Masterclass With Fearless Educator

Masterclass With Fearless Educator

Future School Leaders
Sep 30, 2020 57 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 30 | J K Sinha, IPS (Retd.) - Shoshit Seva Sangh, Bihar

Shri Jyotinivas Kumar Sinha was born on 16th of July, 1945. He did his schooling from St. Xavier’s School, Patna. Thereafter, he joined St. Stephen’s College, Delhi, in 1961 and graduated with History (Honours) in 1964. He did Masters in History from the Delhi University in 1966 and joined the Indian Police Service in 1967. He was allotted the Bihar Cadre but served in his home state for a very short period and went on deputation to the Cabinet Secretariat, Government of India in 1971. During his service with the Cabinet Secretariat he served in India and abroad with great distinction. He was awarded the ‘Indian Police Medal’ for meritorious service in 1987 and the ‘Sarvottam Seva Suraksha Patra’ for distinguished service in 2000. He retired as Special Secretary in 2005. On retirement he decided to return to his home state and settled in Patna with the sole objective of working for the welfare of the ‘Musahar’ community of Bihar, perhaps, the most downtrodden and poverty stricken community in India. He established ‘Shoshit Seva Sangh’ which runs a fully free English medium residential school in Patna to provide high quality education to the children of the musahar community. The school run by Shoshit Seva Sangh provides not only free education, boarding & lodging but also clothes including uniforms, text-books and stationery, medical-care, toiletries, bedding and bed linen, personal utensils and all other necessities. Musahar children as young as 6-7 years drawn from remote villages of various districts of Bihar are admitted in the Pre-School class and fully supported till they complete higher secondary. Shri Sinha began this with supporting the education of 4-5 musahar children in 2006. In less than a decade he was able to acquire land and build a residential school which can accommodate upto 1000 musahar children. The school building has been constructed as per the guidelines mandated by the Central Board of Secondary Education. It has a highly experienced and qualified teaching faculty. It also has sporting facilities which a school can be proud of. Shoshit Seva Sangh looks after musahar children and provide quality education literally from cradle to adulthood. This indeed is an unique achievement. The school is affiliated to the CBSE upto higher secondary level. Presently there are over 506 musahar children and the school has started admitting 100 children in the Pre-School class every year. The school built in over 2 acres of land as stipulated by CBSE has all the facilities mandated by it. This institution was built by Shri Sinha with funds raised from individuals and corporates under their CSR programme with single minded devotion. The facilities in the school would compare with quality schools in India. Shri Sinha was given ‘India Positive Award’ sponsored by CNN-IBN in 2012 and figured in the ‘Amazing Indians’ serial telecast by Times Now Channel. He was adjudged as one of the ‘Best Educators’ of India by the jury constituted by Times Now in 2015. He was honoured for his valuable contribution in the field of education and literacy as a ‘Literacy Hero’ in 2013 by Rotary International at the South Asia Literacy Summit. Shri Sinha was awarded the ‘Padma Shri’ by the President of India on the occasion of the Republic Day, 2019, for this outstanding social service. Some photographs of the life and activities at the school are attached. Shoshit Seva Sangh has a very elaborate website and the address is --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 29, 2020 53 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 29 | Indraa Raju - Abheek: Centre for Experiential Learning

