After much anticipation, the Excellence in School Education Conclave: Leveraging Joy, Imagination and Innovation began on Saturday, 11 November 2011
Taking the stage for the inauguration of the event were Maya Menon, Director of The Teacher Foundation, Syed Sultan Ahmed, Director of EduExcellence, Prof. Harish Chaudry, IIT Delhi and Grace Pinto, Managing Director the Ryan International Schools.
Following the lighting of the lamp, a few common themes were touched upon by the speakers in their opening remarks. In particular, many spoke about the value of creating and fostering schools where the students themselves are successful and engaged participants, the sense of purpose and vision many teachers feel towards their work with students. However, at the same time, the speakers touched upon the room for growth and upcoming challenges in the way forward. Syed Sultan Ahmed asked the gathering “How can teachers educated in yesterday's schools educate students in today's work for an unknown future of tomorrow?” As the school system evolves how will the system negotiate its reach, inclusiveness and quality. Closing the welcoming remarks, Maya Menon spoke about the need to address the system's shortcomings, not from a cosmetic level, but from a foundational level that creates long-lasting change in the way children are taught. “We need to stop tinkering with superficial remedies, and get back to basics”
As the Conclave continues over the next three days, with delegates, speakers and guests from across the country, the question of infusing schools with joy imagination and innovation will be addressed. Among the discussions, debates and presentations, there may be answers and solutions to some of these lingering challenges.