Ashraya Neelbagh School
Dear Friends and Supporters of Ashraya,
In this quarter children were given various platforms to participate and exhibit their talents in academics, sports and cultural activities.
The first monthly tests for Grade 1-10 were held from 22nd to 24th of July 2013. The performance of the students was evaluated and was discussed in the staff meeting to help teachers understand where the children needed more assistance. In the month of August, tests were held from 25th to 27th. The children performed well in both the tests. The first semester examination for Grade 10 is scheduled to be held on 27th september to 5th October 2013.
Ashraya Neelbagh School solemnly celebrated its 18th annual day on 14th August 2013. It was a grand celebration which saw the little stars twinkle on the ground. Chief Guest, Sri Sandeep Chachra, Executive Director - ActionAid, Mrs. Shobha Bannerjee, Mrs. Sumati Satish, Mrs. Christy Abraham, Mrs. Naina Mallika Williams, Ms. Evalin Christabel, parents, friends, well-wishers and over 300 people were present on this occasion. The event commenced with the lamp lighting ceremony by the chief guest and the other dignitaries at 11:15 a.m. The Annual Day and the Founders Day are traditionally very important days in the school calendar - management, students, staff and friends - meet to commemorate Mr. David Horsburgh and his contributions in the field of education. Shri. Sandeep honored the founder by offering flowers and lighted the games torch. Sports activities were complemented by a marching band the beats of which infused a sense of pride and belongingness towards the alma mater.
Exhibition: showcasing the School’s accomplishment in various other departments was organised. Mr. Manjunath Reddy the Head Master presented the annual report showcasing the prominent events, scholastic and co- scholastic activities of the school during the academic year 2012-13. Appreciating the conducive learning environment and excellent infrastructure of the school Mr. Sandeep Chachra addressed the august gathering and motivated the parents to strengthen school-home connections and environment. In his address, he stressed upon the importance of education and said that 'One must always aim for higher studies and have perseverance and patience for the attainment of the goal' After that prizes were given to the students for academic excellence. It was followed by the cultural programmes. The programme came to the end with a vote of thanks proposed by Mr. Srinivas Reddy, Asst. Head Master.
Independence Day was observed to educate the children on its prominence in our history.
On September 21, 2013 our senior students participated in the GE Science Fair for educational institutions which was held in GE Campus Bangalore. This year’s topic was Agricultural Waste Management. It is an inevitable by-product that arises from various anthropogenic activities; it is also considered as one of the major sources of environmental degradation as it causes air, land, and water pollution and contributes to global warming. Different kinds of industries, change of lifestyle, and population growth are assumed to be among the main factors that increase the rate of waste generation globally and locally. Hence, proper waste management options are vitally important in terms of cost-effectiveness and environmental sustainability. They competed with 29 schools/ educational institutions and won the First place for coconut waste management. The students fared very well.
Some of the great uses of the coconut waste that were projected are :
1. Selection and school enrolment of children from poor and marginalized communities
As always, priority was given to children from below poverty line families. The School, currently, has 372 students studying, and 190 are enrolled in the sponsorship program of which 89 are construction labourers children, 8 are single parent children, 73 are daily wagers children, 6 auto drivers children and 14 are poor farmers children.
2. Provide residential facility to children - The total hostel strength is now, 100 children.
Construction Laborers – 49 boys and 40 girls
Single Parent – 3 boys and 5 girls
Daily Wagers – 1 boy and 2 girls
Total strength - 53 boys and 47 girls
3. Provide educational courses - This quarter all children have been attending classes regularly.
4. Provide vocational training courses and workshops (carpentry, pottery and tailoring) - All 372 children attend dance classes and 306 children from Grade 1- 10 attend computer and pottery training classes and from High School (Grade 6- 10) 80 boys attend carpentry and 69girls attend tailoring classes.
5. Organize cultural and sports activities
June 12th – Ms. Sunitha Kulkarni, volunteer from Self Organized Mediation Environments visited the school and organised Fun at learning. These activities encouraged children of all ages to read and enact short English stories.
June 21st – Drawing competition
June 22nd – Cultural program by 10th grade students – Drama - Health is Wealth, Folk songs and dance were appreciated by all.
July 2nd – Mr. Mohammed Khalil (B.E.O) and Mr. Padmanab Rao (DDPE) visited the school to review the Primary school files and the Renewal of Recognition for primary school has been extended for 6 years (2013 - 2019).
July 5th –Sports competition, Kabadi for boys and throw ball for girls.
July 21st – Cultural program by 4th grade students- songs, dance and drama were appreciated by one and all.
July 25th –Inter school sports competition was held and in the primary level, the school is qualified to the Taluk level in the following events: 100,200,400 mts ,400 mts relay, Shuttle cock, Kabadi, Cricket, Volley ball, Basket ball and Yoga. On spot pick & enact competition was organized for juniors and seniors in the school.
August 2nd and 3rd – Yoga workshop for seniors and juniors was conducted.
August 14th – Founder’s Day and Annual Sports Day was observed.
August 15th – Independence Day was celebrated.
August 16th and 17th – Taluk level sports competition were held in Srinivaspur Taluk and qualified for District level in the following events: 100,200,400 mts race, Shuttle cock and Yoga.
September 21st – seniors are participating in the GE Science fair, the topic given is Agricultural waste management. 5 models and posters were prepared on Paddy, Silk worm, vegetables, sugarcane and coconut garden waste management.
6. Maintenance of a computer lab - All children from Grade 1-10, i.e. 306 children, have been attending computer classes. The computer lab is used by each child for two hours a week
7. Orientation meetings with families - Parents belonging to below poverty line families (migrant construction workers, petty traders, domestic workers) are actively supporting the right to education of their children. 26 children who passed out of 10th grade are pursuing their higher education
8. Sensitization meetings with community’s representatives - We have a good relationship with the community representatives and they are more than willing to extend their support. The Local Member of the Legislative Assembly has promised to get a 50 thousand liter overhead tank for Ashraya Neelbagh School as a token of appreciation.
Training workshops enhanced learning opportunities and required teaching aids are provided to teachers in a timely manner. These boost their confidence and motivate them to continue as effective teachers
Periodic PTA meets are organised to raise awareness among parents and provide them with an option to enrol their children in a good quality, easily accessible residential school. This would act as an enabler for holistic child development that engages children themselves in their learning by using classrooms and cooperative learning methods. This equips children with 3 Ls - learning, life skill and livelihood skill to secure a better future.
On behalf of the entire Ashraya staff and Board Members I would like to thank you for your support. Your support and positive comments are the fuel that keeps us moving forward to make Ashraya Neelbagh School a sustainable Project.
Appreciate all your support!
Thanks and Regards,
Project Head – Ashraya Neelbagh School
This quarter has been a time to celebrate, it gives me immense pleasure to share that, Ashraya Neelbagh School, a Kannada medium rural school secured 100% results consecutively for the 5th time and this year with 100% first class, out of 280 schools in Kolar District, despite having several problems.
On 18th of June 2013, Ashraya Neelbagh School won the “State Best Environment -Friendly School Award” or “Parisara Mitra Shale Award” out of 7,324 schools, from the Government of Karnataka and Karnataka State Pollution Control Board.
This milestone was achieved only because of the dedication of students and teachers. There were many people, who strived for the success. On behalf of the entire Ashraya staff and Board Members I would like to thank you for your support. We hope that the school would continue this performance in future too.
The majorities of our students are first generation literates who belong to the most vulnerable groups – Migrant construction workers, domestic helpers, daily wagers, single parent, auto drivers, poor farmers and also belonging to SC/ST communities.
While all 26 students, who appeared for the examination, were successful and secured first class marks, 3 students - Karthik, Poojashree and Sandhyashree bagged Distinctions. Jayashree scored 99 and Narendra scored 98 in Social Studies and are the toppers in Kolar District.
Due to the high standard of education attained, the 26 scholars from Neelbagh have won various scholarships from the State Government, Individuals, Ngo’s and other institutions, to pursue their university studies. All 26 students’ i.e 14girls and 12 boys are continuing their education and 3 girls have moved into the Ashraya hostel facilities to continue their higher education in Bangalore.
The school hostel reopened for old boarders on 15th May 2013 and the School reopened after the summer break on 16th May 2013.
On June 5th, the new admissions list was finalized. Forty three students were shortlisted and thirty three were admitted for LKG, 20 new students for senior classes. The school made no difference based on caste, religion or ethnic group. Currently, with the new admissions, the School has 372 students
The School received a total of 209 and 143 applications for LKG and other class admissions, respectively, where the number of seats available was only 30 and 16, respectively. This is a significant indicator of the need, the performance and the reputation of the School in the District.
During LKG admissions, as always, priority was given to children from below poverty line families and the School continues to give impetus to ‘girl child’ education in the rural area. About 50% of the applicants, who were granted admissions in LKG and senior classes, are girls, thereby ensuring equal opportunities to girl children to access good quality education. Improved access to education for girl children from most vulnerable groups ensures that children are not exposed to situations of trafficking, sexual abuse or forced into a marriage or child labour. Further, 50% of children attending the school are girls.
The school ensures that no child drops out of school and they have the support to ensure that they get high quality of education along with opportunities to develop their overall personality and achieve significant learning improvements within a short span of time, To ensure that there are no girl children dropping out of the school,
Project Head – Ashraya
ASHRAYA NEELBAGH SCHOOL
The school provides a distinctive educational environment that enables young persons to grow not only in intellectual capacities, but also in other dimensions of their being. It also provides a flexible curriculum, which creates an atmosphere conducive to innovative teaching and a rich range of learning. It’s the only rural bilingual school. In the Annual status of Education report 2011, Karnataka has been rated as the State with the lowest number of schools with good infrastructure and basic facilities, in rural areas. In such a state, Ashraya- Neelbagh School has played a major role to change the perception of people about the rural education system in Karnataka.
Today, Ashraya Neelbagh caters to 351 (177 Girls and 174 Boys) deserving students from below poverty line families as against 174 (74 Girls and 100 Boys) students in 2003, showing a 140% increase in the number of girl children, over the past few years, that the school is reaching out to achieve the Millennium Development Goal of achieving universal primary education and promote gender equality.
In August our students participated in the Inter School Science fair held in Gownapalli, they competed with 20 schools and won the First place for Reuse model.
In September the GE Science Fair for educational institutions was held in Bangalore. The students fared very well and received second prize for Water sprinkler model.
Students participated in the annual inter school essay competition held on 14th of December 2012. Around 62 schools competed but Neelbagh transcended others. The topic given was “The importance of Ozone”. Three of our high school students participated and are the winners of this year’s Kolar district level essay writing contest.The first, second and third place was bagged by Ashraya Neelbagh School. Jayasreeof 10th grade won the first place, followed by her classmate Manikanta, second and their junior Beemanandha of 9th grade won the third place.
Workshops and Enhanced learning opportunities provided by the School :
The school continues to drive the ‘Importance of education’ and strives towards providing a holistic environment for the children by offering opportunities for all rounded development to all the children without any discrimination in the rural areas, thereby contributing to a future with educated and informed youngsters.
ü Clown therapy
ü Yoga workshop
ü Teachers’ training
ü Dance and Theatre workshops :
ü Self Organized Mediation Environments (SOMEs):
ü Sex education workshop
ü Art Workshop :
ü Career Counseling workshops
Cultural / Sports activities
The school observed a wide range of events for students to explore their creative and artistic interests, hone their talents, and develop self-management and interpersonal skills.
The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential... these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence. Students of Ashraya Neelbagh School rightlyprove this quote by their magnificent performance and Victory over Teams from other schools in Taluk / District level and in Inter NGO sports. They emerged as champions both in individual and team sports
Taluk / District Level Inter School Sports Meet:
The performance of our students was remarkable and qualified to compete in the District level sports meet. Students participated in various events namely: Long jump, High jump, Shuttlecock, 100mts, 200mts, 400mts race, Javelin, Basketball and won in most of the events.
Inter NGO Sports Meet:
v 40 students in the age group of 8 -14 years participated.
v Out of 22 events conducted, they won in 20 events bagging 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes.
v Ashraya Neelbagh school was awarded the Best Team and Overall Championship award.
We Need You
The community is proud to have Neelbagh School in its midst. We've also had important visitors through the year who have been impressed greatly with the school and see it as a 'Rural Model School'.
What we have achieved is very little ….You too can support this wonderful cause and uplift a child in need today. So donate now and help us reach more less fortunate children this Academic Year.
To run this project, the cost of providing education and holistic development and thereby transforming a child’s life, works out to INR.15000 per annum. May we appeal to you to support as many needy children as you desire.
Ashraya Neelbagh School and Ashraya Crèches continue to provide opportunities to underprivileged children from below poverty line families; Out of the total of 351 children studying at Neelbagh, we currently have 177 girls and 174 boys studying. Currently, the hostel has a total 101 children, out of which 90 are children of migrant laborers.
The School closed on October 17th for Dussehra holidays. The children were very excited to finish their exams on 17th and leave to their homes for a ten day long break. A Parents’ teachers’ meeting was called for on the last day of School i.e. 17th October 2012. The meeting helped to update the parents on the performance of their children and improve their awareness on various subjects. The highlights of the meeting were:
The School reopened on 28th October and the campus was bustling with noise and activity, as the teachers and children were back to the grind. The month of November and December were filled with activities and workshops for seniors and juniors likewise. Art, Yoga, Dance and Theatre workshops provided an opportunity to explore students' creative and artistic interests, hone their talents, and develop self-management and interpersonal skills.
On the academic front, the senior (10th grade) children have been busy preparing for the preparatory exams in January and remedial classes are being conducted after regular school hours to help students with difficult subjects. Teachers spend time after school hours to help slow learners. Day scholars of 10th Grade joined the boarding in early January to benefit from special classes. Children are seen studying very hard for the upcoming final exams in January and March.
The New Year's eve was celebrated with great pomp and show. The evening had special cultural programmes such as singing, dance and drama by our talented children. They enjoyed themselves and welcomed the New Year with great enthusiasm.
An interesting collaboration with Adelphi University is being considered, through the volunteer organization, ‘Leave Your Mark’, to strengthen Ashraya’s Volunteer Program, in which their internship students, with a passion to teach, can volunteer with the children at Neelbagh School.
Cultural, Sports and events
The kids had a great time at the Cultural and Sports events that were held in this quarter. It included competitions in various sports such as kabadi, throwball, cricket, basketball, long jump and baseball. In cultural programmes children actively participated in folk singing and dance competition and free style group dance competition. These various events helped to bring out their hidden talents.
The ancient Greek philosopher, scientist and physician once said that individuals are known by what they repeatedly do – and if this is true, excellence and achievement are not an act but a habit.
Yet again, students from Neelbagh school participated in the annual inter school essay competition held on 14th of December 2012. Around 62 schools competed but Neelbagh transcended others. The topic given was “The importance of Ozone”. Three of our high school students participated and are the winners of this year’s Kolar district level essay writing contest.
The first, second and third place was bagged by Ashraya Neelbagh School.Jayasree of 10th grade won the first place, followed by her classmate Manikanta - second and their junior Beemanandha of 9th grade won the third place.
Kolar district’s senior officers, Mr. Jalaluddin, C.E.O- Zilla Panchyat,Mr.Padmanabh, Deputy Director Public Education Institute, Mr. Md. Kalil, Block Education Officer and Mr. Vishwanth ,District commissioner distributed Certificates of commendation to the winners.
The entrants enjoyed researching, reading for and writing their essays as much as their science teacher enjoyed mentoring them.
Workshops and Enhanced learning opportunities provided by the School:
1. Yoga Workshop – From 5th to 8th November the workshop was conducted by Ms. Sukanya from Art of Living gave senior students the practical knowledge and techniques to unlock their deepest potential and bring fullness to life. Whether happy and successful or feeling the stress of poor health, disappointments, or fear, every student was cared for and came away lighter, with effective techniques for releasing mental and physical stress and increasing his or her health, energy, peace, self-knowledge, awareness, and joy.
2. Art Workshop – on 2nd and 3rd November the workshop was conducted by Mr. Umesh Kumar taught the students that ART, wherein ‘A’ stands for building ATTENTION, ATTITUDE and AWARENESS,‘R’ stands for creating ‘Response’, and ‘T’ takes them TOWARD awareness of Self and Surrounding. Students were made aware about the dynamism in the creation of art that is fuelled by factors such as medium and techniques of art.
3. Career Counselling workshops – on 28th November and 4th of December the workshop was for the ninth and tenth grade students respectively. It provided an understanding to the students the importance of one’s academic potential, attribute, personality, talents, interest, expectation, resource, strength and weakness while choosing a course for a right career at the right time for a bright future.
4. Dance and Theatre workshops – Students from 5th to 10th grades are encouraged to participate in these workshops. It’s a source of fun and entertainment for the children. This workshop was conducted by Mr. Anand on 30th November and on 1st December. The children thoroughly enjoyed the workshop.
The crèches at Shivajinagar, Yelahanka and Sidapura have been running in an efficient manner. The Social worker made three visits in this quarter to monitor and evaluate the functioning and maintenance of the crèches. The doctor also paid monthly visits to the crèches to monitor the general health of the children. Progress in health and nutrition is evaluated and he also advises the teachers on nutritional requirements so that they can inform the families.
An average of about 98 - 101 children attended the three crèches in this quarter.
We'd like to take this opportunity to thank our sponsors and want to reiterate that you are making a huge difference to the lives of these children.
Ashraya Neelbagh School, celebrated its Founder's Day, on August 13th with Mr. Ashok Hattangady, one of the main patrons of Ashraya, being the Chief Guest. Various sports events were held in which the children participated and did very well, which was followed by a beautiful cultural show with folk dance, music and drama.
On the Annual Day, we got an opportunity to interact with the parents and find out about what they think about Neelbagh School and how it is meeting the needs of the deserving children in the villages. Here are some of their responses-
Madappa, a construction worker, earns a meager salary of 2100 per month. His son Marilinga is in 8th standard and daughter Devamma is in 6th standard, studying at Ashraya Neelbagh School. He says - ‘First and foremost our children are given hostels to stay, which is a blessing. Being a Construction worker, I stay in Bangalore I cannot travel up and down every day, but Neelbagh School has made us free from the ‘tension’ (I think he means ‘stress’) by providing shelter to our children. ‘They are looked after very well by the affectionate teachers and kind staff. Even if our children are not well, we have no reason to worry, there is hospital care that is being given to them in our absence. AshrayaNeelbagh School not only gives education and food, but it’s just like a “sweet home” for my children. Children are allowed to play games and participate in other activities, which is good for them’, he says.
When he was asked, what he thought was different at Ashraya-Neelbagh School from other schools? He promptly responded, ‘Neelbagh School gives the children good medical attention when they are sick whereas other private schools are not doing so. And lot of private schools do not provide hostels to children. The teachers here are dedicated and affectionate. They share a good rapport with the children.' Neelbagh is the only school that lays emphasis on life skills and provides the children with vocational training. I think it is important because, tomorrow, in case they are not academically oriented, they have a skill in hand to rely on, which will help them earn a living’.
He added saying, -‘When children come out of Ashraya, they not only have education but also other skilled works with them. No other school empowers children like this!!. In School, our children are safe, and we feel that our children are at home', he smiled. 'Neelbagh is not only a school but a “Temple of Education” in the lives of the children. I know my children have a bright future in Ashraya-Neelbagh School’.
Venkatanarayana, a daily wage earner, earning a salary of about 2000 per month, says his son Karthik is in 10th standard, in Neelbagh School and daughter Shilpa Rani is studying final year, Bachelor of Science, in a college. He says, -‘Neelbagh has a very good environment for the children. All the children are getting lunch, which is very important for us, as a daily wage earner, we cannot afford to send lunch for them every day. All the children, irrespective of caste, creed, etc. are given equal care and facilities. There is no discrimination. This is very special to us!! Teachers also don’t make any discrimination. They are very humble and polite.
‘The bus facility has made our children to move without any tension’ We do not worry about their safety when they are travelling from home to school as they are going by bus’. ‘We are happy with the service offered by Ashraya-Neelbagh School. and that students learn computer, Carpentry, Tailoring and Electrical work. This is very good for their future’, he says with a beaming smile.
When he was asked, what he thought was different at Ashraya-Neelbagh School from other schools? He emphatically said,’ AshrayaNeelbagh School does not demand donations, whereas private schools demands thousands and lakhs of rupees. Meals are given to children whereas private school expects us to send packed meals for them. This is the only school with variety in education and other skills. Neelbagh School Headmaster and teachers respect the parents and hear their problems whereas private schools are not concerned with parents’ problems. Thank you for everything’.
The following workshops and enhanced learning opportunities were provided by the School:
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