Founder : Abheek ; Centre for Experiential Learning From humble beginnings, to exploration with a desire to excel!! I am Indraa Raju, from Bengaluru, South India. A journey of a young girl to becoming an entrepreneur in the field of education, is my path of learning. An avid follower of Swami Vivekananda , my philosophies to life grounded me to connect with nature , Indian traditions and learnings. My journey with my elder daughter (Trupthi) showed me great disparity in the education system which helped me to explore opportunities for my experiences to float newer learning and unlearning past systems. In my search towards holistic education, I experienced various avenues, met great educators and personalities who guided me to become an entrepreneur. The early part of my journey as a trainer and facilitator took me to the challenge of protecting and nurturing the goodness and innocence in children, making headway to the growing demands of the contemporary world. My dream found its ground when I began my start up a of play school named “Nurture”, for my son (second child ) ,creating a place for joy and learning . My son became the inspiration in bringing about a change to the outlook towards the education system and I grew as a mature human , understanding the philosophies and building deeper connect to the human kind . My deep explorations and engagements with alternative forms of schooling have now manifested as Abheek - an ever-evolving space that invites students, educators and parents to participate in the act of living, learning and sharing. Abheek enters tenth year of a joyful space of learning this year. My love for learning, theatrical presentations, accepting and developing changes, engagement with individuals , all brought out to create a community with a deep concern for growth. My enthusiasm never stops to identify varied discoveries, accepting newer theories and meeting prolific leaders in this venture. My dream is to build this space , expand to all areas and create a role model ,bringing more children to learn joyfully. Being the enthusiastic Captain of Abheek , I wish to create a space not just for students, but parents and educators and find a strong ground to build a space of human kind to explore and live in harmony. --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 28, 2020 32 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 28 | Liza Sreedharan - Keshar Academy of Learning (KAL), Goa

Having completed my training in Waldorf education at Emerson College, Forest Road, East Sussex, U.K in 1986, I returned to India and worked in a mainstream school for three years. As a Waldorf educator I found a need to make changes in the method and delivery of education. I wished to implement an alternative way of education based on the teachings of the philosopher Rudolf Steiner and the philosophy of Waldorf education. Keshar Academy of Learning was born in 1992. It began with a playgroup which grew organically into a kindergarten and then into class 1 and subsequently all the way up to class 12, adding a class every year. In 2005 we became a Cambridge accredited school enabling us to offer the IGCSE, and the AS/A Levels Cambridge examinations. --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 26, 2020 47 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 26 | Dr. Achyuta Samanta, Founder - KIIT and KISS, Odisha

Achyuta Samanta, after obtaining Master’s Degree in Chemistry in 1987 from Utkal University, started his career at 22 years of age. He has 30 years of teaching experience to his credit so far. Prof. Samanta went on to serve KIIT as its first Chancellor and has had the distinction of being the youngest Chancellor of any Indian University. He served University Grants Commission (UGC) as Member for two consecutive terms (2008-11 & 2011-2014) and was a Member of the Executive Committee of All Indian Council for Technical Education (AICTE). He was also a member of several other Government of India bodies like, NCTE, ISTE, ISCA, COIR BOARD, CAPART and many more. He has been a Member of the Academic Council of Central University, Silchar, Assam and the Central University, Odisha. He was the first Indian to be Member of both UGC and AICTE simultaneously and the first Odia to become Member of UGC and many other statutory bodies. Currently he is the President of World Congress of Poets 2019. He has delivered nearly 100 motivational speeches, including convocation addresses and foundation day lectures, in different institutions and organizations across the country and the globe. Prof. Samanta has been conferred with 33 Honoris Causa Doctorate awards from different Universities across the globe. He has also been decorated with prestigious Civilian Awards from many countries including, Gusi Peace Prize International, the highest Civilian Award from Bahrain besides over 50 national and international and over 200 State honors and accolades. He is the Founder of Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT ) and Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), Bhubaneswar – the fully free and fully residential tribal institute. Starting modestly with an initial seed capital of Rs 5000/-, KIIT has grown into one of the most promising Universities imparting professional education in the Country with global acclaim having 27,000 students from across the country and abroad. KIIT also runs a 2000 bedded multispeciality hospital and an attached Medical College. KISS has become the largest Residential Tribal Institute in the World and is home for 50,000 tribal children (30,000 pursuing education and 20,000 passed out). Both KIIT and KISS found a place in the Limca Book of Records as well as Guinness World Records in many counts. Prof. Achyuta Samanta, who had lost his father at the age of four, before he could know the significance of the world, was pushed into the mire of abject poverty. Today, he is a legend, an iconic educationist, an emblem of service to humanity, a beacon of light for social transformation, and a redeemer of the fallen, the oppressed and the marginalized. With huge contributions in the field of education, health, art, culture, literature, rural development, social service and spiritualism his journey in life is not only awe-inspiring but soul-awakening for millions of poverty-stricken youths all over the globe. He has converted the remote village ‘Kalarabank’, Cuttack into a Smart Village and the entire Manpur Panchayat into a model Panchayat (cluster of villages). He has already started working to establish 12 branches of KISS in different districts, besides establishing KISS-Delhi for the underprivileged sections of the society. Besides providing around 10,000 direct employment in KIIT and KISS, he has created over 1,00,000 indirect employment and more than 100 successful entrepreneurs across the country. His hobby is to give happiness and a smiling face to the millions of poor. Prof. Samanta has been working relentlessly for Zero Poverty, Zero Hunger and Zero Illiteracy. --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 25, 2020 39 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 25 | K. Prabhakaran - The Lawrence School, Lovedale, Ooty

