Alternative Curriculum Schools


The first half of the day is devoted to studies and the rest to skill training in carpentry, pottery, masonry, permaculture, herbal medicines, book binding and tailoring. It must also be one of the few places training children in Bhagotam, a local folk art form. Only children above nine years are admitted, many dropouts from government schools. There are no fees to be paid in this school, run by the Deccan Development Society (DDS), a non-government organisation working in this area (to conserve traditional crops and agro-bio-diversity), for the last 15 years. Before 1998, most children had never been to any school, according to the school administrator, Bhimsen Murthy. Even now, only 10 per cent may have attended school earlier. Many worked as labourers or helped their parents with housework, grazing or farming. So far, 63 students have appeared for their SSC examinations and over 40 have passed either in the first or the second attempt. A children's committee is involved in decision-making and every day, the general assembly is devoted to various subjects. The student's skills and knowledge are analysed during the admission test and, till the fourth level, no government textbooks are used. The teachers prepare the curriculum themselves and the children are taught formal subjects like the languages, mathematics, science and the social sciences from the fourth level only.- Education for a lifetime, MEENA MENON., Hindu, 13/01/2002, /eldoc/n30_/education_for_lifetime.html

Centre for Learning

Everybody knows that the system of education in India is archaic, unimaginative, inadequate and corrupt. Not so well-known are the many exciting experiments in non-formal education that are springing up in little pockets away from the mainstream. In the first of a collection of articles on the subject, the author discusses the fundamentals of JKrishnamurt's concept of education and their application at the Centre For Learning R eligious teachers through the ages have questioned commonly held assumptions about the nature of the relationship between knowledge and the mind. They have suggested, in vari-ous ways, that mistaken notions about this relationship are at the very heart of Kabir Jaithirtha human conflict at a personal or societal level. Amongst others, J Krishnamurti ex-plored and talked about this relationship for over 60 years till his death in 1986. He also pointed out the relevance of such questions to education, and indeed was directly responsible for starting several schools in India and abroad. He sug-gested, and I summarise, The undoing of knowledge is the fundamental revo-lution. Most of us approach life with knowledge — what we have learned, been taught or gathered in the incidents There's a method in this anarchy Geetha Rao visits Poorna, a Bangalore-based non-formal school which refuses to have a set syllabus and uses textbooks as little as possible Five years ago, Indira Jaisimha finally decided to take her three children out of regular schools and teach them herself at home.
At that time, her older daughter Sumathi, now 15, had said, "You've always talked about your own school. If you want to do something about it, do it now." Indira and her children were fed up not so much with the school they were at, as with the whole system of edu-cation. "Learning has become synonymous with passing examinations. Every strategy is geared to the marking sys-tem. The formal education system does not necessarily increase children's knowledge, at least not real knowledge. It emphasises a narrow set of skills. There is very little room for creativity, or for developing moral, spiritual, ethi-cal or aesthetic values. Generally, there are only token classes for art. And exams form the focal point of the ex-ercise/ ' Thus was born Poorna, or completeness. "We do not say that our school is ideal. But we try to make learning holistic. We depend as little as possible on textbooks/' says Indira."We base out lessons on topic webs. We select a topic and work on it for a month. It could be water, or soil...
We look at it from different an-gles: they swim in a pool, we discuss condensation, mo-lecular structure, pollution of water bodies; children write stories and poems, they enact plays on the subject. We try to connect the topic through as many dimensions as pos-sible, and through various avenues of expression." Just one topic web involves subjects such as language, chem-istry, environment and dramatics. "Moreover, if the class is interested in a particular as-pect of the topic, we go along. Learning is easier then." There are four teachers at Poorna. While there is no par-ticular syllabus, Indira clarifies, "we are not anarchists. We do not follow the prescribed state or ICSE or CBSE syllabus. Poorna draws its own syllabus for each year while being aware of the syllabus that other streams follow. At the end of the year, we discuss the syllabus with the chil-dren for their feedback. "At this time there is also a self-assessment based on observation, but no grading and mark-ing and slotting. Children answer quizzes, and do dictation.
"We don't mark them, but they can see where they stand. They do possess an inherent competitive spirit. But we don't make a big issue of it." "Moral issues are dealt with, but not in the usual fash-ion. Conflicts are discussed at the assembly in a group setting. We do not punish — we would rather the discus-sion came from within them. It we punish, they will react with aggression — which will not solve the problem, Con-troversy is not suppressed, but talked about. If a child mis-behaves, the other children ask him to go out of class. work off his energy, cool off and then be free to walk into and accidents of life. This knowl-edge becomes our conditioning, shapes our thoughts and makes us conform to the pattern of what has been. Only the mind that is un-doing what it has gathered is ca-pable of understanding. But for most of us, knowledge becomes the centre from which we judge, evaluate, accept or reject.
Can the mind free itself of knowledge? Can that self which is essentially knowledge be dissolved so that the mind is really humble, inno-cent and therefore capable of per-ceiving truth?' This is perhaps the most urgent chal-lenge facing us — to understand, not the details of a particular influence and how it comes about, but the very essence of all influence and what it is to be free of it.
The relationship between mind and knowledge then undergoes a transforma-tion. Knowledge, then, isn't the frame-work through the limits of which the mind functions and therefore divides. It is merely an instrument unable to impose There is no place for competition and comparison here itself as a screen between the mind and reality. The transformation of the mind is usu-ally considered the domain of religion and tradition.
Unfortunately, religious tradition rarely, if ever, approaches this question in a spirit of enquiry free of dogma. Instead, it seeks to impose a set of beliefs and patterns peculiar to that tradition and raises that to the status of unquestionable, absolute truth. Hence, perhaps, the deep-rooted divi-sions that arise in the name of re-ligion. As a reaction to the dogmatism of religious tradition, science sees itself as a movement of free en-quiry. This is, to an extent, true. Science seeks to construct mod-els through which we can explain, predict and control the world around us. But science's capac-ity to explain seems to come at a price — an increasing sense of alienation and a feeling that the whole movement of life is ex-plained (away) and is emptied of meaning. I would like to suggest that religious tradition and science have one thing in common: both seek to create models with the help of which we hope to relate to reality and make sense of it. The mod-els of the former are felt to be immuta-ble and sacred, while the latter is pre-pared to be more humble, though less so now than in the past. But it may nei-ther be possible nor necessary to relate class."
There are 23 children now at Poorna, and some of the teachers happen to be parents of the students. Poorna has three large classrooms and a lot of unused area, leased out to it on rent. There are no regular classes, but children are grouped according to age between 5 and 7 years, 7 and 9 years, 9 and 11 years, 11 and 13 years, and 13 and 15 years. Each group is given a name: Ashwini, Rohini, Kritika, Mrijashira, Vishaka. This is to avoid the concept of hierarchy. (In-between age groups will be added on as and when required). There is vertical integration for art, theatre, puppetry and clay work. The day begins with an assembly, where a child lights a candle. This is done in rotation every day so that each child gets a turn. The children say their prayers: it could be a shloka, a hymn or a rhyme. "The concept of god is neither denied nor vehemently asserted." Children do yoga every day. Academic subjects are taught upto 1 o'clock in the af-ternoon. After lunch, it is time for art, craft, puppetry, clay work, lab classes and gardening. "Seasonal festivals of various faiths are celebrated to help children stay in tune with the rhythms of nature.
The mythological or historical significance of the festival is explained with the help of stories or drama. Children often prepare special foods or sweets associated with a festival as part of their celebra-tions." Children are taken on visits to Bandipura, Bisle Ghat and other places. They have even lived with tribals in Orissa and made leather puppets at the Khadi Rehabilitation Cen-tre at Dharwad. As regards joining the mainstream, Indira says, "At around 15, or whenever they are ready for it, students can take the National Open School (NOS) secondary level examination, conducted by the Ministry of Human Re-source Development, New Delhi. Students can sit for the exam after registration with the NOS at the Bangalore centre at Mathikere. This exam is recognised as equiva-lent to the tenth standard examination by various state boards of education, IITs and other institutions. Thus, af-ter passing this exam, they can join a local college for PUC, or take the NOS Senior Secondary exam (12th std.) or take the British A level exam privately in case they wish to study abroad." Thus, students from this school fit into the mainstream of education eventually. But do they Fit in socially? They are aware that they go to a different kind of school They know that no children will play with them in the month of March, as the others are busy with exams. Other kids tell them how lucky they are not to have exams or uniforms. These days, students themselves ask for more quizzes and homework. When asked about the school's future plans, Indira says she is thinking of working with the underprivileged, per-haps children of construction workers nearby. Her daugh-ter Sumathi plans to take a year off after her NOS exam, to start teaching the labourers' children. Indira is content that the school is steadily working to-wards developing young children into complete human beings. She is not "in the game of making failures of chil-dren, which is what the formal system of education does. Schools generally take in the top layer based on merit, that's probably just 1 per cent. What about the rest who do not make it? They are branded failures. Everybody is valu-able — whether a gardener or an artist." But even as more schools like Poorna crop up across the country, they will remain more the exception than the rule for another few decades at least.

