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Hot Chocolate with the Head

Friday 23rd Feb 2024

It’s great to be back after half-term and to see lots of enthusiasm and learning across the school. Mrs Cochrane met with five deserving pupils this morning to enjoy a chat and of course a delicious hot chocolate.

First to tell the group about their achievement was Fatima (Y7) who has become our 1st triple Accelerated Reader Word Millionaire this year. Fatima shared with the group her love for books and is currently reading Legendary which takes the characters on thrilling adventures; her favourite genre. Mrs Cochrane was really proud of Fatima’s achievements and wishes her passion for reading continues into the future.

Maria (Y10) was next to tell the group about being selected to cook in The Rotary Club district final. Maria cooked a delicious menu including beef wellington and dauphinoise potatoes for main, and a trio of choux buns with chocolate orange sauce for dessert. Maria worked extremely well under pressure and produced a spectacular dish. Mrs Cochrane was excited to hear about the next round of cluster finals which takes place in Loughborough!

Erica (Y9) and Juppnie (Y8) were congratulated on being selected for taking part in our first United Kingdom Linguistics Olympiad which saw the group take on several language challenges against other schools. Working as a team, they had to de-code certain languages, use problem solving skills and find patterns within the languages to help give them the answers. Erica and Juppnie explained how they enjoyed the challenge and feel like they have a natural flair for languages. What a fantastic achievement, well done to all those involved.

Finally, it was a pleasure to speak to Amelie (Y9) who has been accepted onto Staffordshire County Netball Team. It was clear to see that Amelie had a passion for netball and is so excited to be involved in upcoming tournaments playing Goal Defence. Amelie explained that she trains 2 hours every Sunday which shows her dedication and perseverance, which is one of our core values. We wish Amelie all the success as a budding netball player.

If you’d like to nominate a student who has demonstrated one of our core values or has gone above and beyond at home or in school, please contact [email protected].



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Wellbeing Week

As part of Children’s Mental Health Week, Miss Senior organised a number of activities to raise awareness of the importance of speaking about mental health and wellbeing.

Along with sessions in registrations around the theme of ‘Express Yourself’, the students have had the opportunity to attend a self-defence class which promotes teamwork and confidence building. The session was led by an external coach who uses Boxing to help build resilience and promote wellbeing.  The students got the chance to work in pairs to try and retrieve pegs from each other and then worked up to use the boxing gloves and pads. Thank you to the PE Staff for getting involved too. It was great to see the energy and excitement amongst the students.

The next event that took place was a Tea & Talk in the hall which included a bake sale and mindful activities on table for the students to complete. The event was a huge success and £78 was raised from the sale of cakes for Place2be, a charity dedicated to improving children’s mental health.

Thank you to all those involved. If students or parents would like to speak to anyone regarding Mental Health support, please speak to your child’s Head of Year or visit the Wellbeing page on the School website.


Events Celebration
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On Wednesday 21st February Danny Mondesir, Managing Director and founder of Street Whyze Project, was invited back to talk to 240 Year 9 students to raise the awareness of youth violence, knife crime and community intervention.

Street Whyze Project was founded in December 2021 to campaign against knife crime in Burton-on-Trent and districts within the Midlands, which has grown into Danny using his real-life experiences to project a powerful message to young people in several sectors. His positive and aspirational approach was tailored to the sensitivity of the age group meaning the students were fully engaged throughout the session.

Danny’s insightful presentation highlighted several topics including prison, why people carry a knife, what young people can do to better themselves and ended with a thought-provoking video, based on a real-life stabbing in a school setting. The video really captivated the students and it was clear to see that they understood the message Danny was conveying.

Edward, a Year 9 Head Student said ‘"The session with Danny was really good. He was able to prove his point about the dangers and consequences of knife crime. He did this in a way that was relatable and allowed us to understand the importance of making good choices." 

As part of the presentation Danny went into depth about the importance of having aspirations, achieving goals, making wise decisions, understanding consequences and showing courage and integrity- which is one of John Taylor’s core values.

We’d like to thank Danny for his invaluable session and can’t recommend him enough for delivering such a compelling presentation. We encourage all Year 9 parents to talk to your children about the presentation and the learnings they took from it.

