Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

Love for children

Published: May 15, 2019 12:50:17 AM IST
Updated: May 15, 2019 03:47:49 PM IST

Love for children
Dr Shahnaz Ahmed
Chairperson, Springdale High School
Years of experience: Over 35 years

A keen observer by nature, Dr. Shahnaz Ahmed has put her heart and soul to spread the wings of quality education over a time span of 35 years through a series of continuous experiments—by regularly attending seminars, conferences, training sessions, both nationally and internationally, encouraging her staff members to get trained, and most importantly, through a system of mutual trust, faith, harmony, love, compassion and goodwill.

She has watched the growth and development of the institution right from its fledging stage. She is open to picking up something productive and interesting from every single part of the globe she has visited, and the knowledge, wisdom, expertise and foresight that she has gained from her frequent travels have always contributed to the progress and expansion of Springdale as a school. She has always focused on imparting childcentric education, with the motto to develop a child’s mind, body and soul. She is involved in social activities and was the former National President of Country Women Association of India (CWAI) for 3 consecutive terms of 10 years each. She has worked for the empowerment of women, values of equality and dignity for all, over the past years. She has also worked in many education programs for children and women

Charting The Path
She says, “Love for children and the proper technique of teaching them has always been my priority. Maria Montessori method of teaching has always encouraged me to start something for the betterment of the society and the children. Bringing new teaching methods in the society and helping both students and parents adapt to the innovative learning has been a struggle. Transforming my traditional classroom into a blended-learning environment that provides a more personalized learning experience for each of my students has been the biggest struggle I had to face in my life. Ms Ahmed worked with sheer determination to ensure quality education is provided.

She says, “Starting an institute in a place where people follow the same normal academics was itself a challenge. I have moved from a normal day school to an innovative school. I have encouraged my teachers to get trained and help them understand the capabilities and potential of every student and helping them to learn according to their capabilities. Mindsets of people, including teachers, students and parents, challenges of multi curriculum teaching, sustaining long hours of work for all the stakeholders, giving it corporate quality standards, and corporate quality assessment procedures for teachers—all this was an uphill task. Through ups and downs, highs and lows, with immense passion and nurturing, our institution has grown into this beautiful ‘Tree of Life’. But with strong will, determination and leadership, Springdale High School stands proudto be one of the Best CBSE Schools in Assam.

Identifying opportunity
‘Education is not a preparation of life- Education itself is life’. Today’s education is making students to become robots. Students are asking- ‘How can I be heard, what should I study to get a job’. Students need to be heard, loved and understood. Seeing the students struggling in their academics and not being understood, she realised that she should start a school that will give more emphasis to child-centric education. She stepped out of her comfort zone and recreated the classrooms to encourage every child to enjoy learning. The happier the child is, the more productive the classroom is and the more productive the classroom is the more productive the school is.

Life Lessons
I lay strong emphasis on imparting strong moral values and social responsibility in my pupils. As a person I believe that education will make each one self-reliant, humanistic, compassionate, and above all a fine human being. Widely travelled in the field of education, I have attended the Ommersion into Finnish K-12 Education organised by Jyvaskyla, Finland in 2016; have visited schools under John Hopkins University, New York for Brain Targeted Education under Edu Excellence with a special delegation to USA.

I have also attended the Education Queensland International in the Principal’s Leadership Building Professional Development Program with the Department of Education and Training Queensland, Australia. I have attended the International Education Professional Development Seminar at the State University of New York at Suny Old Westbury in 2016. I have been a Part of the ‘Journey Back to School’, a 3 days’ professional development program and has been to The Doon School, Welham Boys’ School and Welham Girls’ School, with Edu Excellence, 2016. I have attended many seminars and conferences held on Education in different countries.”

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