Through models. Indeed, mod-els may come in the way of re-lating, whether to people or to the world around us. They project a framework which it-self becomes the barrier to a re-lationship. This is not to deny the functional value of models in technology and in science. It becomes important, there-fore, not only to communicate models and the art of model-making, but also to help per-ceive completely and directly the intrinsic limitation, arbi-trariness, and indeed the enor-mous danger of models in the field of relationships. The most endur-ing model which holds the brain in its grip is the sense of self. In seeking to escape the loneliness and incomplete-ness imposed by this model, we create the complications that haunt our lives and harm all that we touch.
Mankind has tried to wrestle with the conflict inherent in the sense of self with its demands and desires through subjugation, discipline, control and es-cape. There is a fundamental contradic-tion involved in this exercise. The self, which seeks to deny, to control, and to Projects, experiments, lab work and field trips: at Centre for Learning the attempt is to keep things as concrete as possible subdue, is not different from the self that is to be subdued. So control is an end-less exercise in boxing with one's shadow. The very discipline imposes another pattern on the earlier one. Pat-tern, goal and achievement is the stuff from which the self is constructed and in which it finds continuity. What then is the right action? Krishnamurti has pointed out that choiceless awareness is free of the con-tradiction involved in conflict. Is it pos-sible for the brain to be choicelessly aware of the endless movement of patterns, reactions, and condition-ing, of belief, hope and desire, so that in the very awareness the brain begins to free itself of the limitations imposed by knowledge? Choiceless be-cause any control, discrimina-tion or suppression is the mechanism of the self in action again. Choiceless also because in being so the division be-tween the controller and that which is controlled is cut at the very root.
This movement of choiceless awareness is also a movement of learning, qualitatively differ-ent from what we normally understand by that word. In this learning there is no accumulation of knowledge and skills to be then used in action. It is not a tech-nique to be mastered, for that creates another pattern within the boundaries of which the brain seeks to function. There is no goal or achievement, only the awareness in which the reaction of memory is seen and dropped. This is in-deed learning, because the mind is con-stantly freeing itself of patterns and prejudices and is therefore never static.
It would seem that to come upon this Admission fee: one sapling Vikasana is a gurukul of sorts, where students learn not just reading and writing but carpentry, tailoring, gardening, cooking, weaving and pottery. Geetha Rao reports If Poorna is oriented to urban, middle class children, Vikasana, at the otherend of Bangalore city, is a school for the under-privileged. Situated at Doddakallasandra, it is off Kanakapura Road, The only way to get there is to follow your nose, and the sound of chattering children. Malathi started Vikasana 20 years ago, after she was inspired by David Horsburgh's methods of teaching at Neelbagh school in Rayalpadu, Karnataka. His emphasis was on a small school with not more than 20 children. an environment where a child can observe and learn at his own pace, in a free and flexible atmosphere, without any pressure, He/she is encouraged to solve problems on his own, to be himself, and not to cater to a teacher's expecta-tions. Malathi places all her cards on the table before the child joins.
"I inform the parents that we do not give a certifi-cate at the end of schooling." However, students who wish to sit for the Std 7 or SSLC examinations are trained for them. Thus, those who wish to fit into the mainstream can do so. There is counselling for those who wish to pursue careers. Another unusual aspect of this school is that children do not pay any donations or fees in cash. They do it in kind: the admission fee is a plant — so each admitted child brings a sapling, plants it, and nurtures it. The monthly fee is attendance. The children must come to school regu-Which they do. Because they like it so much, Most of them are children of local rural landless farmers; some movement of learning is central to any educational endeavour and describes the function of a school in the most signifi-cant way. It would have an impact on every aspect of education: the way we look at learning, the way we teach, our understanding of creativity, order, disci-pline and morality. The relationship be-tween individual and individual, and be-tween individual and society would un-dergo a profound transformation. Unfor-tunately, this is not so in practice. Educators seem to be wholly preoccupied with the transmission of knowledge. The increasingly utilitarian view of educa-tion, to gain skills for a career, is not a surprising result. What then is the environment in which such learning can be nurtured? I will describe one attempt to create such an environment. Centre for Learning is a small school outside Bangalore.
It was started in 1990 by a group of people in-terested in the educational philosophy of J Krishnamurti. Central to CFL's educa-tional philosophy is the concern with the awakening of an awareness which lies beyond knowledge. There has been an attempt to bring this concern into every aspect of the school. I will outline some of these features: The school is small. Keeping the num-bers small takes away the need for stand-ardised approaches in the imparting of skills. The teacher has a much better opportunity to understand the needs and difficulties of each student; his talents, capacities and interests, his particular ways of learning. The teacher also has a much better chance of responding to them. The small numbers also enable teachers and parents to engage in an on-going dialogue about education, bring-ing up children and life in general. There is a sense of moving together. This par-ticipation by parents is a very important source of strength for a school which is attempting something new.
There are two other important reasons for keeping the school small. The teacher body is small enough to allow for a fully participatory style of func-tioning in the administration of the school. There is no hierarchy. All major decisions are taken by the entire body of teachers. There is a sense of shared responsibility which is necessary to cre-ate the right atmosphere for exploring something new. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, in the classroom it-self, when the teacher is interacting with a group as small as eight or ten children, there is the possibility of an atmosphere of shared attention, a contact which lies beyond the task at hand. This attention is the very essence of learning and dis-cipline: it has nothing whatsoever to do with acquiring a skill. Key to creating the right environment is the relationship between the teacher and the student. It cannot be based on authority and fear because these are the very instruments of conformity and pat-tern. There has to be affection and trust in which the student feels cared for.
Once again the size of the school becomes important. Not only do the teachers and students know each other well, but their relationship extends beyond the school. There is a spirit of shared enquiry and dialogue. Children are encouraged to raise questions and examine issues with-out bias. In such an environment, major problems of order and discipline rarely crop up. Competition and comparison do not play a role in this educational pro-gramme. There are no examinations. Because of the close contact, the teacher has an understanding of the student's difficulties and abilities. Difficulties are resolved either in the course of teaching the subject itself or through specially Vikasana, where tending the vegetable patch is as important as learning languages have opted out of looking after cattle to learn to read and write. Talking about a day at Vikasana, Malathi says, "The centre starts its activities at 8.30 a m. All the children are entrusted with duties like caring for trees, cleaning the rooms and surroundings, providing drinking water. Then, the children assemble to sing songs in Kannada, English, Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, Bengali, French, German and Ital-ian. This is followed by yogasanas specially designed for children." Lessons in academic subjects follow.
Everyone accepts cooking responsibilities for lunch. Lunch is free. After-noon classes include pottery, carpentry, weaving, paper-folding, painting and gardening. Making handicrafts is integrated into the daily process. Two children at a time look after the vegetable patch. They adopt trees and look after them. Alongside, they make their own desks and chairs; build their own rooms; make their own clothes. Malathi continues, "Children learn to read, write and speak three languages. The highest priority is given to the student-teacher relationship." Some students have now returned to the school as teachers, Malathi seems to have achieved the school's aims and objectives: free, quality education to the rural poor, with an emphasis on self-learning, helping students to choose careers after their education, being a resource centre for non-formal education, imparting awareness on tree plant-ing and the need to maintain ecological balance, educa-tion for peace and not for competition. Some children have had training at the Aurobindo Ashram, Delhi, Akruti, and Mritchakatika (a centre for pottery) in Bangalore, "thus underscoring the fact that one does not need to depend on certificates to choose careers." Funds are a major problem at Vikasana.
Catering to about 20-odd children, and providing them free lunch, books and other material, can be a juggler's act. Though the school receives some money from the Neelbagh Trust and other bodies, the funds are not sufficient. Vikasana needs funds and donations from philanthropists and institutions. That would go a long way in ensuring that the school continues to grow. Geetha Rao is a Bangalore - based journalist.
Movement of learning is central to any educational endeavour and describes the function of a school in the most signifi-cant way. It would have an impact on every aspect of education: the way we look at learning, the way we teach, our understanding of creativity, order, disci-pline and morality. The relationship be-tween individual and individual, and be-tween individual and society would un-dergo a profound transformation. Unfor-tunately, this is not so in practice. Edu-cators seem to be wholly preoccupied with the transmission of knowledge. The increasingly utilitarian view of educa-tion, to gain skills for a career, is not a surprising result.
What then is the environment in which such learning can be nurtured? I will describe one attempt to create such an environment. Centre for Learning is a small school outside Bangalore. It was started in 1990 by a group of people in-terested in the educational philosophy of J Krishnamurti. Central to CFL's educa-tional philosophy is the concern with the awakening of an awareness which lies beyond knowledge. There has been an attempt to bring this concern into every aspect of the school. I will outline some of these features: The school is small. Keeping the num-bers small takes away the need for stand-ardised approaches in the imparting of skills. The teacher has a much better opportunity to understand the needs and difficulties of each student; his talents, capacities and interests, his particular ways of learning.
The teacher also has a much better chance of responding to them. The small numbers also enable teachers and parents to engage in an on-going dialogue about education, bring-ing up children and life in general. There is a sense of moving together. This par-ticipation by parents is a very important source of strength for a school which is attempting something new. There are two other important reasons for keeping the school small. The teacher body is small enough to allow for a fully participatory style of func-tioning in the administration of the school. There is no hierarchy. All major decisions are taken by the entire body of teachers. There is a sense of shared responsibility which is necessary to cre-ate the right atmosphere for exploring something new. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, in the classroom it-self, when the teacher is interacting with a group as small as eight or ten children, there is the possibility of an atmosphere of shared attention, a contact which lies beyond the task at hand. This attention is the very essence of learning and dis-cipline: it has nothing whatsoever to do with acquiring a skill. Key to creating the right environment is the relationship between the teacher and the student. It cannot be based on authority and fear because these are the very instruments of conformity and pat-tern. There has to be affection and trust in which the student feels cared for.
Once again the size of the school becomes important. Not only do the teachers and students know each other well, but their relationship extends beyond the school. There is a spirit of shared enquiry and dialogue. Children are encouraged to raise questions and examine issues with-out bias. In such an environment, major problems of order and discipline rarely crop up. Competition and comparison do not play a role in this educational pro-gramme. There are no examinations. Because of the close contact, the teacher has an understanding of the student's difficulties and abilities. Difficulties are resolved either in the course of teaching the subject itself or through specially Vikasana, where tending the vegetable patch is as important as learning languages have opted out of looking after cattle to learn to read and write. Talking about a day at Vikasana, Malathi says, "The centre starts its activities at 8.30 a m. All the children are entrusted with duties like caring for trees, cleaning the rooms and surroundings, providing drinking water. Then, the children assemble to sing songs in Kannada, English, Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, Bengali, French, German and Ital-ian. This is followed by yogasanas specially designed for children." Lessons in academic subjects follow.
Everyone accepts cooking responsibilities for lunch. Lunch is free. After-noon classes include pottery, carpentry, weaving, paper-folding, painting and gardening. Making handicrafts is integrated into the daily process. Two children at a time look after the vegetable patch. They adopt trees and look after them. Alongside, they make their own desks and chairs; build their own rooms; make their own clothes. Malathi continues, "Children learn to read, write and speak three languages. The highest priority is given to the student-teacher relationship." Some students have now returned to the school as teachers, Malathi seems to have achieved the school's aims and objectives: free, quality education to the rural poor, with an emphasis on self-learning, helping students to choose careers after their education, being a resource centre for non-formal education, imparting awareness on tree plant-ing and the need to maintain ecological balance, educa-tion for peace and not for competition. Some children have had training at the Aurobindo Ashram, Delhi, Akruti, and Mritchakatika (a centre for pottery) in Bangalore, "thus underscoring the fact that one does not need to depend on certificates to choose careers." Funds are a major problem at Vikasana.
Catering to about 20-odd children, and providing them free lunch, books and other material, can be a juggler's act. Though the school receives some money from the Neelbagh Trust and other bodies, the funds are not sufficient. Vikasana needs fun and donations from philanthropists and institutions. That would go a long way in ensuring that the school continues to grow. Geetha Rao is a Bangalore - based journalist.- The ABCs of undoing knowledge, Kabir Jaithirtha, Humanscape, 01/08/1998, /eldoc/n00_/01aug98HUS6.pdf 

