Education is about Real Life Experiences

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Our job is to provide more experiences and opportunities for students, says Kr Sumer Singh, Principal, The Daly College, Indore, in an interaction with Rozelle Laha

Kr Sumer Singh, Principal,
The Daly College, Indore

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Please brief us about the Daly College and its mission.
The Daly College was started as a Chiefs’ college. In the mid 30s, the founding member of the Indian Public Schools Conference realised that independence was not too far and the need of the hour was to educate the masses who would take up leadership. Therefore, admissions were opened to the public, and later on in the mid 60s, The Daly College began admitting girls also. We are members of different associations like the Indian Public Schools Conference, Round Square, AFS and NCC. These memberships are indicators of the the reflexive thinking of the school. Each child is born with certain talents, and we provide our children with every opportunity to discover and nurture their talent. We offer a variety of subjects, sports and a range of cultural activities and social service opportunities so that a child can find his passion.

Please tell us how you are improving the quality of education.
At Daly, our focus is on teachers. Our students can opt either for Cambridge International or CBSE curriculum at the same fees. The CBSE system is a rescribed textbook system. The Cambridge University system emphasises on challenging questions and clarity in concept. A student needs to refer to different sources to be able to attempt an answer. So while the CBSE system focuses on creating a follower, the other aims at making a good leader.

How can we improve the teaching-learning process in our country?
There are two kinds of schools in the country: non-profit schools owned by societies and trusts, and for-profit schools run by businessmen or families looking for income.People should generate money from education, but at the same time, they should also promote more educational institutions. The government should not regulate the fee structure. These days, the schools need to pay different taxes. So if a school has to pay out more and charge lesser fees from students while also accommodating students under RTE for free, the standard of education will obviously fall. We are approaching a situation where all the institutions in the country will be brought down to the same level and there will be no good schools, except the IB and CI schools as the government will not be controlling them. That way, the Indian system of education will disappear and an international educational system will emerge. In such a situation, the villages and the tribal areas will suffer the most as they cannot afford interna-tional schools.

Please comment on the changes in the education system with the advent of IT tools?
The teacher is always the main component in the education system no matter what the system of imparting education is. IT tools might provide more options of explaining and teaching. But, a good teacher can teach without any such tool.

What is your opinion on the quality of teachers’ training programmes in our country?
The teachers’ training programmes in our country are just a surface training. A teacher needs to unlearn whatever he learns during the training process once he enters the teaching world.

What is the vision of The Daly College in the coming years?
Our vision would be to provide an opportunity to students to think and experience. This opportunity can be in the form of good talk, books, teachers, travel, service or adventure. At the end of the day, all your experiences and what you make of these experiences is what we call educa- tion. Education is what you become as a result of all the experiences. Our job is to provide more and more experiences and opportunities for students.

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