Along with imparting education, it’s our responsibility to support underprivileged sections of the society. It will realise the motive of equity in education, says Dr SP Singh, former Member of the Legislative Council, Uttar Pradesh, and Founder Manager, Lucknow Public Schools (LPS) and Colleges, in conversation with Arpit Gupta of Elets News Network (ENN).
How are you contributing towards betterment of economically weaker and backward sections of the society?
Nowadays, there is a huge demand of private schools as the government schools are lacking in required number of teachers, facilities and infrastructure. Such a situation brings a great responsibility on private schools to make the children of economically weaker sections educated. We teach such children in our schools after regular classes are over. It is a social responsibility of every teacher, school owner and school. I have started practice of teaching poor children under which the school staff motivates students’ parents to send their wards to get education in our school. We appointed teachers of four subjects: Hindi, English, Science and Mathematics and hundreds of poor students are getting benefitted under the initiative.
In addition to that, we provide these students books and sometimes snacks etc. The initiative is not funded by the Government or any other organisation. To carry out social responsibilities is my prime concern. It’s just like worship. In winters, I distribute blankets and sweaters in far-flung villages. I distribute sweaters in Government and private schools. I organise blood donation camps and eye check-up camps. These all initiatives are taken by me because human values must be lived. The career counselling sessions conducted by me are beneficial for job seekers.
You are also promoting cleanliness related activities in nearby slums. Please describe about them in brief.
The cleanliness initiative was firstly undertaken by Mahatma Gandhi. It is another aspect of social responsibility under which every citizen of the country should be healthy and their surroundings are clean and disinfected. To encourage people take part in this initiative, I distributed soaps in slums and told them about the benefits of the cleanliness. Soap distribution is our regular practice. The activities have been conducted across hundreds of villages.
How do you support the society during any natural disaster?
Natural disasters are a great threat to nature, humanity and other creatures on earth. It’s everyone’s responsibility to help the human beings whenever an area is affected by a calamity. Either it is earthquake in Bhuj, Gujarat or Kosi River’s tragedy in Bihar or Uttarakhand’s disaster, Lucknow Public School and its staff have supported the affected people in the best way possible. I encourage my staff to donate their one day salary and ask my students to donate clothes, edibles and their pocket money. In Uttarakhand, we donated Rs 21 lakh, of which the share of school students and staff was Rs 10 lakh and my share was Rs 11 lakh. In this way, we support any natural disaster affected area in the country.
What is the vision and mission of LPS?
Our vision is to empower and make our country prosperous by providing quality education to a large number of students. Our mission is to try to impart the best quality education to students with support from principals and teachers. It is with our combined efforts that we are producing the best results in the country.
What innovations are adopted in your school and what is the role of technology in improving the educational practices?
When we started the school, only blackboard used to be the tool of the teaching. Nowadays, the technology plays a vital role in education as the entire education sector is using digital tools and devices like tablets, i-pads, smart phones etc to get the knowledge. We also encourage our teachers and students to attend conferences and summit to remain updated about the latest and the best practices of the education segment. Technology is supporting the education fraternity well as the whole world is online and anyone can access unlimited knowledge with a click of mouse.
The group is into school education as well as in higher education, how has been the sync between the two fields?
We have a staff of more than 2,000 people and are teaching more than 28,000 students. We focus on commerce and science till secondary level. We have adopted the curriculum designed and developed by National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) at pre-primary, primary, secondary and senior secondary levels.
At higher education level, we follow the norms decided by the University Grants Commission (UGC) as well as Lucknow University. The professional courses conducted in our institutions are as per the industry demand. These professional courses make the students job ready. We always try that the students pursuing degree courses in our institution get the campus placement and do not remain unemployed after completing their degree.
Recently, we conducted a national level Job Fest in which over 50 multinational companies participated and over 500 students received job offer letters. It is our efforts to provide quality education and job offers to as much candidates as possible.
In the recently announced board results, Lucknow Public School performed extremely well which ranked it among the top 10 schools of the country, what is your take on this?
For the first time, in the school’s history, the first and the second toppers of the ISC-2018 exams are from our college. It is a lifetime achievement for us. Some of our schools are affiliated to CISCE, which is spread across the world and scoring the top positions by students of LPS has established our brand’s name globally. I would like to congratulate students, teachers and their parents for achieving this landmark. Both the toppers have been studying in our school since childhood which clearly reflects that we help every student in achieving his/her dream.
You have opened a new branch of LPS in New Delhi, please elaborate on the infrastructure and other facilities it offers to students.
This is our first branch out of Uttar Pradesh. The Lucknow Public School branch is located at Asthal Mandir Marg, Sangam Vihar, New Delhi. It has been opened with the unique vision of value based quality education. The school with its world class infrastructure, best teaching practices, digital classrooms, vigilance, security, and surveillance system will help students to nurture in a friendly yet secure environment. Like New Delhi, my plan is to open schools in other metropolitan cities of India along with in United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Mauritius.