An established name, a long list of eminent alumni, and decades of experience- that’s what makes schools in central Delhi a class apart. Among the ‘first schools’ of the capital, they have played an important part in boosting the educational scenario in the city.
Yet it is the youngest of these schools which has topped the overall charts in the 2013 HT-C fore Top Schools Survey for central Delhi for a second time in a row. Established in 1996, Sanskriti school is ahead of the others with the highest scores on ‘individual attention to students’, ‘innovative teaching’, among other parameters.
Abha Sahgal, principal, Sanskriti school, is humble about her school’s achievements. “We have benefitted from the experience of our older counterparts and have simultaneously imbibed what is new around us”.
Modern School, Barakhamba Road, has retained its second position this year, topping the categories such as ‘extra-curricular activities’, ‘sports’, ‘parental participation’ and ‘infrastructure and facilities’. The school, however, has scored low in the ‘social accountability’ category.
One of Delhi’s most famous school, Sardar Patel Vidyalaya, stands third while Delhi Public School, Mathura Road, the mother school of the DPS brand, bags the fourth spot with good scores in ‘sports’, ‘infrastructure and facilities’ and ‘social accountability’.
A look at the top ten schools
Going by the law
It has been four years since the Right to Education law (RTE) came into being, making education in the city’s best school accessible to the students from Economically Weaker Sections (EWS). Opinions on the effectiveness of the law are still divided.
“It is a step towards ensuring education for every child. Also, it leads to the harmonious blend of students from different backgrounds,” said Harsha Gupta, whose two sons study in Modern School. “To some extent, it mounts burden on the parents of other children, but government also reimburses `1199 to schools on account of every EWS child per month.”
But are schools complying? “They do it because the law mandates it,” says a skeptical Gupta.
Schools in the region, however, seem to be not only following the mandate but actually embracing it. DPS is one of them. “We have a special period for EWS children in the morning in which teachers take their queries and clear doubts,” said Aruna Puri, headmistress, Junior wing, DPS.
“We try to make the pedagogy more structured and relevant, and not dilute it. We ensure that the students get benefit out of it, both emotionally and academically,” said Sahgal.
Apart from reserving 25% seats, Sanskriti has also undertaken the task of educating the municipality school-going children of Sanjay Basti, a nearby slum. Around hundred children come to the school every day after school-hours and are taught personal skills, etiquette, apart from regular subjects. “The children take learning back to their homes, and try to keep their surroundings clean,” she added.
Video: Abha Sahgal, principal of Sanskriti School speaks to HT