Technology - A Big Boon for Teaching

Mr. C.V. Badarinath is the Vice Principal of Indian Public School, Chikkaballapur, since 2009. He started his teaching profession in 1996 at Sir K.V. English School, taught English to ICSE children for 10 years, and then served as a Lecturer in a PU college for 4 years.

In this interview, Mr. Badarinath speaks of how technology is a boon for teachers, but at the same time distracting the student community.

1.What or who inspired you get into the education space?
To be frank nobody inspired me to get into the education space. To be honest, today, I’m here in this education field only by accident not intentionally. But now I’m very pleased to be in this education sector where I’m sharing my little knowledge with the children and learning a lot from them every day.
2.What differentiates your school from the other emerging institutions?
Our approach makes a big impact on the children. We focus a lot on basics or the foundation part in all subjects. For example, in languages we do focus on LSRW skills and in math it is the basic operations a child should know in the initial stages.   
3.What according to you are the major difficulties/problems, that school administrators and decision makers face? Please elaborate.
There are few major problems that we face in our school.
  1. Ours is a school established with rural backdrop and we have majority of the children coming from villages where parents are uneducated. Normally they don’t give a good feedback to their kids at home. Instead of teaching or spending some time with the child, they send their children to tuitions in the evening. This has become a craze even with the educated parents. Finally, the burden is back on the teacher, like the child comes back without doing homework or without preparing for the tests and exams. Inspite of all these short comings, parents want their child to study ICSE syllabus ONLY, they don’t want state syllabus.
  2. As the majority of the parents’ occupation is agriculture, we do face a lot of problem in fee collection, which is not paid on time.
4.What according to you is the definition of an ‘ideal school’? Kindly elaborate.
‘Ideal School’ is one which identifies the child’s interest and talent in the primary level and teaches the child as per the child’s interests. An ‘Ideal School’ should not force the child to study in the traditional format, instead it should mould the child’s strong zone. Basic knowledge should be imparted like learning languages and fundamental Math and Science.
5.What are the major changes in the education system today, from how it was a few years ago? Kindly elaborate.
There are a lot of changes in the education system today. The impact of technology is a big boon for teaching and the same has become a bane for the student community who are behind the modern electronic gadgets, neglecting the studies at home. Every school is behind the parent attractive oriented education system i.e. parents’ expectation is the first thing to be satisfied by the school not the child. If you look back few years ago, usually mothers would sit with the child to make the child study at home. Now-a-days it’s a very rare scene, where mothers do not find enough time because they are also working. In some cases, they are busy watching TV. The impact is reflecting on the child’s overall growth. These parents are very happy if the school takes all the burden like retaining the students at school till late in the evening. Present school and the education system is not teaching the child self-study, in fact we are spoon feeding them and making them read under the teachers supervision, where the dependency rate increases.  Psychologically it is unfair to hold them back after school hours just to get those ranks and to increase the market value of the school.
6.What are the methods that are implemented by your institution, to be generationally relevant?
We are giving lot of importance to communicative skills of the children, their language, vocabulary and spellings through spell bee competitions. We focus a lot on the first-hand experience that should be gained by the child. So, we normally take our children to many field trips. Keeping the environment in mind, we are encouraging the children to present a sapling or a plant on their birthdays. Distributing sweets and chocolates is completely banned.
7.Today, parents are considered as the major stakeholders in schools. What according to you are the important things to foster the relationship between the principal and parents?
I personally feel one thing, to foster the relationship, Principal or the head of the institute should make use of the parent community to teach and train the children in their expertise. Example - A parent can teach yoga, dance, meditation, drawing, art and craft, some life skills, some moral classes to the children. Available resources will be utilized here and parent will become part of the school where sharing and caring is taking place simultaneously. As the bondage becomes very strong, the involvement will be more which benefits the child and the school.
8.Do you think co-curricular activities are important for a child’s overall development? Please Elaborate.
Of course, they are very very important but nowadays these activities have overtaken the curriculum. Parents before admission, want to know whether the school has a swimming pool, horse riding, separate music classes, vocal and instrumental in particular, dance, art and craft many more. School can have only one or two activities, not many, as we have only 7 or 8 periods a day, and not getting enough time to complete the syllabus. To avail these co-curricular activities child has got weekends and also the evening time to learn in a better fashion even outside the school.