AT The Valley School, the Krishnamurti Foun-dation India (KFI)-run school in Bangalore, set on a lush green, 110-acre campus, the guiding principles are no reward, no punishment, no comparisons and no competition. Children from age six onwards are taught to value a questioning mind, develop skills in art, sculpture, pottery and dance as in curricular subjects. By Class 9, they are expected to take internal exams as they ready themselves for Class 10 and 12 exams. The parent-school interaction is uni-que: parents volunteer as part-time teachers in crafts, languages and art. Says director Satish Inamdar: "At KFI schools, we're still exploring an idea, to see if a human being can be brought up without fear, and in turn awa-ken the intelligence of a child and allow it to flower."
...Delhi-based Mirambika, an alternate school set up in 1981 with 57 students and now teaching some 135 children. Its motto is learning by asking questions. A free-progress school, Mirambika has no standard classes, just groups up to Level 8 and no uniforms or exams. Languages and mathematics are the only subjects taught in classrooms, the rest is learnt through project work. Teachers are referred to as Didis or Bhaiyas and serve as guides to help the children find their own space and process. Lesser students and eclectic learning tools have led to alternate education becoming a luxury that only those with means can aff-ord. At The Valley School, the annual fee of Rs 35,000 can be changed based on parents' income, a system of graded fees thateven CFL with a base fee of around Rs 30,000 a year follows. The idea is to attract a cross-section of students, a challenge other alternate schools also face. Says Nirmala Diaz, founding member and trustee of Sloka, the Hyderabad-based Waldorf School that like over 800 Waldorf schools globally follows the philosophy of Austrian educa-tionist and philosopher Rudolf Steiner: "We want to be accessible to middle-class families and still have a class strength of 25. Balancing our cash registers is always a problem." 

