

If any potential Oxbridge applicants were unable to attend then please contact me for a summary of the advice shared.

Many thanks to Gaia for providing the opportunity for the QEHS Sixth Form and good luck to our Oxbridge hopefuls!

Mrs J Cropper


The Harley Open Exhibition 1 August - 1 November

For The Harley Open Exhibition, artists are invited (whether professional or amateur) to enter their work in the popular competition.

The Harley Open Exhibition is a celebration of 2D art, and gives artists, whether just starting out and experimenting, or experienced professionals the perfect opportunity to showcase their work.

Over the years, entries have been received from across the world as well as wonderful works from local artists, with a truly diverse selection of artworks in a variety of styles and media. 


"During the early period of lock down I painted this image 'Social Isolation'.

On a whim, I entered it into an open art competition at the Harley Gallery and I have just found out that my work has been selected to go into the Harley Open Exhibition! There were 2 rounds of judging – the first required a digital image [from which 220 images were selected to go through to the second round]. For the second round I had to hand deliver the actual canvas.

My work will be on display from the 1 August until 1 November at the Harley Gallery, Welbeck, Worksop, Nottinghamshire, S80 3LW, should you wish to visit. Prizes will be awarded at a later event, still to be confirmed."

Insert name of the Artist in Residence here!

Following the cancellation of GCSE exams in March this year, we have been looking at ways to support our students in building strong foundations for their A Level courses in September. Heads of Departments have done a fantastic job of creating bespoke bridging preparatory work for all of the students that have applied to our Sixth Form. There have been opportunities for students to receive regular staff support, with some departments setting weekly tasks since Easter.
It has been great to see how engaged our students have been with this work. Completing the tasks has helped to give some focus to their time during this difficult period, and as a result has also allowed students to fine tune their A Level choices. We have been able to work flexibly with students and staff so that as students  subject choices may change, they are still able to receive all the preparatory work in readiness to make a great start in September. 

Well done to all of the Year 11s, doing their best with the preparatory work and we look forward to welcoming you back soon.

 Mrs R Haldenby

Assistant Headteacher

Year 11

Congratulations to Emily (8S) for achieving first place in the QEHS Mayflower 400 Art Competition and to runner up Monty (7B).

Fantastic art work from both of you, which we will hopefully still submit to the Gainsborough Mayflower 400 Art Competition at The Old Hall on our return to school.


Well done to all of the students who entered the competition, make sure you collect your merits!

Year 7 Year 9

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