Mr. Prabhakaran has been in the education sector for 34 years. His rich experience in National (CBSE and ICSE) and International Curriculum (IB and IGCSE) has impacted not just the students but teachers too. With his diverse knowledge in various academics feats, he has served as the Assistant Headmaster and Dean of Academics of Doon School, Dehradun. He actively enjoys curriculum development, pastoral care and counselling for students. Apart from teaching and school administration, Mr. Prabhakaran has been deeply involved in social and community services, including Round Square programmes, for helping underprivileged students. He has led the students and teachers of the in setting up and re-building damaged schools in the earthquake and flash-flood affected areas of Uttarkashi, Chamoli, Rudra Prayag, areas of Himalayas (Uttarkahnd) and Wayaad, Gudalur and other parts of Western ghats (Kerala and Tamilnadu ). Mr. Prabhakaran is a post graduate in Geography with a degree in education. He was the university rank holder during graduation and a recipient of the National Merit Scholarship for post-graduation. He started his career as a Lecturer, and later worked as the resource person for Kerala State Institute of Education. He believes in motivating and assisting students to reach their full academic potentials. For Mr. Prabhakaran, values such as humility, self-discipline, spirit of service are important in shaping the character of the individual and the nation. Mr. Prabhakaran is an avid trekker and has organized student expeditions through the length and breadth of the Himalayas. Mr. Prabhakaran is the 20th Headmaster of The Lawrence School, Lovedale and is now impacting and changing students to be global leaders. --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 24, 2020 55 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 24 | Dr Craig Allen Cook - Woodstock School, Mussoorie

Craig has family connections with Asia which stretch back over five generations. His great grandmother was involved with the famous Chefoo School in northern China. Craig earned his BA degree in Intercultural Studies at Biola University, California, in 1984. He completed his M.Div. in Theology from the same university in 1986. He has a Ph.D. in Sociology from Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. His doctoral dissertation focused on the introduction of women’s basketball to the Philippines by American educators, entitled The Social Construction of Bodies through Basketball during the American Occupation: 1906-1922, and was awarded the John F. Doherty, S.J. Award for Social Justice. Craig’s research interests lie at the intersection of sociology of the body, gender, and sport. He currently serves as President of the International Sociological Association’s Research Committee on Sociology of the Body. He started his teaching career as a High School Teacher in La Habra, California. From 1988-1992 he worked in community development in a Muslim majority area of the southern Philippines, where he learned both Tagalog and the local language, Maguindanao. From 1992 until 2004 he worked at Faith Academy, Manila, Philippines, first teaching Humanities in the High School, then as High School Principal and, for five years, as Superintendent of the entire school, guiding a team of 130 faculty staff and 700 students in K-12, one third of whom were boarding students. From 2004 until 2012 he was Chair of the Social Sciences and Humanities Departments at Crown College, St. Bonifacius, Minnesota. He returned to Asia 2012-2016 to work as Deputy Dean and High School Principal at UPH University and High School, a flagship Christian institution in Jakarta, Indonesia with some 15,000 students at High School and University. From 2016-June 2019, Dr Cook was Dean of the School of Education at Simpson University, Redding, California, where he successfully led the school through complex accreditation procedures. Dr Cook is married to Jamie Williams, J.D. They met in Indonesia, where she was teaching International Law in the Faculty of Law at Universitas Pelita Harapan. She earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Literature and Letters from the University of Oklahoma and her Juris Doctorate from Vermont Law School. A licensed attorney in the states of New York and Texas, she has practiced family, criminal, and commercial law. Prior to joining Woodstock, Jamie was a professor in the History and Political Science Department at Simpson University in Redding, California, where she taught Political Science and Criminology. She was also an adjunct professor teaching Restorative Justice and International Law at Le Tourneau University in Longview, Texas. In addition, she served as Program Coordinator for Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), a nonprofit organization that advocates for the best interests of abused and neglected children in the foster care system. In Craig’s own words: “I have been an athlete and participant in vigorous physical exercise for the whole of my adult life, being a regular basketball and tennis player and a tennis coach for many years. We live at present in a mountainous area of Northern California, where we enjoy hiking on the many beautiful trails… The heart of Christian leadership is being a servant to others, as evidenced by Jesus’ washing the disciples’ feet and commanding us to do the same.” --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 23, 2020 46 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 23 | Peter John Bird - The International Village School Chennai