- Filling Unmet Needs, ARCHANA RAI, Outlook, 10/12/2001, /eldoc/n24_/10dec01out1.pdf 

 

Alternative Curriculum Schools

AT The Valley School, the Krishnamurti Foundation India (KFI)-run school in Bangalore, set on a lush green, 110-acre campus, the guiding principles are no reward, no punishment, no comparisons and no competition. Children from age six onwards are taught to value a questioning mind, develop skills in art, sculpture, pottery and dance as in curricular subjects. By Class 9, they are expected to take internal exams as they ready themselves for Class 10 and 12 exams. The parent-school interaction is uni-que: parents volunteer as part-time teachers in crafts, languages and art. Says director Satish Inamdar: "At KFI schools, we're still exploring an idea, to see if a human being can be brought up without fear, and in turn awa-ken the intelligence of a child and allow it to flower."
...Delhi-based Mirambika, an alternate school set up in 1981 with 57 students and now teaching some 135 children. Its motto is learning by asking questions. A free-progress school, Mirambika has no standard classes, just groups up to Level 8 and no uniforms or exams. Languages and mathematics are the only subjects taught in classrooms, the rest is learnt through project work. Teachers are referred to as Didis or Bhaiyas and serve as guides to help the children find their own space and process.
Lesser students and eclectic learning tools have led to alternate education becoming a luxury that only those with means can afford. At The Valley School, the annual fee of Rs 35,000 can be changed based on parents' income, a system of graded fees thateven CFL with a base fee of around Rs 30,000 a year follows. The idea is to attract a cross-section of students, a challenge other alternate schools also face. Says Nirmala Diaz, founding member and trustee of Sloka, the Hyderabad-based Waldorf School that like over 800 Waldorf schools globally follows the philosophy of Austrian educa-tionist and philosopher Rudolf Steiner: "We want to be accessible to middle-class families and still have a class strength of 25. Balancing our cash registers is always a problem."

- Filling Unmet Needs, ARCHANA RAI, Outlook, 10/12/2001, /eldoc/n24_/10dec01out1.pdf

KNB

 "It was equally clear that middle-class children needed the interaction with the poor if they were to grow up with an awareness and appreciation of the social reality in our country". Therefore, its founders decided, KNB would be a school where "Dalits would learn  alongside the elites".It happens in KNB nearly by the way, this mixing of children from disparate backgrounds, this offer of opportunity to those steadily denied it. Yet it is emphatically not by the way, but an important part of being at KNB. The proof is evident when you speak to the higher-caste students here. They are unable to see why there is, or was, or should be, any difference between them and their lower-caste friends. They are bewildered that this is an issue at all.

KNB fees are low. Even so, about a fifth of the students pay no tuition fee. Their books, uniforms, class trips and mid-day meals are also free. While raising the fees makes financial sense and some parents could certainly afford an increase, consider this from a 1996 report by the principal: "By raising fees, we would be in danger of alienating those lower middle-class people who are the backbone of our school and give it its distinctive character". How many other schools acquire a "distinctive character" from their poor students and are proud of it? How many other school principals aim to be distinct in this way? - School Of Thought, DILIP D'SOUZA, Times of India, 12/08/2003, /eldoc/n24_/12aug03toi1.html

Former students nostalgically remember the days of "Sahboj" when students and teachers prepared food in a community kitchen and ate together. A bulk of the raw material for the "Sahboj" meals came from the students' produce. Today the common meal concept still exists but all the raw material is purchased from outside. And naturally since money has to be spent for the meal, former students are no longer invited as freely as before. The Panchayat system has tak- en a beating too. Students were taught about the importance of exercising discretion and judge-ment when electing a represen-tative. Now the school sticks to the "house' system like other mainstream schools. Earlier, turn wise each student in the school had to compulsori-ly speak at the morning assembly. "Atm Bhava Prakshan" was designed to instill confidence in the student as no fixed  topic was set. "It had tremen-dous results on the student's personality and confidence," say teachers. But now each house selects its representative and the child is assigned to speak on a main topic. The principal, says, "The main transformation took place after the school was recognised. Books were introduced and modern aspects of ca-reer orientation emerged". - Experimental school falls prey to modernisation, CHANCHAL PAL CHAUHAN, Statesman, /eldoc/n24_/12oct01s1.pdf

Despite the boost given through various grants, concessions and reservations tribal education in India still remains a myth. While the government and NGOs come out with innovative programmes to bring tribals to the mainstream controversies on indigenous tribes and preserving cultures pose problems of different dimensions.

Literary classes in tribal colonies organised by governmental agencies and voluntary organisations have been going on for quite some time. But providing them the best possible infrastructure and learning situations in their natural settings without affecting their age old customs and practices is definitely a new experimentation. An attempt in this direction is Vivekananda Tribal Centre for Learning (VTCL) at Hosahalli near N-Begur in HD Kotte Taluk of Mysore district.
The school started in 1990 on a seven acre campus close to the Gundre range of Bandipur forests by the Vivekananda youth movement, Mysore is spread on 18 acres today accommodating a high school section, primary school section, tailoring institute, administrative section, three labs, library, spacious play grounds etc in the sylvan surroundings.- A school in the wild, P U ANTHONY, Deccan Herald, /eldoc/n24_/15apr04dch6.htm

EXCEPT during the nine months before he draws his first breath, no man manages his affairs as well as a tree does," George Bernard Shaw had once said. That is the ideology which landscape designer Vijaya Chakravarty has been trying to instill in the minds of young children, for the last three and a half years. Her commitment prompted her to return to the rudimentary, in association with the Sanjivani Deep School for the Paraplegic Foundation, Navi Mumbai.
The students at Sanjivani now connect with nature through the medium of gardening, taught the intricacies of growing different varieties of vegetables, flowers, in-door and outdoor plants, under various con-ditions and soil types. The unique alternative education is aimed at developing a child's agricultural skills. "Intelligence in children varies from one to another. Some might excel in a par-ticular field and others will have other incli-nations.  - Connecting with nature in school, Indian Express, 18/07/2002, /eldoc/n24_/18july02ie1.pdf 

