Saturday, 1 March 2014

Proud of you

Disclaimer: I don't cover the civic beat and I have not visited many corporation schools, so this is not an expert commentary on how these schools are run. I only have something good to say of the students and teachers of K C Thackeray Vidya Niketan.
I happened to visit the school last year in December when there was a literary event in the city. The writers were visiting the school as part of an outreach programme. The first thing that one of the author (she isn't from India) said to me was that the school had a 'first-class' computer lab. That's encouraging. What impressed me was the cleanliness standard of the school - extremely high. A very good sign considering that the school is not located in the poshest of locality. Even the dog, (a stray)adopted by the students/school, was clean. Yes, the dog acutally attended the story-telling session along with the students. He lay quietly in one corner - not a whimper or a bark from him. When the story failed to interest him, he quietly left the classroom.
The authors and I were told that the students were first generation English speakers and so the stories that were told to them were simple. But, the students grasped them pretty well and answered questions put to them at the end.
The teachers are young - all of them wearing Fab India type kurtas over jeans and are addressed as bhaiya and didi. The school is run by Akanksha NGO and the 'teachers' work for the body.
I also happened to visit Chaitanya English Medium School run by Camp Education Society. I love old buildings, especially stone structures, so I was mighty pleased when I parked my scooter in the school's campus. The building was stone structure and surrounding it were tall mango trees.
The classroom was cramped with two classes waiting for their drawing class. But, it was cool thanks to the breeze. Some of the students were typically restless and were brought to order by Chaitra Nerurkar, who wouldn't stand nonsense at all.
Later I learnt that Chaitra was an under-graduate student - History major - and a Teach for India volunteer.
A young person who brought a whiff of fresh air in the teaching methods. Sample this: 'I want to see students of Std V in smart positions - straight backs, no slouching.' The craft products made by students were also different!
Visit these schools!