If you search for "Schools in west Delhi" on Google maps, you get a region dotted with those familiar red balloons. Being one of the newest areas to develop, schools have mushroomed here at an impressive rate.
New schools, of course, offer more up-to-date facilities than older established ones in other parts of Delhi. Take Venkateshwar International School, Sector 10, Dwarka, for instance. From a swimming pool, dance studio and cafeteria to a fleet of air-conditioned buses, the school provides its students with facilities other schools can only dream of. It has topped the ‘academic rigour’, ‘extra-curricular activities’ and ‘innovative teaching’ parameters of the 2011 Hindustan Times – C fore Top School survey.
The profile of parents in west Delhi is similar – young, working, filled with aspiration and putting a premium on value for money.
Janak Puri’s St. Francis De Sales School provides just that. Being one of the older schools in the region doesn’t prevent it from ranking first on the ‘value for money’ parameter, according to the survey. This missionary-run school also tops the ‘value system/integration’ and ‘social accountability’ categories, which is unsurprising, given that ‘concern for the welfare of others’ is the school’s stated objective.
They too make the grade
The big boys of education are also around. Delhi Public School has set the benchmark high by setting up a branch in Dwarka. It has ranked first on no less than 6 out of the 14 parameters in the survey. “The DPS brand is synonymous with excellence,” said Sunita Tanwar, principal, DPS, Dwarka.
Hansraj Model School, Punjabi Bagh, established in 1966, has constantly upgraded its curriculum and facilities to keep pace with west Delhi’s emergence. From ‘eco clubs’ to school orchestras and exchange programmes with foreign schools, education here is a whole new world of opportunity and exposure.
Beyond the top ten
There are, of course, many upcoming schools in the area that deserve attention. Mira Model School, Shree Venkateshwar International School, GD Salwan Public School etc are names that ring a familiar note among parents eager to get their children the best education they can provide.
“The infrastructure of our school is geared to support our teaching style. We also actively promote interaction between the school authorities and parents,” said Nita Arora, principal, Shree Venkateshwar International School, Sector- 18, Dwarka.
Top 10 or not, students want similar things from their schools. “We like considerate, understanding teachers, who give everyone a chance, who take everything step-by-step and don’t make us fearful of cut-offs,” said Sanchit Shorewala, a student at DPS, Dwarka, summing it up, as well as reminding us that rising cut-offs are on top of everyone’s minds.To combat this trend, schools emphasise the various options available to students today. "The effect is taking place. Our 2011 school topper went to the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad," said a proud Tanwar.