Playhouse at 50, Bulbul Sharma, Seminar, 01/02/2005, /eldoc/n20a/01feb05SEM67.html

Where the mind is without fear, Amukta Mahapatra, Hindu, 11/01/2004, /eldoc/n30_/11jan04h1.html

The ABCs of undoing knowledge, Kabir Jaithirtha, Humanscape, 01/08/1998, /eldoc/n00_/01aug98HUS6.pdf

- Siddhrajsinhji and wife protect old 'subjects' from modern travails, AJAI PASRICHA, Outlook, 13/08/2001, /eldoc/n24_/13aug01out1.pdf

- School experiments new methods of education, Pioneer, 16/02/2000, /eldoc/n24_/16feb00pio1.pdf


Resistance to the spread of non-formal schools usually comes from parents themselves.
They insist that their children be 'toppers', even if that means subjecting them to a stressful, irrelevant and competitive educational system Arthy Muthanna Singh 

W hen I moved to Mumbai about two years ago, my primary concern was my son's schooling. Problem was, unlike most parents, I was looking for a non-formal school: a progressive one, if you like. In my naivete, I had actually imagined that I'd be spoilt for choice. After all, this was Mumbai, the big city, and I had come from a small town in Goa. I discovered soon enough that Mumbai had the dubious distinction of offering no choice at all in non-formal education, whereas practically every other metro in the coun-try did. During my quest for that elusive school, I spoke to many mothers. Strangely, most of them seemed quite satisfied with the schools their children attended. What was I making such a fuss about? I soon acquired the reputation of a paranoid mother ask-ing for too much. Paranoid, granted. But was I ask-ing for too much? I don't think so.
All I wanted was a school where my child would be treated as an indi-vidual. I wanted him to enjoy learn-ing, and not have the fear of exams and homework looming above him constantly. Was it too much to want to extend his childhood a wee bit further? I wanted him to have a teacher who could relate to him as a person, not as one of 40 mindless zombies. I cannot seriously believe that most parents are ac-tually happy with what their children have to go through every day in school. What do I mean by 'non-formal', I am asked every other day. It is easier to spell out what I don't want. I do not want competition. I do not want fear. I do not want 'dark sarcasm in the classroom'. (Thank you, Pink Floyd). I want the child to be left alone; to retain his individuality. I do not want him to become 'just another brick in the wall'. I attended a quasi-non-formal school in the Nilgiris, St. Hildas. By 'quasi' I mean that it was affiliated to the ICSE Board, but until we gave those final examinations, we en-joyed ourselves thoroughly.
A lot of music, theatre, sports, athletics. With the numbers in the class kept very low, indi-vidual attention from the teachers was possible, without be-coming a strain. It helped to have most of the students (about 90 per cent) and most of the teachers living on campus. What are now viewed as hobby classes were very much part of the curriculum there. Maybe my memory is clouded by nostal-gia for what my son cannot have, but the only time of stress I can remember was my final year at school: before the ex-aminations. There's still a question mark in my mind about examina-tions and whether they should be abolished altogether, but At the Saifee High School, every child is taught at an individual level what I am quite sure about is that children should start get-ting used to the idea of exams only around the age of 14. Before that, they must be left to pursue anything that takes their fancy. After all, how much of the algebra you learnt in school is of any use to you today? Unless you happen to be a mathematician, what is the relevance of the subject? My husband attended one of the first J Krishnamurti schools in Benaras.
One can safely say that this institution was the forerunner of most non-formal schools in India. What he re-members most fondly about the Raj ghat Besant school are the stress-free years of learning and the ample opportunities to pursue his own interest in Hindustani classical music. Unfortunately, non-formal schools are seen as elitest, pri-marily because the number of stu-dents in each class is kept low. As a result, the fees have to be high. Or do they? At the Chamraj High School in the Nilgiris, fees are just Rs 40 per month. This has been possible because the tea company pumps a percentage of its profits into the school. This non-formal school was set up to give the chil-dren of the labourers who worked on the tea plantation a chance to benefit from a progressive school.
The children in each class do not exceed 25, and wherever possible, there are two teachers to a class. Music and drama take up a large part of an average day. Every class brings out its own newspaper and topics like recycling and the geography of their immediate surroundings ensure that education has a rel-evance to their lives. When we lived in Goa, my son went to a playgroup called Watoto (which means 'child' in Swahili). He was three and because I did not have the courage to send him on his own, I'd go along everyday. Before long, I was asked to train on the job, and got into teaching full-time. The teacher-student ratio was 1:8. My son was exposed to painting, pottery, tree houses, games, animals and much more. The school was till the fourth standard. As far as possible, children were taught through projects and hands-on experience. There were no tests or homework.
The report card was like a statement of fact, about what had been done that academic year, and not how well or how badly it had been done. It was the kind of school that the children did not want to leave. It incorporated a bit of the Waldorf system, a bit of the Montessori system and a little of the J Krishnamurti system as well. We constantly had to reassure parents who had no yardstick to measure their child's progress by. Most of the parents' fears came from comparing their children with those from regular schools in areas like writing and numbers.

Toppers, at what cost?, Arthy Muthanna Singh, Humanscape, 01/08/1998, /eldoc/n00_/01aug98HUS3.pdf 





Alternative curriculum Schools    Former students nostalgically remember the days of "Sahboj" when students and teachers prepared food in a community kitchen and ate together. A bulk of the raw material for the "Sahboj" meals came from the students' produce. Today the common meal concept still exists but all the raw material is purchased from outside. And naturally since money has to be spent for the meal, former students are no longer invited as freely as before.
The Panchayat system has taken a beating too. Students were taught about the importance of exercising discretion and judge-ment when electing a represen-tative. Now the school sticks to the "house' system like other mainstream schools. Earlier, turn wise each student in the school had to compulsorily speak at the morning assem-bly. "Atm Bhava Prakshan" was designed to instill confi-dence in the student as no fixed  topic was set. "It had tremen-dous results on the student's personality and confidence," say teachers. But now each house selects its representative and the child is assigned to speak on a main topic. The principal, says, "The main transformation took place after the school was recognised. Books were intro-duced and modern aspects of ca-reer orientation emerged". 

