E-Pao! EI - Face of face with two Principals

Face of face with two Principals
Oinam Anand *

In the result of the Class-XII examination just announced by the Council of Higher Secondary Education, Manipur, three schools have bagged the four top positions in four streams. Out of the three, two belong to privately run school and one Govt Girls’ Higher Secondary School, Imphal.

Herbert School, Imphal has got the top position in Science stream. Shri Digambar Jain Mahavir Hr. Sec School, Imphal got the first in Commerce stream and the other two streams of Arts and Vocational goes to TG Hr Sec School, Imphal.

Herbert School Imphal, having only science stream, established in 1998, shifted to its present location in 2000 has been in the race for the top and managed to top in Science stream in 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007. It had swept almost all the top twenty in 2006 (18 out of 20).

On the other hand, TG Hr Sec School which was always on the top in almost all the streams before the emergence of Private School is still in the race for the top position. In 2005 it had swept all the top ten position in Arts stream (except the 2nd).

In 2006, 5 students got their name among the top 10 in three streams and in 2007. This school got 5 toppers in Arts (1st, 2nd 3rd, 7th and 9th) and two in vocational stream (1st and 2nd).

‘Insight’ got a chance to talk to the two Principals of Herbert School and TG Hr Sec School and had a long talk about the achievement of their respective schools.

The following is an excerpt of what they said about their schools.

Dr K Nabachandra Singh, a former Additional Director of Education(U) Govt of Manipur is the present Principal of Herbert School, Imphal.

Insight:- Is the result of this year upto your expectation?
Dr N: For the first twenty, the result of this year is not so good as compared with the result of the last year inspite of getting the top position. In 2006, our school has got first to third position and 18 out of top 20 position holders. This year we got 1st and 3rd among the top 10 and got only seven out of top 20. But overall achievement is very much impressive in the sense that out of 251 in this year (3 students could not sit in the examination) 248 pass in 1st Division, 15 in 2nd Division and none in 3rd Division and percentage of pass is 97%.

Insight: Which you prefer to? Always one on the top or hundred percent pass of the students.
Dr N. (Smiling): Both, No choice between the two, I’ll try for the top as well as hundred percent pass.

Insight: About the method of teaching being imparted to your students.
Dr N: At the beginning of Class-XI session, for about a month all the students are given basic foundation course in English grammar and some fundamental knowledge of mathematics. After that subject teachers are allowed to take up the prescribed syllabus. The teachers are well qualified. We, as a whole have assessed the result and area of improvement. I am very much concerned about a particular department which is showing poor result. There should be some motivation and teaching technique has to be improved.

Insight:- Is there any improvement area in the laboratory equipment and other infrastructure?
Dr N:- There are many areas where improvements can be done. One aspect is about the improvement of the infrastructure. Teaching aids need to be improved to make up the deficiency in this particular area. There is an urgent need but I can’t afford because of the lack of financial support but we are trying our best.

Insight: What is the target of the school in the coming years, more on 2008?
Dr N: The coming year 2008 will be much better in the result than of this year as well as those of the past years. The 2007 batch, appearing in 2008 is one of the most brilliant batches. If it comes true then I shall be very happy and we are preparing for that.

Insight: One last question, did you give special coaching facility to the selected students?
Dr N:- No, I didn’t. If I select a few students and give them more care and more attention, then I am doing injustice to the others. I can’t agree with this point. The guardians will also feel that they are giving the same fee for the same treatment, for the same study, for the same course. If we have to give special classes, we call all of them but not a few of them.

* * * * *

When ‘Insight’ met S. Damayanti Devi, Principal of TG Hr Sec School, her face brims over with happiness. In one of her talk with this writer last year she told that in HSSLC Examination 2007 her students would get the top position.

Insight: Madam, you have kept your promise.
SD: Thanks for reminding, me, promises should be kept.

Insight: Is the result of this year upto your expectation?
S.D:- Frankly, speaking, it is not upto our expectation, we have thought that one or two of our students will get among the top 10 in science stream. But this is not achieved but at the same I am very happy that our school have got the top three position in Arts and to two, in vocational. At the same time, I am very much concerned about the lesser pass percentage as compared with the result of the last year. Last year it was more than 83 p c in all streams taken together but this year it is about 64 p c.

Insight: What is the factor or cause about it?
S.D:- Yes, it may be due to quality of students in a yearwise batch. At the same time our school has to go in holidays frequently which affects the calender of the school. For example we have lost about 20 working days due to deployment of security personal for election and other departmental examinations which does not fall on sunday. This has hampered the academic atmosphere of the school very much.

Insight: What are the measures which you have taken up to improve the quality of education in your school.
S.D: Yes, I am, along with my staff considering the matter very seriously. Strict screening is on the card at the time of admission specially in science stream from this year by holding written test. As it is Govt School, there are certain areas in which I have to consult the higher authority and act accordingly.

As for infrastructure and equipment, the school is well equipped compared with other Govt School. But there are also some areas which need to be improved. This school is not the property of the principal and its staff alone. It is the property of the whole state. My earnest desire and request to the authority is that they should pay frequent visit and even surprise visit to this school to inspect the system of teaching on the spot.

Almost all the lecturers are good in their respective subjects and are also sincere. A point I want to mention here is that while making arrangement of postings care should be taken to send qualified, sincere and didicated teachers keeping in mind the reputation of the school.

Insight: What is the target of the school in the coming 2008 examination?
SD:- I am very much sure that our students will be in the top as usual and in the coming 2008 HSSLC exam one or two of our students in Science Stream will be in top 10.

* Oinam Anand writes regularly for The Sangai Express. This article was webcasted on June 05th, 2007.

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