THE headmaster of the Urswick School, Richard Brown, has paid
tribute to Shereka Marsh, the 15 year-old prefect who was killed on
22 March (above).
On Tuesday, Mr Brown, who has called Shereka a "shining star",
said: "The dominant activity of her life was her academic study.
She was a hard-working girl who was going to be academically
successful. She had applied to the sixth form, and would have got a
full set of GCSE grades and gone on to do A levels."
Shereka died after being shot at a birthday party at a house in
Hackney Wick, London. A 15-year-old boy has been charged with her
"This is the first time we have lost a child in a violent
death," Mr Brown said. "There is no issue about weapons, gangs or
that sort of behaviour in the school, but, unfortunately for a
significant group of young people that go to school in Hackney,
some of the issues around gangs and guns and violent crime are a
Shereka had not been involved "at all" in these problems, he
said. "The police are clear on that, and every person who has any
knowledge of what happened is clear on that. She was an innocent
victim." In January, she had been chosen to accompany the Jamaican
High Commissioner on a visit to the school. Mr Brown recalled her
coming to his office to collect a photo of the visit at the end of
the day - she had "hugely enjoyed" it. Shereka was a sports
prefect, and a gifted athlete.
The school chaplain, the Revd Chris Ferris, described her as
"bright, bubbly young girl". He has been supporting pupils and
staff. A picture of Shereka is on display in the school chapel, and
pupils have filled a book of remembrance.
He said that pupils had suggested holding a collection for
Shereka's mother. Facilitated by the the Worshipful Company of
Cordwainers, which supports the school, the fund has now collected
more than £6000.
In January, the Urswick School, a C of E secondary school
founded in 1520, was listed in the Department for Education's 100
most improved schools.