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Special achievement . . . Waitaki Boys’ High School 2021 dux Harry Wilson has received New Zealand Scholarships in English and biology. PHOTO: KAYLA HODGE

Harry Wilson has broken a 10-year drought at Waitaki Boys’ High School.

The Oamaru secondary school’s 2021 dux has received New Zealand scholarships in English and biology, and is the first Waitaki Boys’ pupil in 10 years to become an NZQA scholar.

Harry (18) said he was ‘‘pretty ecstatic’’ after receiving his NCEA exam results last week.

‘‘When I opened up to see my results I was literally jumping for joy. It was a very happy moment,’’ he said.

‘‘I’m really proud of both. I’m pretty impressed with the English one, actually. There was some pretty nasty questions in there.’’

Being Waitaki Boys’ first scholarship recipient in 10 years was also a great feeling, he said.

‘‘It’s nice to show that Waitaki Boys’ can keep on producing these excellent results despite being a smaller school.’’

Three years ago, Waitaki Boys’ assistant rector (teaching and learning ) Aisea Fifita started the school’s scholarship programme, accelerating some pupils in various subjects and providing extra tutorials.

The programme allowed Harry to be pushed up a year for maths, and he finished NCEA level 3 calculus as a year 12 pupil, giving him more freedom to take four scholarship subjects — English, biology, chemistry and history — last year.

Harry credited his success to the school’s scholarship programme, studying hard at home, and the time his teachers spent helping him outside of the school day.

‘‘I couldn’t have done it without their help and support.’’

Harry, who moves to Dunedin tomorrow to study health sciences at the University of Otago, encouraged any secondary school pupils considering taking scholarship papers to talk to their teachers and give it a go.

‘‘Even the two papers which I didn’t get scholarships in, I still learned a lot from doing the papers.

‘‘I think a lot of people could probably pull it off, it just takes a bit of hard work.’’

Waitaki Boys’ rector Darryl Paterson was ‘‘thrilled’’ for Harry.

‘‘He thoroughly deserves his success, as he has put in the hard work to achieve these successes,’’ Mr Paterson said.

Harry’s biology teacher Erin Matthews and English teacher Matt Plunkett deserved ‘‘special credit’’ for their support, as did Mr Fifita for his scholarship programme, Mr Paterson said.

‘‘We are hopeful that we have a number of students ready to follow in Harry’s footsteps.’’