Bright teenager wins £76,000 sixth form scholarship

Sukai Secka, 15, has won a £76,000 scholarship to study A-levels at Cranleigh School, Surrey. Pictur

Sukai Secka, 15, has won a £76,000 scholarship to study A-levels at Cranleigh School, Surrey. Picture: Mark Soanes - Credit: Mark Soanes

A bright teenager will be swapping Canning Town for a sleepy village in Surrey after winning a £76,000 scholarship to a top fee-paying sixth form.

Sukai Secka, 15, she takes up her places at Cranleigh School to study A-levels in English literature, politics and history next September.

Notable alumni at the independent school include film director Patrick Marber, former Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger and Conservative MP Adam Holloway.

Sukai was supported through the application process with writing personal statements, applications, preparing for entrance exams and selection interview by the Eastside Young Leaders’ Academy (EYLA).

Sukai, who wants be a politician, was offered a place after coming through a gruelling series of assessments and interviews.

She said: “I can’t wait to get to my new school and start shaking things up a little bit. It is a very white and middle/upper-class environment.

“I got on very well with the students on my assessment day because they are all very motivated to do well, I am like that too.

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“I am also different to them because I grew up in east London which is quite a tough place and has lots of diversity.

“The reason I think they accepted me was because I offer a very different perspective on life to their current students.

“Everyone should know how to mix with a diverse range of people.”

Sukai follows in the footsteps of former pupils Iyanuoluwa Agbedejobi and Teniola Akinola who have won places at fee paying schools.

Iyanuoluwa took up a £33,000 a year place at Wellington College in 2017 while Teniola will joined City of London Freemen’s School last September on a £30,000 scholarship.

Headteacher Stephen Gillatt said: “Like Iyanuoluwa and Teniola before her, Sukai has set the bar for other students to follow.

“As headteacher at this school I can tell you there is no shortage of intelligence or ambition. What we are instilling in our students is the confidence and belief that they can achieve.

“This is now the third year in a row the school have sent students to top fee-paying schools. We want our students to see the success of their peers and be inspired.”