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Peter Knight and his family have set up a link between Patashala and The Stoke Poges School which has resulted in each of the schools creating a short film about themselves to send to each other. This international school link has resulted in a fundraising evening in November where Peter’s beautiful pictures will be displayed and the school orchestra and school choir will perform. For more information visit
We were coming to the end of our first academic year and teachers thought it best for the children to have a ‘cultural day’ where they could showcase their talents. So the whole school went into preparation mode and children of all ages were encouraged to put together dances and plays. The children had some help from the former students and their principal Lavanya. Continue reading
MS Foundation has grown considerably over the years. So much so that classrooms have not been providing enough space, ventilation and light for a good learning environment. Last year we built an extension to fit another classroom. This year we decided to renovate all the classes in an attempt to best utilize the space we have.
A recurring problem we have at school is consistent power cuts. When the power goes we loose our light and fan, classrooms quickly become hot and stuffy. We decided to get enough ventilation and windows to be independent of power cuts completely. Besides these we also thought it best to provide an extra toilet and a space for teachers to unwind and have lunch and tea, our own version of a teachers lounge if you will.
Students have been impressed and happy with the renovations and have been bringing their parents to school to see. It has made a big difference to their learning environment and general atmosphere. Teachers are also very happy as its made their job more pleasant. Classrooms are much brighter and cooler than before. These changes I am sure will be reflected in student behavior.
There are many reasons that a low-income school like ours, needs a uniform. Other than the fact that children love to wear them it represents status to families and teaches routine and hygiene. Considering our students live locally Patashala often feels like an extension of their home, not only for children but also for parents. Its important we try and get parents and students to cooperate in school timings and dress. Uniforms make sure children have changed from the clothes that they have slept in the night before and do not smell.
Schools in India often have more than one uniform for activities like sports, scouts/guides and school house uniforms. These often include multiple pairs of each along with ties, belts and shoes. This can be a major financial burden on families and deter them from buying them.
Since the majority of our students cannot afford different uniforms and accessories we decided to bulk buy uniforms so students could buy them at much cheaper rate. We designed a uniform that would require the least amount of accessories and would be cheap to make. This means parents can afford the uniforms and we can give further subsidies to those who need them.
We employed a local women’s self help group to stitch us about 210 pairs of uniforms. The boys uniform includes a polo shirt and matching elastic shorts and the girls have a single summer dress. We kept the same blue colour so students who have the old uniform do not need to buy a new one. The clothes are meant to fit them loosely as the weather around the year tends to be very hot.
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Patashala has limited resources owning to its remote location and economic constraints. Qualified Teachers are not willing to travel so far and even if they could the school wouldn’t be able to afford them. Our teachers are primarily high school … Continue reading