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GCSEs 2017: The world's a stage for star student Englatina

englatina-ruci

Englatina Ruci achieved her GCSE just two years after moving to Britain

Englatina Ruci’s proudest moment was standing on stage at the Victoria Hall to compère an awards event – and double up as one of the night’s musical performers.

The show was held earlier this summer in front of an audience of hundreds of young people from schools across the city.

Now the Albanian-born student has topped off the success by achieving an A* in her performing arts GCSE at St Peter’s Academy in Fenton. She has gained the equivalent of 10 GCSEs altogether, including another A* in Spanish.

Englatina began studying the courses just months after arriving in this country in March 2014.

The 16-year-old, who lives in Shelton, said: “I moved here with my family because my mum wanted a better life for us. It was quite difficult at first because I came from a different background, with a different language.

“The first week, I had to pick GCSE subjects. I chose Spanish because I already knew the language from watching Spanish films and reading the subtitles.”

She also had a basic grasp of English as she’d won a place on an English course through her school in Albania.

“The best students got to do the course as a reward and it meant studying on Saturdays and Sundays,” she added. “Although I could speak English when I moved here, I still had to improve my language skills to be able to use it in every subject.

“I came into school early and stay late to practise it. The most hard thing though was getting used to all the timetables and homework here.

“Staff at St Peter’s were always there for me. I wanted to work hard and do well to thank them for everything they’ve done for me.”

It was a sign of how much her confidence had grown that she was able to co-present the education awards event on behalf of the City Learning Trust.

She said: “We also performed bits from Chicago. I had to get changed part-way through the show, ready for the performance.”

She is now planning to study musical theatre, geography and Spanish at college and is considering a career as a teacher.