“Teaching is the best way to learn. In teaching, we become lifelong learners.”
– Rema Nandakumar, Mount Litera Zee School
The School Leaders’ Conference brought together leaders of educational institutions with the goal of empowering education entrepreneurs to build a sustainable school transformation model through networking, discussion and dialogue.
This conference is an initiative of Varthana’s School Transformation Program. This two year program is offered to affordable private schools to improve student learning outcomes.
School Leaders’ Conference Speakers
Focusing on areas in education that impact teaching and learning, the SLC opened with an introductory session on the partnership between schools and Varthana. The speakers led sessions that enabled the school leaders to explore school leadership skills, teacher recruitment and retention, and child safety in schools.
Bharath Sequeira of India School Leadership Institute led the first session on the leadership qualities of an education entrepreneur (illustrated using the Eisenhower Method and the Skill-Will Matrix). He outlined the method to improve school leadership by examining the roles and tasks carried out by the school leader on a daily basis.
Ramya Venkataraman of CENTA examined challenges faced by school leaders in recruiting and retaining teachers. This session took school leaders through the steps to recruit, retain and develop good and effective teachers.
Yashoda Hegde of the Department of Women and Child Welfare Development outlined the short and long term steps that schools can take to ensure the safety and protection of children in the school campus.
Linked to the sessions, Mangal Pandey of the Key Education Foundation spoke to the attendees about their Bengaluru-based NGO which works with children from low-income communities. The products and services offered enable children to receive a high quality of early education.
- How do we get the best out of our teachers?
- How can we support teachers in integrating values into the classroom?
- How can we engage parents?
- What are the main challenges that the Indian education system is facing today?
The four questions above guided our panel discussion in which the 5 participants examined different aspects of running a school with the goal of making sure the student receives the most out of his or her education.
- Dr. Somashekar from the Agastya International Foundation
- Yashoda Hegde from the Department of Women and Child Development
- Rema Nandakumar from Mount Litera Zee School
- Steve Hardgrave from Varthana
- Brajesh Mishra from Varthana
In motivating teachers to have a sense of ownership of their role, a school can ensure that good values are implemented in the classroom – through their teachers.
It is along those lines that greater engagement with parents is also encouraged since a bond between parents and the school facilitates the betterment of the child. Difficult though it may be, it is a challenge that can be met with frequent communication and mutual respect.
Such challenges – not just with parents but – within the Indian education system as a whole can be tackled worked on by asking oneself the question: what can I do better in their respective school entrepreneurial contexts.