- Experimental school falls prey to modernisation, CHANCHAL PAL CHAUHAN, Statesman, /eldoc/n24_/12oct01s1.pdf 

Alternative Curriculum Schools 
- Siddhrajsinhji and wife protect old 'subjects' from modern travails, AJAI PASRICHA, Outlook, 13/08/2001, /eldoc/n24_/13aug01out1.pdf 


Staff Reporter New Delhi THE VISION Valley School, in its preparation for the 21st century aims to remove the traditional sys-tems of education and introduce a new effective system based on scientific, modern, positive and practical principles and applica-tions. The school shall endeavor to attain its goals through excellent management, brilliant teaching staff, safe surroundings and an innovative system of education. Situated in the foothills of the Himalayas and two and half kilometre from Kashipur along the Kundeshwari road, the school is nestled in a quiet and picturesque ambience.
The campus is in perfect harmony with nature and the world famous tiger re-serve Corbett National Park is 30 kilometre away. Another popular tourist spot and hub of education in the country Nainital is also in close proximity. Kashipur is just 221km. from New Delhi and is easily accessible by road and rail.
The school aims at providing the pupils with an amicable en-vironment to horn their skills and in the process exercise their fundamental right for educa-tion. The outstanding feature of the school's academic programme shall be the novel idea of getting its students to perform well with-out having to unduly burden the parents in any way. It aims to install Indian tradi-tional values and a sense of pride in Indian culture and art in their pupils. At the same time, making them aware of the new streams of thought and enlightenment, so that they achieve a natural and practical synthesis between the two, enabling them to tackle all challenges in the life ahead. The school prepares its stu-dents for the examinations con-ducted by the GBSE, New Delhi. These examinations are taken at the end of the classes X and XII. The medium of instruction is English. The school is equipped with spacious buildings. It can also boast of some of the best facilities provided for sports and games, co-curricular activities of a varied nature, computer etc be-sides concentrating on academ-ic excellence as its priority.
The school has ideal potential for a good residential life for its pupils with the best facilities be-ing provided. The school lays great empha-sis on character building and dis-cipline. It expects parents to co-operate with the school in this crucial area of a child's devel-opment. The school management en-deavours to appoint well qualified and hard working teachers. The school generally does not endorse tuitions. Sri Satish Chandra Memorial Scholarship is awarded annual-ly to brilliant pupils of financial-ly weak parents. The new academic session be-gins in early April every year. The lower age limit for admission to nursery is 4 years as on March 31st of the year of joining school. Admission is strictly on the per-formance of the candidate in the entrance examination. An at-tested birth certificate, transfer and character certificate and passport size photographs are to be presented at the time of ad-mission. For further information con-tact: The Principal Vision Valley School, Kuan Khera, Kundeshwari Road, Kashipur-244713(UP). 

- School experiments new methods of education, Pioneer, 16/02/2000, /eldoc/n24_/16feb00pio1.pdf 

Alternative Curriculum SChools Tribal Education 
Despite the boost given through various grants, concessions and reservations tribal education in India still remains a myth. While the government and NGOs come out with innovative programmes to bring tribals to the mainstream controversies on indigenous tribes and preserving cultures pose problems of different dimensions.  Literary classes in tribal colonies organised by governmental agencies and voluntary organisations have been going on for quite some time. But providing them the best possible infrastructure and learning situations in their natural settings without affecting their age old customs and practices is definitely a new experimentation. An attempt in this direction is Vivekananda Tribal Centre for Learning (VTCL) at Hosahalli near N-Begur in HD Kotte Taluk of Mysore district. The school started in 1990 on a seven acre campus close to the Gundre range of Bandipur forests by the Vivekananda youth movement, Mysore is spread on 18 acres today accommodating a high school section, primary school section, tailoring institute, administrative section, three labs, library, spacious play grounds etc in the sylvan surroundings. 

- A school in the wild, P U ANTHONY, Deccan Herald, /eldoc/n24_/15apr04dch6.htm 

Teaching Methodology Alternative Curriculum Schools 
-Where the mind is without fear, Amukta Mahapatra, Hindu, 11/01/2004, /eldoc/n30_/11jan04h1.html 

Alternative Curriculum CShools Reality Education
The first half of the day is devoted to studies and the rest to skill training in carpentry, pottery, masonry, permaculture, herbal medicines, book binding and tailoring. It must also be one of the few places training children in Bhagotam, a local folk art form. Only children above nine years are admitted, many dropouts from government schools. There are no fees to be paid in this school, run by the Deccan Development Society (DDS), a non-government organisation working in this area (to conserve traditional crops and agro-bio-diversity), for the last 15 years. Before 1998, most children had never been to any school, according to the school administrator, Bhimsen Murthy. Even now, only 10 per cent may have attended school earlier. Many worked as labourers or helped their parents with housework, grazing or farming. So far, 63 students have appeared for their SSC examinations and over 40 have passed either in the first or the second attempt. A children's committee is involved in decision-making and every day, the general assembly is devoted to various subjects. The student's skills and knowledge are analysed during the admission test and, till the fourth level, no government textbooks are used. The teachers prepare the curriculum themselves and the children are taught formal subjects like the languages, mathematics, science and the social sciences from the fourth level only. 

- Education for a lifetime, MEENA MENON., Hindu, 13/01/2002, /eldoc/n30_/education_for_lifetime.html 

Alternative Curriculum Schools 
- Playhouse at 50, Bulbul Sharma, Seminar, 01/02/2005, ./eldoc/n20a/01feb05SEM67.html

But it could have worked, some teachers believe, if adequate preparations had been made by Shwetha E George I n a dilapidated building sporting the board 'Govern-ment High School' in Alwaye, a prominent town in Ernakulam District, a few Class One students are trying to learn the tables of seven by counting the seeds of the manjadi plant. A few others are reading aloud an 'adukkalapaattu' and a 'bhakshanapattu' (songs on kitchen vessels and food) from charts clipped to a rope tied across the classroom. No text-books and no scribbling down mean-ingless information. The noise is deafening, the scene pure chaos. 'The kids have never enjoyed learning better," says their teacher, "but an official order to cease this kind of teaching could come any day now." This school is one of the many government-aided schools in Kerala that has undergone a curriculum revision under the DPEP (District Primary Education Programme) intro-duced by the Left government in the early nineties. A child-centred form of education that was intended to bring out total involvement of the child in the learning process, DPEP was completely alternative in its method.
The concept was borne at the international seminar on education in Thailand in 1990 in which participating countries decided that edu-cation must be provided to everyone by 2000. The Central Advisory Board of Education approved the plan and de-cided to implement it with funds from World Bank (40 crores for each selected district) in 150 districts in India, six of them falling within Kerala state itself. Kasargod, Wayanad, Malappuram, Trivandrum, Palakkad and Idukki. Fearing that differences might crop up between DPEP and non-DPEP districts, the SCERT therefore agreed for a total curriculum revision in all government schools in Kerala. The need for an alternative system was never greater in the state.

The National Institute of Education Planning and Administration's report on educational standards stated that although Kerala rated high in class quantity, it ranked only 18th in terms of the reading, writing and mathematical ca-pacity of the student. In fact, for every 100 students admit-ted into primary schools, only 70 per cent reached the 10th grade and only 14 per cent of them passed the state examination without moderation. The Yashpal Committee report on primary education was also an eye-opener. "Joyless learning — that was what he discovered about the education system in our country," says Jayasree, a government school teacher in Ernakulam. Teach-ing, he said, was made a product-oriented process in which getting the right answer proved a child's competency. "So all he needed was a good memory. His inherent skills were unnoticed. Teachers played the dominant role and spoon-feeding went on for generations." Therefore, the main objective of DPEP was to focus on each child's interests and how he learns instead of what he learns, reduce his work load (school bag should not weigh more than four kilos), increase the quality of education and teachers and reduce the number of drop-outs. Therefore, text books were changed. Written content was minimised. Drawing, colouring, group activities, field trips and reading comers in classrooms were the new curricu-lum. Teachers were trained in batches by expert groups. Monitoring agencies comprising of higher-grade teachers and jilla officers toured schools to extend support and tech-nical tips. But it bombed. In just the fourth year of its implementation, the DPEP lost the complete faith of the public and was labelled the greatest fiasco of the Left government. Parents began com-plaining that their wards were not being given any written homework. They could not fathom how composing a song on kitchen vessels would help these kids pass the Tenth Board Exam. Anti-Left parties maintained that 'alternative educa-tion methods' are brainless schemes funded by the World Bank to keep backward countries more backward. The en-tertainment industry made films and street theatres showcasing the classrooms as venues of absolute mayhem, where kids use neither text books nor school bags. So much so that the text-books for the eighth graders have not arrived yet. But the newly-elected Con-gress government has not officially abolished the scheme either.

