Hey, Iam planning to return to Chennai from USA by end of 2020, it will be helpful if i get some information on this. I have a 7 year old son (2nd grade now) and 4 year old daughter(pre k currently). Planning to stay at Nanmangalam (in between madipakkam and medavakkam) and later may move towards mambakkam(near vandalur).My queries are,
1. Which syllabus is good(feasible for national examinations)
2. when is the right time to come so that the admission process will be smooth.
3. School suggestions
4. Any other suggestions or advise to follow is highly appreciated. Thanks
I replied to one of your questions about schools in another thread. Your question on syllabus caught my eye and it is good that you are analysing this aspect.
Syllabus - CBSE is undoubtedly the leading Indian syllabus but this board is going through lot of change this year. Please Google and read about National Education Policy - NEP 2020 to know what is happening. In my opinion there are currently three major types of curriculum / syllabus / approach to teaching -
1. Inquiry based curriculum - International Baccalaureate (IB - from pre KG to grade 12), Waldorf (only KG's,) Reggio Emilia (only KG's), Montessori (upto middle school) all fall into this bracket, this system is definitely very progressive and inline with the future. This system, particularly IB starts with the premise that there is no single solution to any problem and really allows children the freedom to explore and identify many different possible answers. Many premium / Ivy League universities world wide currently give preference to students with an IB high school diploma. IB is your best bet if you are aiming at real learning for your child and have the ability to send your child to Ivy League universities in India & abroad.
2.Knowledge based but blending some skill and Inquiry aspects- CBSE & UK Cambridge (also known as IGCSE) fall into this bracket, CBSE is definitely progressing but at a slow pace towards Inquiry method. It is interesting to note that CBSE itself is evolved from the UK system and the basics of CBSE seem to be rooted in the British way in the early years after our countries Independence. As such CBSE has started integrating application / Inquiry based questions into their question papers over the last 3-4 years, I have seen the transition reflected in the question papers that my older child has attended. CBSE is slowly transitioning towards the IB methodology, if you read NEP 2020 you will understand. The minus point is that with political interference, CBSE's pace of change is drastically slowed down. CBSE is your best bet if you are aiming at India's national exams for your Childs UG.
3. Only knowledge based system / also known as rote learning - TN State board - samacheer kalvi, many regional state boards are still following this system. Also many schools such as Narayana, Chaitanya etc., still follow this method of teaching even though they may actually be offering CBSE syllabus. Unfortunately this system feels out of touch with todays changing world and believes in only testing students knowledge expecting mugged up answers. I will not opt for this system even if offered free.
The best time for admission in India in CBSE schools is between January middle to March middle. You will have to put in the effort and do your homework if you want a good CBSE school.
I have answered your question on school suggestions in the other thread.
Good luck with your search.
Thank you so much papabear!! I really appreciate your effort. I will do consider all your options. Iam little worried because of the transition from one country to another and there is huge difference in syllabus. To be very honest iam looking for school that will not break my elder ones confidence(here he is very bright student). Meanwhile do you know any info about Tatva in Medavakkam and its main location at polachery. One of my friend suggested Tatva but i dont have any idea.
hi Papabear , small question. you didnt cover about ICSE here. most of the
popular progressive schools like theschool or abacus are stil
with ICSE board any idea why they are into ICSE.
By the way your response helps us a lot to
down our search for progressive schools
Great question and happy to offer my perspective, schools like Abacus & The School can be categorized as an alternative learning school in my opinion.
These are not part of mainstream schools but are meant for those parents who are seeking specified paths of learning such as Montesorri (in the case of Abacus till 6th) (OR) Jittu Krisnamurthi's learning philosophy of blended age classrooms (in the case of The School), wherein children of two to three different age groups sit together and learn, they address teachers as akka & anna, students are at liberty to walk in & out of the classrooms and sit in different classrooms etc.
You really should look at these options only if you have a deep understanding of what you are seeking by way of education for your child and are willing to really give your child an opportunity to do whatever he / she wants after 12th. For example I have met some of the alumni from The school who have gone on to become an ace industrial photographer, theatre artist etc., which is a very unconventional choice and may not be understood by many in the mainstream, such as friends & relatives who ask the child...what do you want to do after you grow up? Imagine if the child answers and says I want to become a Jockey (OR) a poet, are you as a parent willing to be supportive, do you have the financial resources to make it happen for your child are questions that you have to find answers too.
The method of switching from Montesorri to ICSE in 6th std., is extremely taxing for children. ICSE is a very knowledge heavy Indian board and is usually a good fit for those students who want extreme depth of knowledge. For example ICSE Chemistry in 9th std., covers parts of CBSE 11th Std., Chemistry. Also many schools opt for ICSE as an alternative to CBSE because requirements for affiliation are much lower compared to CBSE.
Overall amongst Indian boards CBSE Seems to be the most balanced and amongst International boards IB seems to be the most progressive.
Tatva is a relatively new school and offers UK Cambridge but with all Indian teachers. When I visited they were talking about preparing children for competitive exams but could not answer me when I asked them about how a foreign board can prepare students for Indian competitive exams. Overall I came away with the impression that their offering was not clear, also when I asked them about the qualification of their teachers they said something about a certificate course offered by some local institute. Anybody can enroll and get this certificate and I was not at all convinced, they became quite defensive and I did press them for more details.
Thank you dear Papabear !! you have helped me to clarify so many queries in my mind.. Do you any idea on the quality of school @ Mambakkam location.. I saw SBOIA, VELAMMAL, MAHARISHI, CHRISTWOOD, SRI KRISH, COLOURS INDIA in this location.. pls pitch in your review. Thank you
You are welcome, its a pleasure to help out and share what little knowledge I have.
Geographic location prevents access to good teachers, that is the big challenge for the schools that you have named. You will be better off looking at OMR / Sholinganallur side rather than that far away.
I have information from friends on these schools -
SBOIA - Established system but very new and yet to get high quality teachers like in their other older schools
VELAMMAL - Going through financial crisis, several teachers have quit
MAHARISHI - The oldest of this lot, but English is a problem, most of the staff speak Tamil and children naturally only copy that.
CHRISTWOOD - No feedback, don't know where it is located, this is the first time I am hearing of this school, they seem to have a heavily religious philosophy, is that what you are looking for?
SRI KRISH - Not a very developed school, in a small infrastructure, when my friend visited the admin person was also doing teaching job.
COLOURS INDIA - Very remote location, also next to a factory which emits very bad odour throughout the day it seems.
Thank you papabear ! sent you pm . will be grateful if you can respond to that
I have responded to your PM
We currently live in Delhi. We are expecting a transfer to Chennai anytime before the next academic year. But we are not sure about the exact time of transfer. So, what to do when I apply for schools in Chennai as I won't be having any address proof with me.
Thanks for the help.
Even Im sailing in the same boat....your messages are very helpful.... I m from Ambattur area..... searching good cbse school for my son's grade 1 admission..... Can you give some suggestions of CBSE as well as Montessori schools in and around 10 kms.....
2. After middle school what board did the Montessori schools offer???