Mr Peter Bird originates from a small rural village in South Cambridgeshire, UK. His humble beginnings started in Corporation housing and his father was known locally as the Professor because he was the only one they knew that had attended Technical College in Cambridge. Until the age of 16 he attended school within his village and had never traveled outside of the UK. Mr Bird left school with minimum qualification and was in a real sense a school failure. Why did a modern day successful school Superintendent fail school? Well in Mr Bird’s opinion he did not fail school, the education system failed him. The memory game of traditional education kills children's creativity and passion to learn which is why he hated school. Mr Bird then started on a long road to prove his intelligence despite his school results resulting in a varied career in many fields which he will share with you. The connecting factor in all his career successes has been his sheer determination to not accept the current system or the situation he has encountered. Instead he has forged on to achieve and now pioneers to bring about change in education which he remains passionate about. During his career in educational leadership, Mr Bird has been the founding Principal in several countries including England, Qatar and currently The International Village School,Channi, India. IVS opened its doors in August 2018 and by JUne 2020 achieved IB World School statues in under two years, and during a global pandemic. Mr Bird’s message is simple, education IS the gateway to personal growth and career success, BUT only if the education system fits the pupils and not forces the pupils to fit the education system. --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 22, 2020 1 hr 2 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 22 | Allan Kjaer Andersen - Chaman Bhartiya School, Bengaluru

Originally from Denmark, Allan has over four decades of experience as an educator; and over three decades of experience in senior administrative positions in Denmark. He is armed with an M.A. in Danish language, literature and history as well as a Master’s in Public Administration. He has taught Danish language and literature as well as communication and IT. Allan is a visionary leader in the field of education and believes that Preparing students to succeed in a rapidly changing 21st-century environment begins in schools. He is the Founder and Principal of the globally recognised Orestad Gymnasium School in Copenhagen, Denmark, which is recognised amongst the 15 most innovative schools globally. The school was the first globally to go 100% digital and has been visited by eminent personalities like Prince Harry. The school is renowned for its’ innovative learning environment with open spaces instead of traditional classrooms, its strong emphasis on media skills, fully digitalised teaching material and innovative teaching practices. According to him non- traditional teaching environments form the backbone of the teaching-learning process. The digital environment also encourages a more personalised style of teaching. He has been an active participant in public debate in Denmark on topics related to education and challenges faced by youth. He has also presented at international seminars and conferences on 21st-century learning spaces and learning, technology in teaching and the “why of education” in the 21st century. He is one of the founders of the Global Schools Alliance, which is a select gathering of innovative schools. Allan is also a member of the Academy of the Finnish organization HundrEd, which collects, shares and rewards innovative school projects from all over the world. Allan is one of the founding members of the Chaman Bhartiya School . The school will prepare students for living and leading in India in the 21st century. To realise this vision Allan is one of the key contributors towards the development of the unique “We Lead” curriculum which incorporates development of academic competencies along with 21st century competencies as well as leadership skills. The school will also incorporate best practices on open learning spaces, innovative teaching practices as well as incorporate technology to personalise learning. “What’s important is for the teacher to talk less and let the students work more. The teacher has to organise processes that encourage that to happen. The architecture of the school forces the teacher to do just that.” says Allan. --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 21, 2020 50 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 21 | Poornima Arun - Marudam Farm School, Tamil Nadu

