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Pair of students who arrived at Haggerston School from Colombia and Bangladesh five years ago achieve stellar GCSE results

PUBLISHED: 16:28 23 August 2018 | UPDATED: 16:31 23 August 2018

Estefania Gorzon and Tahmid Rahim, both joined Haggerston School five years ago from their homes in Colombia and Bangladesh. Photo by Ben Mole

Estefania Gorzon and Tahmid Rahim, both joined Haggerston School five years ago from their homes in Colombia and Bangladesh. Photo by Ben Mole

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A pair of students couldn’t hide their smiles this morning after achieving A* level grades at GCSE - despite joining their school unable to speak a word of English.

Estefania Gorzon and Tahmid Rahim, both joined Haggerston School five years ago from their homes in Colombia and Bangladesh.

It came as the Hackney school posted top results with more than a fifth of students scoring all grades 7, the equivalent of an A.

More than 10per cent of all students at Haggerston School achieved seven A grade marks or above in their best eight subjects.

Estefania, from Hackney, who achieved one 9 grade, five 8s, two 7s and one 6 and will now study science and business studies at sixth form.

She said: “When I arrived at the end of year seven, I couldn’t speak any English. I went to a languages club at the school every single morning and evening to catch up and join in with classes.

“By the end of year eight I was fluent in English. I was always the top of the class in Colombia, where I lived with my mum, so my family had high hopes for me.

“When I opened my results today I started crying, I just can’t believe I got a 9, I never expected to do so well. I am so happy.”

Tahmid, 16, from Hackney, who joined the school when he was 11-years-old, said: “When I started in year seven I didn’t understand any English, I remember sitting in an exam and looking at the paper thinking ‘I can’t do any of this’.

“I had so much support from teachers and friends, they helped me understand things. I didn’t become fluent in English until two years ago but I still passed my GCSEs.”

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