Education is indeed important but a child’s overall development is what decides the type of person they will turn into. As the education sector underwent a complete 360-degree transformation during the Corona pandemic, it had to innovate ways to educate the students and ensure the continuation of their learning and growth. Online classes and virtual learning sessions were a few ways by which schools and colleges catered learning to their students and now with the announcement of schools being re-opened in various states, there is a ray of hope among all stakeholders- Students, Teaching Faculty, and Parents to grow accustomed to this new environment and explore new avenues. Speaking on the problems faced by students and teachers during the pandemic and the way ahead, Sudha Gupta, the chairperson of ‘Mother’s Pride,’ ‘Presidium’ and ‘Mother’s Pride High School’, shares insights of her journey, scouting the realm of education.
Before we ask you about the current scenario, tell us about your journey with ‘Mother’s Pride’ and ‘Presidium’.
I come from an educational background as, during my schooling and childhood days, I used to live in the NCERT campus and had the privilege of growing among numerous readers, educated people, and professors, and my father being a retired Joint Secretary at NCERT added more to it. From my initial days, I thought of becoming a teacher but never knew life had something more than this to offer me. It was after my marriage that upon my father’s encouragement and seeing the condition of the nursery education of my elder son, I decided to start my own pre-school.
Initially, I neither had any idea of the management part nor did I have any entrepreneurial skills. I worked on the logistics and researched every nitty-gritty of things. I wanted to ensure a child-friendly environment, colorful vibes, and a place where students not only get to learn but also undergo holistic development. Dr. Vinita Kaul, the early childhood education head at the NCERT helped me a lot in setting up ‘Mother’s Pride’ and with the vision – ‘Love Blossoms Here’, ‘Mother’s Pride’ was born. 10 years later, keeping close to the immense love and success of Mother’s Child, Presidium was born.
Apart from being the Chairperson of these prestigious organizations, you also extend your services as a Parenting Expert, tell us more on this.
When I talked to students, I came to understand that different students had different problems and I believe apart from teachers playing a crucial role, it is also the parents’ duty to stay vigilant for their child’s growth and development. But unfortunately, in these busy lifestyles, it becomes tough for parents to look after their child holistically and somehow they unintentionally mishandle them. This is the sole reason, I have spent a lot of time among students, and being a parent myself, I understand the perspective and gaps from both sides. This is why I started giving my services as a ‘Parenting Expert’ and it makes my heart fill with joy when I am successfully able to positively impact the lives of children and parents through my articles in newspapers & magazines, seminars, radio shows, and TV Programmes.
Covid Pandemic brought forth the concept of Online Classes, is this the future?
No, certainly not! Online Classes cannot be a substitute for physical schooling at any cost. At best, it can be a way to cater learning to students during a situation of crisis. Physical Schooling is the essence of learning. When students interact among themselves, they learn, grow, and evolve. When they are allowed to play sports in the field and get to visit the library, they learn fast and develop a feel-good vibe. Online Classes, on the other hand, make the lives of students dull and they start to lose interest in the process of learning. Further, it creates a blockade in the development of students when they are confined to their homes.
From every perspective be it learning, interaction, or extracurricular, Physical Schooling cannot be replaced at any cost. However during pandemic, since physical schooling was not an option, online schooling saved the students’ one and a half year.
What are your views on the ‘New Education Policy’?
In my perspective, New Education Policy has brought great changes. Foremost, I liked that the policy focuses on the Early 5 Years; the foundation years of development (from Nursery to Std 3). I also admire the emphasis placed on Foundation Building and Experiential Learning. The second biggest point which I welcome was the focus on ‘Lifeskills’ because more than the knowledge, skills like confidence, courage, public speaking etc. are vital for a child’s overall development . New Education Policy also allows ‘Inter-stream choices’ to students in Class 11 which is indeed a welcomed move. The policy also has taken due care of the teaching faculty by providing training to the teachers. Overall, it was a much-needed move that has the potential to revamp the education sector.
What measures have you taken to comfort and ensure students post the Pandemic?
It is such a heartwarming experience to see students coming back to school after almost 20 months. As a responsible brand, we have ensured every possible step to bring the students at par as they have incurred huge losses during the Covid times. To bridge the gap, we are focusing on the overall development of the child be it mental, physical, or in the learning process.
Even during the pandemic, we regularly conducted all extracurricular activities, as well as all the events, were virtually held, be it ‘Model United Nation Conference’ or the ‘Investiture Ceremony, celebrating various festivals or having students prepare and participate in various assembly, events and competitions. Opportunities to express, lead and grow were always there! We even provided proper training and mentorship to our faculty members to cope up with these changes. We have also stressed Experiential Learning and our curriculum is self-designed by keeping everything in the mind. Our teachers invested themselves in the process wholeheartedly and put in lot of hardwork to ensure that learning did not stop for our students.
What are your success mantra and plans for the future?
‘Be what you want to be’ and ‘ Creating leaders of tomorrow’ is our core belief as we want students to grow and develop into responsible human beings who are capable of contributing positively to society. At present, we have 10 Presidiums, 10 Mother’s Pride High Schools, and 100 Mother’s Pride Schools. Further, in the future, we would want to multiply and grow at a pan-India level and open our schools in regions outside North India as well.
Disclaimer: This is a company press release. No HT journalist is involved in the creation of this content.