A Polish teenager who has been elected as Shirebrook Academy’s new head boy has told the Chad that his parents are proud of his achievement.
Jakub Klosowicz, 15, only arrived at Shirebrook Academy two years ago and couldn’t speak English.
But in that short time has become fluent in English, French and Spanish, and is one of the school’s top academic performers.
The keen musician faced strong competition for the role from around 20 other students, along with newly-elected head girl Kirsty Bradbury, also 15.
Jakub said: “I was encouraged to apply for head boy by teachers and staff, They said that I would be a good role model. Being head boy and girl is a big responsibility. Your uniform has to be perfect and you have to set a good example to the other students.
“I had to have a campaign and put up posters before being elected. I said that I wanted to show people that you should enjoy school and I wanted to share my happiness and enthusiasm with everyone. I have had a lot of opportunities at school and life is beautiful so you need to be happy.
“It is very nice of the students to have voted me head boy. My family are very proud and I am looking forward to it.”
The roles of head boy and girl involve being ambassadors for the school, representing the student body at events, greeting visitors, and leading the Junior Leadership Team made up of reps from each year group. About 20 prospective candidates from Year 10 were interviewed by senior staff and a shortlist of four boys and four girls were put forward for election.
Shirebrook principal Mark Cottingham said: “Jakub is very popular with staff and students alike, always has a smile on his face and an infectious enthusiasm for learning.
“Given the result of the referendum and the large leave vote in Shirebrook, and the well-publicised tensions in the community over the scale of EU migration into the town, Jakub’s election gives us all hope that our young people can forge a cohesive multicultural society where people are judged by the quality of their character and their actions, not by their nationality.
“Jakub’s story is quite remarkable. He came to England just two years ago with no English and is now one of our top academic performers as well as being an accomplished musician and composer and budding actor – his ambition is to be in Hollywood.
“Both Jakub and Kirsty embody our values of being hardworking, having a growth mind set, showing determination and resilience to overcome barriers and showing compassion and integrity. This makes them great models.”
Shirebrook has seen a significant increase in Eastern European migrants in recent years, partly due to Sports Direct’s main distribution hub being based in the town. In the recent Eu Referendum, the area voted Leave by almost 71 per cent.