In effect, however, schools are re-verting to conventional teaching. What really went wrong? "It was an excellent scheme. But it was imple-mented without any proper planning," says Chacko PI, a teacher in CMS High School in Pallom. "No Students of 'The Choice' school in Kochi awareness campaigns prior to implementation." The whole scheme was decided, planned and implemented within just six years. Although teachers' training started immediately, nothing was done about existing school infrastructure.
"Forget better labora-tories, not even a file was bought." Scrap books, story books, performance records, semi-nars and exhibitions are the must-haves of an alternative teaching system. "A DPEP-based Geography text-book re-quires every student to have a map of India and a globe of their own because these are mostly learn-by-yourself meth-ods. How can a government school that has about 60 stu-dents in each primary class have that many maps to pro-vide? " What happened to the funds, neither the government nor the teaching fraternity has an answer. Even the 'road-side classes' that were conducted to convince the public of the need for an alternative system came too late in the day. By then criticism had mounted and the situation was irre-versible. In addition, this kind of teaching calls for double effort from the teachers. They must be resourceful and in-novative. "For instance, 'three and two make five' is a standard teaching method," says Jayasree. "But in DPEP-based teach-ing, the child is given the result 'five' and asked how many ways he can arrive at that answer. So he calculates 'ten mi-nus five', 'four plus one' and gets a better grasp of what addition is all about." enacting their chapter on Kashmir The evaluation system under the DPEP was also a com-plicated one.

In addi-tion to a Q and A form, a student is also sub-jected to various cur-riculum statements. For example, the Eng-lish- language teacher has to find out if he reads story-books, asks for the meaning of unfamiliar words, reads titles, headlines, signals, etc. As for 'Writing', is he able to write down names of his classmates, lists of things he uses daily, messages on greeting cards and so on? Not all teachers are willing to do that extra work. "It was a very good scheme while it lasted," says Molly Cyril, principal of one of Kerala's most exclusive private schools, The Choice, in Ernakulam. In private schools where teachers are a law unto themselves, implementing an alter-native mode of teaching is much easier.

No dearth of money and no unions to root for rights, these schools arrange field trips, organize exhibitions, put up a fashion show to teach about textile industry, plant paddy crops in the backyard during their social science period and cook bhelpuri and chaat inside the classroom for their chapter on Mumbai. However, a government scheme cannot survive without public support. "And we lost it because we rushed headlong into it" says Chacko. "Most teachers were only beginning to get the feel of it. Given a second chance, we can still make it work." With parents still clammering for ranks, a political system that will continue to interfere and a demor-alised education department, can they, really? Some names have been changed to protect identities of the officers of the education department. Shwetha E George is a freelance journalist who focuses on development issues in Kerala. She can be contacted at shwethavarghese@rediffmail.com
Continued from page 14 In the meanwhile, the girls shared their experiences with traders, shopkeepers and sometimes, even their teachers touching their hands deliberately.
This was an important thread to explore. This complex phenomena however, could not be dealt with during the short inter-action. There was some discussion around their aspirations and the basic requirements to achieve them. How far it is acceptable/agreeable for them to continue their parents' occupations was discussed. It was important to stress that there were very few options directly after the seventh standard. They were given information about the three streams in college, and what it takes to become a nurse, teacher, doctor, lawyer, etc. in response to their queries. They felt reassured that Open Universities make it possi-ble for school dropouts to catch up with education later. Vacha is in the process of modifying these modules further. They welcome further discussions and insights at vacha@vsnl.com or at Municipal School, Ground Floor, Tank Lane, Santacruz (w) Mumbai- 400054.

- Off the beaten track, Shwetha E George, Humanscape, 01/01/2002, /eldoc/n00_/01jan02HUS2.pdf

By Shushmita Dutt
The assumptions at the beginning of India's struggle for achieving Universalisation of Elementary Education (UEE) were that universal elementary education wasn't possible because there weren't enough schools. These as-sumptions, however, were soon questioned by educationists, because they did not take into account the socio-economic realities of the country. It was not long before it became clear that the question of enrolment in schools was not merely a question of supply of schools. In spite of the manifold growth of the formal school network in the post-Independ-ence era, it has not been possible to draw all eligible children in the age group of 6-14 into school, nor even to retain all those who were initially enrolled. The reality in many Indian families is that children work in the fields with their parents, babysit younger siblings so that mothers can work for wages, take on other household respon-sibilities or themselves work for wages. The educational sys-tem had to take this reality into account.
The system of Non-formal Education (NFE) was conceived in 1978 to meet the requirements of those children who were unable to attend formal schools. The process was meant to be part of a microplanning strategy, to reach out to every family and every child, and involve them in the process of education. The ground realities, however, have proved that without absolute commitment and large-scale human resource input, the very characteristics which should have made NFE attrac-tive have worked against it flexibility, localisation and need-specific strategies have often been used as loopholes to offer sub-standard education. Today it is becoming increasingly clear that the Indian educational system requires more than just an expansion of the school system and an inclusion of the NFE system if it is to be set right. It is also being accepted that without a parallel growth in economic activity and rise of other social develop-ment indicators, the true benefits of education will not reach the masses.
Gradual disillusionment with the existing educational conditions has given rise to a concern that the very educational paradigm accepted by India may be unsuited to a large majority of its people. In an attempt to tailor the de-livery system and content to the specific needs of various sections, there have been some small-scale experiments with educational structures, curricula, teaching strategies, teacher training, evaluation and certification, the teaching calendar and management. The term 'Alternative School' is finding its way into the educational lexicon and beginning to gain respectability. The exact connotation of the term does not seem to have been frozen yet, and attempts are still on to find an educational paradigm which may be satisfactorily pigeon-holed under 'Alternative School'.
The NCERT concept paper on NFE and Alternative Schools (AS) defines AS as a system which has a delivery mechanism distinct from formal schools and NFE. It has been conceived as transacting the same curricu-lum and textual material as in the formal system but outside the structure. But the concept paper seems to further indi-cate that it is essentially the degree of flexibility in curricu-lum design and teaching-learning approach that makes the difference between the formal and the AS. The paper goes on to identify the Open School and Shiksha Karmi schools as examples of AS. Some educationists struggling to explain what is meant by alternative schools have pointed to it being more economical in that it may be situated in places and for numbers where it is not feasible to have a formal school. (Then is it a NFE centre under another name?) Others claim that alternative schools have the qualities of being child-friendly and attrac-tive. (What! Isn't the ultimate aim of a formal school the same?)
As is evident, the exact connotation of the term is yet to emerge. Or perhaps it is one of those chameleon terms which mean many things to many men. The need for alternative schools There still remain some fundamental questions that must be clarified with regard to alternative schools. The first of which is: why do we need them? In answer to that question it may be said that there is a large component of children who have not found the educa-tion presently on offer to be sufficiently meaningful. A study undertaken by Mode for UNICEF in five states of India as recently as 1995 indicates that the vast majority of students attending formal government schools, their parents, as well as students who have dropped out and their parents, seem to hold unfavourable impressions of school. The same study records that the majority of SC/ST students and parents feel that only rich or high-caste families benefit from education.
The perceived value of education among children who have never enrolled and their parents is also very low. Prof Yashpal in the National Advisory Committee Report 1992 {Learning Without Burden) has commented upon those who refused to compromise with non-comprehensibility and preferred to drop out rather than submit to years of rote learn-ing without understanding. Some interesting information is available from the National Sample Survey, 1986-87, regard-ing non-enrolment and drop-outs. Nearly 30 per cent of those.