To find out more about Street Whyze Project visit

Year 9 article_section
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Polite request to parents regarding Palmer Close:

Please ensure you are not blocking access to Palmer close at the end of the school day.  The majority of residents who live down there are the elderly and often have carers visiting and at times emergency vehicles need to get through.  We have had reports of situations where parents are collecting their children and blocking the road, restricting access.

Thank you


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Good morning,

Please see attached the letter that was emailed to parents before half term regarding the compulsory fieldwork element of your son/daughter’s Geography A-Level course. This is known as the Non-Examined Assessment (NEA) and is worth 20% of the overall A-Level grade. This aspect of the course will be a focus in our Geography lessons after the Easter holidays. As a school we have a duty to ensure that all of our students have taken part in a 4-day fieldwork experience at some point during their Y12 or Y13 studies. This is a compulsory element of the Geography A-Level as it allows students to practice the skills and to collect the necessary data for their NEA.

Please read the letter attached regarding all the information in relation to the residential fieldtrip.

Please let me know if you have any questions regarding this.

Kind regards,

Miss K Barker

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Kate Barker
[email protected]

Year 12 Exams
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Please read the attached leaflet for more information about Measles and the MMR vaccine.

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As you are likely aware, the UCAT is a crucial component of the medical school admissions process, and half the battle is knowing where to start.

We want to support you and your students the best we can through this process, which is why I strongly recommend attending the upcoming virtual UCAT Conference on Sunday 3rd March, 11am - 2pm. These conferences are led by expert Chief Mentors who specialise in UCAT exam preparation. During the conference, we'll equip you with everything you need to approach the exam with confidence.

Sign up for our FREE UCAT conference on Sunday 3rd March here:

During this session, we will cover:
- An Introduction to UCAT
- Different sections of the UCAT: Example questions and how to answer them
- Common mistakes and pitfalls
- Ways of improving/practising speed reading and decision making elements
- When to book in your UCAT exams

To find out more about the UCAT exam, please visit our complete UCAT guide here: for more information.

Among the most crucial conferences we offer are the Get Into Medicine and Get Into Dentistry events, ideal for students aspiring to pursue careers in medicine or dentistry.

If you believe there are more students who haven't yet taken advantage of the free virtual LIVE Get Into conferences, I kindly ask you to share the details with them. Simply forward the following information to your students and colleagues:

For aspiring Doctors: FREE LIVE VIRTUAL Get Into Medicine conference dates:
Sunday 25th February, 9:30am - 3:30pm
Saturday 2nd March, 9:30am - 3:30pm
Sunday 3rd March, 9:30am - 3:30pm

For aspiring Dentists: FREE LIVE VIRTUAL Get Into Dentistry conference dates:
Saturday 24th February, 9:30am - 3:30pm

Students and parents can register for free at this link:

All aspiring doctors and dentists in years 10-12 / S3-S5 / NI11-13 are invited to register.

These conferences offer tailored advice for medicine and dentistry, covering a range of crucial topics including:
- Tactically choosing universities
- Personal statements
- Medical & Dental school interview skills
- Medical Leadership Programmes
- Awards Programmes
- Extracurricular activities
- Work experience
- Building a CV
- Applying for scholarships

Medical Registration Link:
Dental Registration Link:

Year 10 Year 11 Year 12 Year 13 Careers
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Welcome to our additional new style Celebration Newsletter, JT NEWS!

This will be published at the end of every half-term and at a glance will include a Student Spotlight, School Trips, Enrichment Activities, a Teacher Feature and so much more. We're really proud of our students and the fantastic activities that happen across school so wanted to share these highlights with you. 

Download and take a read below!

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11 Year 12 Year 13 Celebration
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Please be reminded that our new 'One Community Reflection Room' will be open for all students from Weds 21st February. 

Details below

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
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National Apprenticeship Week: Norton Rose Fulbright Law Firm

As part of National Apprenticeship Week, we had the pleasure of welcoming Hannah Ahmed, Solicitor Apprentice at Norton Rose Fulbright Law Firm and former student at John Taylor High School, who gave our Year 11 & 13 students an insight into life as an apprentice and why she chose this route to become qualified, rather than going straight to University.