Qualification: M. Sc., B. Ed. (special education), Diploma in counselling Work experience: 1. Head teacher, at Marudam farm school since June, 2009 2. Science, Maths and language teacher at primary, middle and secondary levels at Olcott memorial High school from 1996 – 2009 3. Worked with street children in Dharavi, Mumbai, 1993 -1996 Languages: Tamizh, English, Hindi, Malayalam (only speaking) Interests: Dance, Music, Theatre, Crafts, all traditional art and craft forms, Environment I was part of an Action research programmed conducted by the British council, called the – Teaching English to the disadvantaged [TED]. This was a very useful and educative programme for all of us. Employment generation Working in close contact with Hemant from Centre of scientific research in Auroville, we created a model of employment generation with a group of my ex- students, replacing kerosene lamps with solar lanterns in the shops on the Elliot’s beach. This was a very simple but impactful move as it had great beneficial health impact for the shop keepers. With kerosene lamps they were inhaling a lot of sooty smoke. It was of course very beneficial for the environment. Hemant went on to win a Green Oscar based on this work. Child safety I began to work towards child safety, preventing child sexual abuse, working in close connection with Lois Engelbrect an International expert on the issue. We have been in close contact for nearly two decades and work in close collaboration. I regularly hold child safety workshops for teachers and students of various schools. Marudam farm school - from 2009 As a family, we moved to Thiruvannamalai, in 2009. My partner and I along with a British, Israeli couple and a few friends formed a new trust, called “The forest way”. The forest way is involved in afforesting the sacred Arunachala hill, running an Organic farm and the Marudam farm school. More about the forest way is available on – As a founder member and Head teacher of the Marudam farm school, which started, in 2009, with 20 children and has around 120 children now, I have been involved in all aspects of running the school, from curriculum development, teacher training, teaching at all levels, creation of education resources, time tabling, administration, Education department interfaces etc. I regularly conduct workshops for various schools and work closely with Azim Premji foundation in Pondicherry. I have been conducting the annual craft week in Marudam farm school for 8 years now, in which traditional crafts people and artisans from all over come and teach children from various schools these skills. It is one of the most popular activities in Marudam. More about Marudam farm school at – --- Send in a voice message:
Sep 20, 2020 49 min

Soulful स्कूल | Session 20 | Shibani Ghosh - Organization For Awareness of Integrated Social Security (OASiS), Bhopal

"A social entrepreneur from heart, Shibani is the Co founder of ‘Parvarish - The Museum School’, an innovative education Project of OASiS. As a Founding Member of OASiS - A Social Innovations Lab, Shibani has been at the core of all education innovations in the organisation. After completing her Masters in English Literature, and Bachelor in Education, she thought of doing something different, to educate masses, not classes. She started a Museum based School to teach underprivileged children through Museum Exhibits in the year 2005. She collaborated with 5 museums of her city and began the journey. Her journey began with 40 children 15 years back, and today there are approx 100 children from 10 slums of Bhopal attending her school regularly. More than 4500 children have benefitted from this initiative of her. Some of them are now pursuing Engineering, Science, Commerce, Arts, Pharmacy and Fashion Designing undergraduate courses, some are pursuing Performing Arts, some have started their own Businesses, and some have joined back as Teachers. She has received many awards, out of which the project ‘The Museum School’ won the UNESCO Asia-Pacific EDUCATION INNOVATION AWARD 2016 in Beijing, and has been listed under '100 inspiring Global Innovations in Education’ by HundrEd Finland. --- Send in a voice message: