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‘Apeejay Nerul embodies diversity and inclusion in its true spirit’

Mr. Ajit Nair, parent of Apeejay Nerul class 3 students Aadhya and Advik Nair, says the school is excelling on a number of fronts including seamless online education

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Mr. Ajit Nair is a senior marketing manager with Sanofi India Ltd. He is the proud father of twins Aadhya Nair and Advik Nair, class 3 students at Apeejay Nerul. In an exclusive interview, he shares the progress of his children at school, their different personalities and his perception about the online classes. Edited excerpts:

Why did you choose Apeejay Nerul over other schools for the admission of your children?

I was educated in a CBSE school. In those days, the number of CBSE schools was limited. I remember Apeejay Nerul being the only private school which was driven by CBSE. It is one of the oldest CBSE schools in Nerul. So that is the first reason.  The second reason is that we stay within a two-kilometre radius of the school. So from the perspective of proximity it is very convenient for us. Thirdly, the education that Apeejay Nerul imparts in terms of academics is significantly more than other schools in the neighbourhood.

Please tell us a bit about your children and take us through their progress at school?

From an academic point of view, I think both of them are doing very well. I have been very particular about attending their parent-teacher meetings since they were in Nursery. Fortunately, I have always received this feedback from the teachers that academically both are very sound. But they are two very different personalities. Among the common factors (laughs) well, both of them have academic and co-curricular skills which are appreciated by the teaching faculty at Apeejay Nerul. Both of them are extroverted. They are very participative in all activities that come their way.

Advik is a very keen observer. I have got feedback from the school that he always tries to read up on things, look at YouTube for interesting videos on different subjects. He always tries to keep himself very agile when it comes to acquisition of knowledge. He has a very sharp concentration acumen because of which he is extremely focused on what he is trying to do. He enjoys playing cricket. During the lockdown, kids and their paunches were growing at an equal pace at home. (Laughs) So we were egging him on to jog and exercise. That’s how he started cricket and he enjoys it as well. He also enjoys instrumental music a lot. His favourite subjects at school are English and Science.

When it comes to Aadhya, well she is very mature as the elder sister. She is two minutes older than Advik. So, she is very sensitive and caring for Advik and for everyone else as well. She is very interested in dance. She has been training in classical Bharatanatyam for the past four years now. She performs on the stage for different forums both at school and outside. We pushed her in the lockdown for physical exercise, so she has picked up on basketball. She is very keen on subjects like Maths and Science. She enjoys doing sums and learning mathematical concepts. I have not seen many children do that at this age (laughs). She is also very interested in Science. 

Are the teachers engaging well with the students?

I would say that when the physical classes were on, the level of engagement was higher than what it is at present. But it is not the teachers who should be blamed. The lockdown caught the teachers unaware as well. But now a lot of them have acquired skills of digital pedagogy. The Maths teacher Ms Deepali Negi, who used to teach Aadhya and Advik, actually sat with a white board to explain the sums to children. Their English teacher Ms Ranjani Mishra, who is also their class teacher, engages equally well with the students. So, I think all their teachers are forming the foundation stones for the children. Language, Math and Science go a long way for the child.

My only argument is that the teachers must acquire more digital skills, such as there are plenty of things on the internet that can be shown to children to make academic concepts like food chain, water condensation simpler to understand. Videos have a deeper impact on young minds.

What is the best thing about the school?

 Apeejay Nerul does not have any disparity among the children based on anything. It embodies diversity and inclusion in its true spirit. The school takes academics very seriously. I always expected the school to deliver on these fronts and so far it has been delivering.

What is your perception about the online classes?

To me the online classes have been effective. But for the growth of a child it is very important that children mingle with children of different backgrounds so that they understand people better. Definitely in the online classes they are getting the knowledge, but they are missing out on team spirit and other values such as sharing and caring in the online classes. Having said that as a parent, I am dreaded to send them to school in the current circumstances of the pandemic. So, the online classes are the only solution and they have been going on very well. 

Arijit Roy is a trainee correspondent at Apeejay newsroom. He has done his masters in English literature from Delhi University and has a book of poems published by Writers Workshop India. He can be reached at [email protected]

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