Hannah said, “Looking back ‘Year 13 me’ would be shocked to find out at the age of 19 I work in a global law firm as a solicitor apprentice. This experience was truly a full circle moment as I could remember the last time I sat in that hall as a Year 13 where I had truly no idea where I would end up after A-Levels. Being able to present not just my degree apprenticeship route to students but the degree apprenticeship route in general, is something that would have been extremely useful for me as I was originally very set on the idea of university. I was able to discuss why I chose to pursue a degree apprenticeship, my experience with the application process and my experience so far; both with work and general life as an apprentice. At the end, it was great to be able to give some advice to the students who may be thinking of doing an apprenticeship. It was important for me to ensure the students leave with an open mind about choosing an apprenticeship, rather than taking the traditional University route. I feel passionate about shifting the narrative that an apprenticeship is an ‘easy route’ and to make apprenticeships commonly spoken about. I want to make the resources more accessible and grow students’ knowledge when they are deciding what to do after school. I would truly also encourage parents to take a look at the route with their children and hopefully by doing this we will shift any misconceptions about apprenticeships and create positive discussions.”


It was fantastic to see our students so engaged in Hannah’s presentation. A Year 13 pupil said ‘it gave me a thorough insight into the real life of a degree apprenticeship which seems a very welcoming environment after leaving school. Hannah was great at explaining the benefits and lessened the myths and negatives of an apprenticeship. It definitely opened my eyes to the different options available for after school.’

To find out more about Apprenticeships, please visit the links below.


Home - National Apprenticeship Week 2024, 5th - 11th February 2024 (


National Apprenticeship Week 2024 | What's on offer on Bitesize Careers? - BBC Bitesize

The Parent Perspective Podcast S3 E10 - The Minister is back: Robert Halfon MP and National Apprenticeships Week - Amazing Apprenticeships

Social Media: #NSW2024

Year 11 Year 13 Careers article_section
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Student Leadership opportunities are an important aspect of our offering which we encourage our young people to embrace at all stages of their time with us. Such opportunities equip our young people with the knowledge, skills and personal attributes to become successful individuals, through working within the school and wider community. Student Leadership at John Taylor High School takes various forms, with the aim to provide Leadership roles appropriate to many interests.

Our Sports Leaders and Young Sporting Ambassadors lead a range of different activities across the school with the aim of incorporating the local community; residents, primary schools and local businesses. For our Sports Leaders, this then contributes to their AS Levels.

To become a Young Sporting Ambassador, our students from Year 8 upwards, have to apply by writing a letter to Mrs Berry including why they believe they have the skill-set to take on this role around school. Once they have been successful, they are quickly put to work getting involved in a number of exciting activities across the school.

Activities include Community Afternoon Teas, Dance Workshops, Athletics Festivals, Delivering Christmas presents within the community, helping at sporting events and much more.

The latest event was the Athletics Festival which saw another thirty primary pupils embark on an evening of sporting fun in the Sports Hall. Led by our Sports Leaders, as part of their AS-Levels, they help set activities up, refereed races, organised the heats and cheered on the pupils as they took on the assault courses. The energy amongst the students was incredible. Despite the competitive nature of the event, the teamwork and communication between each other and the other schools was admirable. We hope the children had a fantastic time and got a taster into PE at John Taylor.

This half term the Young Sporting Ambassadors have been involved in writing letters to our elderly residents to take away with them after the Afternoon Tea which will take place in March. Our YSA’s wrote beautifully and included information about themselves and what they liked doing – the purpose of the letter was to put a smile on the residents’ face when they get back home and open the letter, often when the residents suffer most with loneliness.

The next event that the YSA’s volunteered at was our Dance Club Workshop. Thirty local primary pupils were invited to join us in the Gym to learn a dance routine choreographed by our dance club ambassadors.

