Pioneering Change: Inam Babu’s English Medium School Revolutionizes Himachal Village

This Leader Brings First Ever English Medium School to Himachal Village, Elevates Job Opportunities
Inam Babu, Doon Oxford School, Paonta, Himachal Pradesh

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Inam Babu, Doon Oxford School, Paonta, Himachal Pradesh
Varthana - English Medium School to Himachal Village

Background

Family legacies often leave an indelible mark on a child’s spirit. This sentiment rings true for Inam Babu, who has his origins in the serene village of Paonta in Himachal Pradesh. He fondly recalls, “From a young age, I watched my grandfather and father work hard in their school, devoting themselves to shaping the futures of young minds. This experience inspired me and gave me the courage to build something of my own.”

Back then, government schools were the only source of education in Paonta, with Hindi being the medium of instruction. As Inam pursued his further studies, he realized how important English education was for getting good job opportunities around the world. He thought of starting an English medium school to “elevate the future prospects of our village children”.

“I wanted to improve the lives of children living in this rural village and when I told my family about this vision, they supported the cause.”

Inam shares, “I collected the necessary means to bring this vision to life. Friends and financial institutions pitched in, helping me gather the remaining funds. I wanted to provide the young minds of Paonta the English education they deserved, bridging cultural and economic divides.” In 2012, he began building the Doon Oxford School on a slice of his ancestral land. “I wanted to open doors they didn’t even know existed,” he says with passion. Thus, Inam’s dream began to take shape, aiming to make a difference one student at a time.

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Initial struggle

In the first year, Inam had to face various challenges. With only two students enrolled that year, he had a daunting advertising task ahead. “We adopted a traditional method of outreach since digital communication was not practical in rural areas,” he recalls.

Inam further explains how he went door to door, handing out leaflets and posters. As word spread, trust in his institution grew, and more families began to send their children his way. With evident pride, he shares, “Within just a few months, our student body grew to 50, a true reflection of our relentless dedication.”

“It’s not about the quantity at the start, but the strength and the effort that matter,” he realized.

Following this success, Inam’s focus shifted to the critical task of hiring teachers. He had one non-negotiable requirement: candidates must be well-versed in English. “Education is a journey guided by those who know the path,” he mused, underlining the need of competent teachers.

Achievements

Doon Oxford School is dedicated to providing quality education to children from rural backgrounds. This dedication has led to extraordinary results. As Inam notes, “Five students from our school have clinched top ranks in the CBSE merit list over the past three years.”

He further stresses,”Our goal is to nurture potential, regardless of any background.”

Furthermore, the school extends its influence by coaching students for other significant competitions, such as JNV schools and RIMC. He highlights the school’s achievements by stating, “Four students have successfully passed these exams in the last two years, marking another important milestone in our school’s history.”

Varthana’s support during the pandemic

Inam’s school grappled with the devastating effects of the pandemic, which significantly disrupted daily operations. He recalls the dire situation, noting, “The enrollment was severely impacted, leading to a 40% decrease in student strength. This decline, in turn, posed a significant challenge in meeting financial obligations, especially staff salaries.”

He claims that during this critical time “Varthana emerged as a guiding light, extending a much-needed helping hand. With financial aid of 5 lakh rupees, Varthana played an essential role in ensuring staff salaries were met and addressing various other financial needs of the school.”

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This assistance led to a spectacular revival at the school. The student count increased from 290 to an astonishing 400, demonstrating the transforming impact of Varthana’s support.

Future Vision

The school has realized the importance of technology, especially in light of the pandemic. They are undergoing a paradigm shift in favor of a tech-savvy and resilient teaching style. By outfitting each classroom with ICT tools, the school leader aims to create a dynamic learning ecosystem that can seamlessly transition between physical and virtual modes of education.

He concludes by adding, “The school envisions a future where learning remains uninterrupted, driven by the synergy between conventional teaching methods and cutting-edge technology.”

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