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A heavy weight in the east

Don Bosco combines sporting excellence with modern teaching methods

india Updated: Nov 18, 2009 17:09 IST

Mumbai: While many school students in the city shuffle up and down narrow staircases and make do with playing ball in balconies, students of the allboys’ Don Bosco High School have the run of 60,000 square yards.

“We are thankful to the school patrons for their foresight,” said Father Bosco D’mello, the principal.

The school, run by the Society of the Salesians of Don Bosco, a Roman Catholic religious order, was first set up in Tardeo in a rented space, and shifted to Matunga after the authorities bought land from the civic authority in 1937.

The school follows the state board syllabus and is known for promoting sports. It even has a health club on its premises.

The school has kept abreast of modern teaching methods and has a LCD screen and computer in every class. It has also retained its altruistic ethos.

“We have always been known for helping underprivileged kids. It is still one of our priorities,” said Father D’mello.

Come Christmas season and students and alumni flock to the school’s ‘Care ‘n Share Christmas Panorama’ event.

“We give equal importance to extracurricular activities and studies,” said Father D’mello, adding that no one in the school had failed this past academic year, despite most students participating in both sport and cultural activities. It’s not surprising then that every ex-student, which include the likes of Akshay Kumar and Shashi Kapoor, speaks highly of his alma mater.

The school was started in 1928 in Tardeo on rented premises till the Society of the Salesians, which runs the Don Bosco High School, decided it would be prudent to buy 60,000 square yards of space in Matunga.

In 1941, the school moved into a partially completed building in Matunga.

The building was completed a year later, and came to house the secondary section.

The foundation stone for the primary section was laid on the feast of Don Bosco, on January 31, 1950. The building was then completed in June 1951.

Best Practices
The school uses an ‘Education Through Computers’ online testing technique, which allows each student to take the unit test on the computer.

The school has a special lab in which students can take these tests.

The school offers the National Institute for Open Schooling (NIOS) and pre-NIOS programmes for dropouts and those with learning disabilities.

This programme allows dyslexic students to graduate from the school with ease as they get a lot of additional help.

Basic Statistics
Fees: Rs 200 to Rs 300 a month (depending on what extra-curricular activity the student is doing)
Student-teacher ratio: 50:1
Classes: KG to Class 10 and night school
Board: SSC
Admissions procedure: Applicants must fill forms. The school gives preference to Catholics, those who have siblings in the school and those who stay close by. The school does not have an interview system.
Facilities and extra-curricular activities: The school has one hockey field, two football fields, one cricket ground and a basketball court. The school also has a trekking club.

2. Our Lady Of Perpetual Succour High School, Chembur

Fees: About Rs 400 a month,
Student-teacher ratio: 60:1
Classes: senior KG to Class 10, Board: SSC
Admissions procedure: An interview for KG, and marks and merit for Class 1 to 10
Our Lady Of Perpetual Succour High School in Chembur is a co-ed school that has primary, secondary and higher secondary sections. Founded in the early 1950s, the school had a major impact on the Chembur area, which was then considered the boondocks.

Today, the school is known for its academics and for encouraging students in the arts, dance, music and sport. It has a football field, a basketball court, computer and audiovisual rooms. The whole school has about 4,000 students.

3. Swami Vivekanand School, Chembur

Fees: Rs 1 a month for Class 1, Rs 2 a month for Class 2, etc. Students of Class 11 and 12 pay between Rs 350 and Rs 400 a year. At this level, girls get a free education as do boys in the reserved category.
Student-teacher ratio: 60:1,
Classes: senior KG to Class
12,Board: SSC
Admissions procedure: KG students have an informal interview with their parents present. For Class 1 to 10, students are admitted based on whether their siblings study in the school and whether they live in the area. Admission to Class 11 and 12 is based on merit.

Swami Vivekanand School in Chembur’s Sindhi Society is a co-education school, which has English, Marathi and Hindi mediums. The school, established in 1962, has an average of 60 students per class. The school is known for its excellence in art, music and dance. It also has a computer laboratory and a sports academy. The school offers languages like Sindhi, French and Sanskrit.


Week 1: Rankings

This week, we bring you results of our survey in the form of tables of rankings based on eight weighted parameters.
Monday, November 9:
(including Navi Mumbai):
The top 50 schools
Tuesday, November 10:
The top 10 schools south of Dadar
Wednesday, November 11:
West: The top 10 schools between Dadar (W) and Malad
Thursday, November 12:
East: The top 10 schools between Dadar (E) and Ghatkopar
Friday, November 13:
North: The top 10 schools north of Malad in the west & Ghatkopar in the east
Saturday, November 14:
The top 10 schools of Navi Mumbai

Week 2: Profiles

This week, we bring you a detailed profile of the top school in each region, including an interview with the principal, best practices and basic statistics. We also offer shorter profiles of the second- and third-ranked schools of each region.
Monday, November 16:
South Mumbai
Tuesday, November 17:
West Mumbai
Wednesday, November 18:
East Mumbai
Thursday, November 19:
North Mumbai
Friday, November 20:
Navi Mumbai

Week 3: Trends
This week, we tell you about broad developments in school education in the city.
Monday, November 23:
The rise of international schools
Tuesday, November 24:
New trends in teaching
Wednesday, November 25:
Parent involvement in schools
Thursday, November 26:
Schools with a difference
Friday, November 27:
Navi Mumbai, an emerging education hub