As the primary school pupils watched the YSAs show them the routines, it was clear to see that the children were keen to get involved and learn the moves themselves. It was amazing to see how quickly they picked the routines up and how much enthusiasm and energy they all had. Not only were our YSAs teaching the routines, but they talked to the primary pupils about the importance of their formation and their spatial awareness which the children listened and adapted to perfectly. The primary pupils were so proud to receive their certificates, which the YSAs had handwritten. Well done everyone.

Thank you to our Sports Leaders and Young Sporting Ambassadors who have gone above and beyond to make these events a success. We will be opening the applications in May/June to Year 8 onwards to become a Young Sporting Ambassador for the start of September. Please speak to Mrs Berry for more information.

Events article_section
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John Taylor success at the County Cross Country Championships
It was a fantastic day at Betley Farm on Saturday (3rd Feb) for the Staffordshire Schools Cross-Country Championships. With 247 young athletes taking part, it meant that there were more pupils taking on the tough course compared to last year, which is brilliant to see. A big well done to everyone that took part and congratulations to those athletes who persevered and completed the challenging course in windy and rainy weather. 

Lots of John Taylor athletes were selected to represent East Staffordshire after qualifying at the Burton District Schools competition. Our students who completed were: 

Year 7 

Amelie C, Jacob H, Ollie S

Year 8 

Ameline H, Megan C, Freddie H, Oskar A 

Year 9 

Sian G, Oli Z 

Year 10 

Orla L, Issy H, Daniel S 

Year 11 

Tom S

A big well done to Oskar who finished 2nd in his Junior Boys Race  (yr8/9) and Issy who finished 8th in her Inter Girls Race (yr10/11). Both athletes have been selected as part of the Staffordshire Schools Cross Country Team and will race in the English Schools National Cross-Country Championships at the end of March. 

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11 Events
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As part of the Children's Mental Health Week celebrations John Taylor will be hosting their own Children's Mental Health Week after half term. We have delayed our Mental Health week due to all the fantastic activities for Career's and Apprenticeships that have been taking place this week.  
The week commencing the 19th February John Taylor pupils will have activities in registration based around this years theme of 'Express Yourself' and an assembly about the importance of speaking about Mental Health. Additionally, there will be a Tea and a Talk held in the school hall on Wednesday lunchtime, including a cake and tea sale and wellbeing activities for pupils to enjoy. 
 If any pupils would like to help with the Tea and Talk event please can they meet with Miss Senior at Lunchtime on Monday 19th February. Any cake donations to help raise money for the Place2be charity would be much appreciated. 
Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11 Year 12 Year 13 Events
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Year 9 Year 10 Year 11 Careers
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Well done to all the Year 11 Geographers who have been watching the Revision Videos that have been uploaded.  So far students have access to videos on

* UK weather Hazards

* Tectonic Processes 

* The Effects of Earthquakes. 

Please encourage Y11 to watch these videos as part of their revision at home. 

More videos will be uploaded after half term. 

Please get in touch to [email protected] if students have any trouble accessing.  

Thanks for your support 

E. Findon (Subject Lead For Geography)

Link to Videos

Year 11 Exams
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With various activities taking place across the school this week for Safer Internet Day which took place on Tuesday 6th Feb, 'Monkey' App was highlighted as a risk for children. Please can we ask parents to make youself familiar with the details below.

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Lincolnshire Training Hub, a part of Health Education England, is holding Should I become a Doctor on the 19th of February.


This presentation, held my medical students, is designed to help Year 9 – 11 students decide whether ‘Medicine’, or becoming a doctor, is for them. It could also be helpful for anyone else seeking information about the Medicine Application Process – including parents and teachers. Please note this course will touch on the basics of Medicine, and more detailed events for Year 12 students around the application follow throughout the year. Please reference our timetable on our website for more information.


It is will be held on the 19th of February 7-8:30pm on Zoom. Please fill in the sign-up form below to receive the log in details


The application form will close once all spaces are filled, therefore we encourage signing up ASAP.


The evening will include:

-        How do I know medicine is right for me?

-        The Application Process

-        The Medical Degree / Life as a Medic

-        Foundation Years (Post Degree)


The discussion will be led by our Student Ambassadors, who are all in varying stages of their medical degrees. There will be time at the end to ask questions.

Year 9 Year 10 Year 11 Careers
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