Model Reeva Steenkamp was popular and respected by all, the headmaster at her old school Greg Stokell, said on Thursday.
"She was a vibrant, friendly, diligent, and motivated student who was popular with and respected by staff and peers alike," he said.
"The St Dominic's Priory school community in Port Elizabeth is both shocked and saddened by Reeva Steenkamp's sudden and tragic death."
Steenkamp, 30, was shot dead at her paralympian boyfriend Oscar Pistorius's home in Pretoria on Wednesday night.
Pistorius was in police custody and would appear in court later in the day.
Steenkamp completed both her primary and high school education at the Port Elizabeth school, matriculating in 2001.
Stokell said the model achieved recognition for her good academic results, her participation in hockey and swimming, and in her capacity as a house captain.
She graduated with a law degree at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.
"From young, Reeva had the full support of her parents who encouraged her to maximise her strengths and abilities to achieve her dreams. She set high goals for herself in everything she did and she consistently converted opportunities into success."
The school conveyed condolences to Steenkamp's family.
"They are devastated by the loss of their daughter, but do not have any further comment."
The school would not release their contact details in keeping with their right to privacy.
On her Facebook profile page, Steenkamp described herself as a "SA Model, FHM Cover Girl, Tropika Island of Treasure Celeb Contestant, Law Graduate, [and] Ambassador".
She used her Instagram site, an online space for photo-sharing, for pictures of herself, family and friends, jewellery, and inspiring quotes.
Her last entry four days ago showed a cartoon female face being hit by a hand, and was accompanied by: "I woke up in a happy safe home this morning. Not everyone did. Speak out against the rape of individuals in SA. RIP Anene Booysen."
A post on the same site two weeks ago shared a poster detailing the joys of finding love.
The poster read: "It's beautiful when you find someone that is in love with your mind. Someone that wants to undress your conscience and make love to your thoughts. Someone that wants to watch you slowly take down all the walls you've built up around your mind and let them inside." -Sapa