TALENTED drama student Erin Holley was a star performer in this year’s GCSE results despite missing almost two months of school after her mum died earlier in the year.
The 16-year-old Wycliffe College student still managed to achieve one A* in religious studies, five As, three Bs and two Cs despite missing the mock exams after Christmas to attend her mum's funeral.
Erin’s mum, Linda Holley, had been diagnosed with breast cancer three times throughout Erin’s seven years at the school in Bristol Road, Stonehouse, and sadly lost her battle to the disease in January after it had spread to her liver.
“I missed quite a bit of school and even before mum died, " said Erin, who played Juliet in the school’s production before Christmas 2013.
"It was important that we got to spend as much time as possible together and so planned special trips like going to Disney Land."
Mrs Holley died on January 14 this year - just a few weeks before Erin's mock exams.
“My headteacher Mrs Burnet Ward came to my mum's funeral, which was only a couple of days before the exams and told me not to worry I could take them at a later time," said Erin.
“Everyone at Wycliffe has been so supportive and understanding it just felt like they really wanted to help.
"I has to have extra lessons to catch up and in some cases was only learning things a few days before my exams that other students had known for months.
“But my house mistress and my teachers were great. I still can’t believe that they were willing to give up their personal time to help me catch up and study so that I could get good grades in my exams.”
Erin will be staying on to study history, politics, English and drama at Wycliffe College next year – a place she calls her home.
Wycliffe College headteacher Margie Burnet Ward said: “I am so pleased for Erin who showed tremendous resilience in the face of such sadness.
“Her Mum would be so proud of her, as are we.”