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House SystemFor hundreds of years, DHFS had a House system. Following a 30-year absence, a House system was re-introduced in 2011; the original four Houses (Fanshawe, Baggaley, Spaven and Millican) were joined by two new ones (Buxton and Gosforth) to reflect the school's more recent history.


About the Houses

Learn more about each House's historical meaning and links with the school.

House SystemFanshawe House

  • House colour: Red
  • House mascot: Phoenix - A mythical bird that was supposed to live forever. It bursts into flames every 100 years, to be re-born again.

Fanshawe House is named after Thomas Fanshawe, the nephew of Henry Fanshawe who started the school in 1579, following the wishes of his Uncle’s will after his death. Thomas Fanshawe's initials "TF" are found on the school badge.

The Fanshawe Family lived in Fanshawe Gate in Holmesfield since 1260 and was a powerful local family. Henry Fanshawe was the Chancellor of the Exchequer for Queen Elizabeth I in 1566. This is represented still today by the checked square in the school badge.

Fanshawe House is one of the school's original three Houses.

The Phoenix became attached to the School in 1993 when large parts of the buildings built in the 1970s burnt down. Large parts of the school were rebuilt – hence the Phoenix. A Phoenix statue in the main entrance of the school and the "Phoenix Hall" is a constant reminder of the fire.

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House SystemBaggaley House

  • House colour: Blue
  • House mascot: Falcon - The peregrine falcon, native to Britain, is the world's fastest animal. It is an intelligent bird of prey, famously kept by Kings and Queens of England for their hunting ability.

Baggaley House is named after the school's longest serving Headteacher, Charles Baggaley (1888-1926).

During Mr Baggaley's 38 years as Headteacher the school grew from just 13 boys to 175 pupils. Taking in girls for the first time in 1899. Mr Baggaley was an accomplished French linguist and founder member of the Association of Head Masters. When he was appointed, Mr Baggaley was paid a salary of £100 a year and could live in a nearby house free of charge. He was a passionate gardener and was known as "Boss Baggs".

Baggaley House is one of the school's original three Houses.

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House SystemSpaven House

  • House colour: Green
  • House mascot: Bear - A once native wild animal of Britain but extinct from the British Isles now for many years although many bears were kept as performing creatures up until the late Victorian era. Bears, like humans are versatile omnivores with a reputation for being gentle giants until threatened when they can be very fierce. Bears are a common mascot in many crests and badges across Britain.

Spaven House is named after Miss Lillian Spaven, Art Mistress (1906-1925).

Miss Spaven designed and made the memorial window in the original 1867 Fanshawe building previously an assembly hall, now used as the E-Learning Centre.

The window shows St. George with the words "In honour of the old boys of this school who gave their lives in the Great War".

Spaven House is one of the school's original three Houses.

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House SystemMillican House

  • House colour: Yellow
  • House mascot: Lion - The lion has been the English royal mascot since the Norman King Richard. Henry Fanshawe was the Chancellor of the Exchequer for Queen Elizabeth I which is why the three English lions and "ER" (Elizabeth Regina) can be seen in the school badge today.

Millican House is named after Norman S. Millican, Head Teacher for 27 years between 1926 and 1953.

Mr Millican and his family lived in the house currently used as Student Services. It was then known as "New Hall".

Mr Millican placed great emphasis on service beyond self achievement. He built up an impressive cadet corps.

Millican House was added to the original three Houses in the 1960s.

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House SystemBuxton House

  • House colour: White
  • House mascot: Unicorn - A mythical horse-like creature with magical powers and a single horn. The lion and unicorn are mascots on the coats of arms of our current Queen Elizabeth II.

Buxton House is named after Mrs Gladys Buxton whose name was used for a school opened in 1960 to serve children in the Holmesdale area of Dronfield.

In 1960 Mrs Gladys Buxton was the Chair of Derbyshire Education Committee.

Gladys Buxton school later merged with Fanshawe and Gosforth in 1990 to become The Dronfield School. The Gladys Buxton buildings are used today for adult education and the youth service.

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House SystemGosforth House

  • House colour: Black
  • House mascot: Dragon - A mythical creature associated with ancient Britain (King Arthur and St. George). Dragons had a reputation for being intelligent and magical creatures, often feared for their fire-breathing abilities.

Gosforth House is named after the Gosforth School which was opened in 1953 to serve children on both sides of the Drone Valley.

Gosforth School later merged in 1990 with Fanshawe and Gladys Buxton Schools to create The Dronfield School.

The Gosforth School buildings were used to accommodate students in Years 7 to 9 until the split site school moved all students onto the Fanshawe site in 2004.

The Gosforth School buildings were finally demolished and the land sold for private housing and a community sports facility.

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House Competitions

Throughout the year, a range of House competitions take place. These are across all faculty areas for all year groups and occur at regular intervals throughout the year. The overall Inter-House competition winner receives a trophy at the of end of the year.

Competition areas

There are five areas to compete in:

  • Sports: Football, rounders, table tennis, handball, netball, athletics. Run in the last week of half-term, over three lunchtimes.
  • Challenge: Focuses on a variety of talents such as beatboxing, dance, singing. Run over three lunchtimes prior to the sporting events.
  • Creative: A challenge which focuses on creative skills. These may include, stories, graffiti art, fashion, film and many more. These creative competitions will be set at the beginning of the term, to be handed in at a set date.
  • Attendance: Houses will compete for the best attendance during each term.
  • Events: Houses will compete for the highest number of positives-negative events during each term.

Point system

The point system for each competition is the same ensuring all competitions are as equally important;

  1. 25 points
  2. 18 points
  3. 15 points
  4. 12 points
  5. 10 points
  6. 8 points

House trophies and shields

  • House Cup (x5): Winners in each category will receive a termly trophy.
  • House Shield (x5): At the end of the year the overall winners in each category will receive a shield.
  • House Champions: Overall winners in all categories will be awarded the 'House Champion' cup.

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House Captains

Students have the opportunity to lead and support their House by becoming a House Captain. Each House can have up to six house captains; two lower; two middle; and two upper school representatives. The students are elected to become house captains for the year and play a vital role within the house system.

Their responsibilities include:

  • Becoming positive role models for the House and school, ensuring they wear the correct uniform, have outstanding attendance and punctuality, positive behaviour in and around school, and are making progress in their learning.
  • Assist and support the House Progress Leader and House Support Manager with daily and weekly tasks.
  • Help coordinate the teams for the inter-house competitions, ensuring the house is well represented.
  • Develop into ambassadors for the House and school, representing the school within community events, interview processes and parents evenings.

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What can I do for my House?

  • Collect House Points:
    • Achievement points (+ House Points)
    • Behaviour points (- House Points)
  • Compete in sports and non-sports competitions
  • Cheer on your House teams in sports and non-sports competitions

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Related information

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