Driven by Village Struggles, One Man Starts a School in Narsinghpur to Empower Future Leaders

Driven by Village Struggles, One Man Starts a School in Narsinghpur to Empower Future Leaders

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Devendra Kumar Patel, Aadarsh Gyan Jyoti Higher Secondary School, MP

Deeply concerned by the lack of resources and support in the rural schools of Narsinghpur, Devendra Kumar Patel felt inspired to bring a positive change in the education sector. He recollects, “I have closely observed the challenges faced by students and the education system in our area and felt compelled to make a difference. He passionately states, “Narsinghpur is a rural area with a scope of development in various sectors. I wanted to do something about the situation in my locality, so the idea of starting reforming from the education space”, outlining the driving force behind the school’s inception.

Overcoming Initial Challenges Together

Aadarsh Gyan Jyoti Higher Secondary School began in 2002, using both rented and owned property. The school faced many challenges in its early days. Attracting parents and students was a major hurdle. Devendra highlighted the initial struggle with marketing and financial stability. He candidly admits, “We were clueless about the marketing aspect of the school. We did not have any idea how to attract parents and students. Financial stability was also lacking.”

Devendra’s resourcefulness and determination shone through in the face of adversity. He used the support of his network to stabilize the school’s finances and build a solid foundation for its growth. He expressed his gratitude, saying, “To solve the financial problem, I had taken help from my friends and family members. I am grateful to my close friends and family who helped us in our dire time.”

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Parent-Teacher Partnership and Student Governance

Maintaining strong parent-teacher relationships is a priority for the school, with monthly meetings to keep parents informed about their children’s progress. Devendra highlights the significance, “Parents-teacher meetings happen monthly to ensure parents are aware of their kids’ results and know their improvement areas.”

The institution also fosters student governance through a student committee, where leaders are elected to ensure active participation in school affairs. Devendra even affirms, “We have a student committee where there are school leaders, games leaders, and class leaders elected to ensure student governance.”

Establishing a student committee encourages students’ leadership skills and instills a sense of responsibility and ownership in the school’s functioning.

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Driven by Village Struggles, One Man Starts a School in Narsinghpur

Varthana’s Partnership

In 2017, after a long search for financial support, Devendra found Varthana, a company specializing in school finance. Varthana’s financial help was crucial in completing infrastructure projects and increasing admissions. Devendra shares with gratitude, “Varthana has helped us a lot. We were fortunate enough to find a company solely specialized in school financing.”

The partnership with Varthana eased financial challenges and facilitated infrastructural development, showcasing the positive impact that external support can have on a school’s growth. He continues, “Varthana reached out to us and provided complete support. A relationship manager from Varthana visited Narsinghpur, our school, and explained what they offered.”

In working with Varthana, Devendra demonstrates the importance of strategic partnerships in advancing educational institutions, showing how external support can create positive change. He further emphasizes, “Varthana has helped us a lot via financial aid; we were able to finish pending infrastructure work in our school and increase admissions.”

Impacting The Rural Mindset

Devendra passionately believes in the transformative power of education in rural India. Reflecting on his efforts, he shared touching stories of meeting successful ex-students in Chennai and Maihar, which reinforced the positive outcomes of his educational work. He happily recalls, “One time, when I was traveling to Chennai and standing at the railway station, a person came to me and touched my feet. He was an ex-student from the 1st batch of our school, working in a reputed company in Chennai.”

These encounters showed the lasting impact of education, motivating Devendra to keep providing quality education to the rural youth of Narsinghpur. He emphasizes, “I have seen people’s lives improving by getting an education. When a person gets educated, it broadens their minds and improves their lives.”

Future Plans and Achievements

In the face of challenges and with the support of Varthana, Aadarsh Gyan Jyoti Higher Secondary School stands tall to Devendra’s unwavering commitment to empowering rural education in Narsinghpur.

The students who pass through its doors carry with them not just knowledge but the seeds of a brighter tomorrow, sown by the relentless dedication of its school leader, Devendra.

He envisions infrastructure development, including school buildings, classrooms, and smart classes. He plans to start a play school within Aadarsh Gyan Jyoti to engage young minds in fun activities. He expresses honor and notes, “Ten students from our school have played in nationals in track events.”

Devendra’s forward-thinking approach includes a vision for transforming the school into an advanced technical institution. He emphasizes the importance of continuous training for teachers to keep pace with changes in the education sector. “In the coming years, I want to develop my school into an advanced technical school. I also want my teachers to have training sessions yearly to keep up with gradual changes in the education sector,” he says.