HUMANSCAPE • AUGUST 1998 • 11 The ideal alternative schoolteacher needs to be far more resourceful and innovative than the teacher in a formal school He should be able to draw upon the local myths, legends, ethno-medicine, history and heroes and relate the curriculum to local environmental and socio-economic needs, hopes and aspirations. surveyed, both in the rural and urban areas, gave the reason for non-enrolment as 'Not Interested'. A larger portion of the never- enrolled females gave this answer than did the males 33.3 per cent as against 26.5 per cent. This could be interpreted as a demand-side constraint to enrolment.
However, some scholars have dug deeper and interpreted it as a supply-side constraint rooted in poor schooling facili-ties (water, separate toilets) and quality of education (cur-riculum content, essential learning). This point becomes more relevant when it is considered that relevant curriculum content should motivate students to complete their education and utilise their schooling to better their quality of life. In the same survey, 16.3 per cent of rural and 20.3 per cent of urban dropouts cited 'Failure to Pass Exams' as reasons for drop-ping out. Again, it would have to be clarified whether this is a demand-side constraint or a supply-side constraint because of irrelevance of curriculum content and poor quality of edu-cation or both. Then there is the question of the curriculum for alternative schools: the need or otherwise for a desegregated, contextual and section-specific curriculum. Whereas some argue strongly for a curriculum that answers specific needs and is relevant to their lives, others see this as a perpetuation of social division.
While the effects of the first suggestions might become visible immediately in higher enrolments and reten-tion, the effects of the latter might be evident in the longer term when corrective measures will be too late. Alternative schools would need to consider the above issues very care-fully. The perfect AS teacher Those who hold a brief for AS argue that the formal system is monolithic and mass-oriented, incapable of recognising indi-vidual needs and small but im-portant differences between in-dividuals. Formal schools are part of an enormous whole; in order to exist they have to adopt common curricula and instruc-tional materials.
Even the pool of teachers must be clones as far as possible, interchangeable and inter-transfer able, with approxi-mately the same qualifications and training. Wittingly or not, the result is a homogenisation of a heterogeneous, diverse popu-lation. AS hopes to be responsive enough to desegregated needs, and provide the kind of school-ing that children from various sub-sections of society (pres-ently out of school) may relate to. The ideal AS teacher, even if less academically qualified than the formal school teacher (as in some AS experiments currently under way), would need to be far more resourceful and innovative while clearly keeping the goal of AS in mind if he/she is to be suc-cessful. He/she should be able to draw upon the local cul-ture (myths, legends, ethno-medicine, history, heroes) in the course of teaching and relate the curriculum to local environ-mental and socio-economic needs, hopes and aspirations. Such a teacher would almost certainly need to be local. The question of control and certification The extent of decentralisation indicated by the above ex-pectation would argue for individual, evolving systems cov-ering perhaps one agro-climatic or cultural zone. They may be local, specific systems built upon a single prototype.
Or they may be absolutely individual systems loosely connected to other such systems. When considering any individualistic system it becomes the responsibility of the planners to en-sure that individuals within one system do not lose their abil-ity to reach out to another. The importance of cross-fertilisation of ideas and innovations depends on this. And so does the ability to access information, technology and even finan-cial support from the mainstream. Finally, the AS student has the right to expect that his/her education will be recognized by other parallel systems of education and allow the option of continuing education in such other systems.
The question of a recognized form of certification, therefore, becomes important. After AS, what? So far there has been little serious thought given to adopt-ing AS beyond the elementary level. Is it the aim of alterna-tive schools to facilitate children who have dropped out or never been to school to make up for lost time and join the mainstream at some point? Or does it advocate that AS stu-dents accept elementary schooling as sufficient for their needs? Or again, does the alternative system of education intend to provide alternatives to all levels of education? The entire issue of evaluation and certification is intertwined with this and would need to be sorted out. If alternative schooling is ultimately going to keep the option of mainstreaming open for its students, it will perforce have to toe some formal school lines. The question then is, how much and which ones? Emerging issues of concern With any innovation or experiment there are certain legiti-mate concerns which require thought.
Some of these are:
• Does AS fulfil its requirement of attracting previously non-enrolled children?
• How does the quality of education compare with what is available in formal schools?
• Does AS offer anything not available in formal schools? Motivation, interest, joy in learning, greater confidence, lead-ership training, environmental awareness, a sense of respon-sibility towards the community, ownership?
• What level of acceptability does AS have vis-a-vis em-ployment, higher education and mainstreaming? How ac-ceptable is the AS certification in other districts, other states?
• Are AS structures sustainable? Can they be replicated?
• Is the system of evaluation of pupil attainment effective?
• Does the low academic qualification of AS teachers af-fect pupil attainment and quality of teaching?
• Does the community continue to support and sustain AS in the long run? Does AS meet community aspirations? Other areas that need in-depth, longitudinal study are:
• The coverage and access of the AS network: can AS reach all/some/most of the unreached?
• The management structures and processes of AS: are these efficient, sustainable, vibrant, able to change as per need?
• Profile of the target population: what socio-economic, cultural, educational backgrounds do the students and par-ents come from?
• The perception of the target population about AS, its value, its ability to fulfil their aspirations.
• The participation and ownership/involvement of the com-munity with the scheme, its planning and functioning.
• The teacher profile and training: how does it answer AS needs?
• The teachers' and other officials' perception of AS func-tioning.
• The budgetary aspect and unit cost per child per se as well as compared with other systems.
• The curriculum and instructional materials.
• The AS calendar
• The retention and dropout rates of students
• The profile of out-of-school children in the catchment area of the AS
• Causal factors for non-enrolment of above group
• The classroom processes and transactions
• The learning achievement of the students.

A detailed study and review of some presently ongoing experiments on evolv-ing alternative systems of education is of crucial importance at this juncture in India's attempt to meet the goals of UEE. Many of the questions posed above would perhaps be re-solved. Answers to all questions may not be available from one experiment — it is more than possible that findings from a number of such small-scale experiments will need to be collated for a meaningful learning experience to take place. One such experiment, the Shiksha Karmi Schools under Lok Jumbish in Rajasthan, which has been ongoing for some years now has already been studied and evaluated at great length. Some subsequent experiments have also drawn upon the experience gathered there.
It is now required that other experiments (AS under District Primary Education Pro-gramme or DPEP may be studied in-depth as there has been substantial progress in implementing AS) be documented in the same manner so that an eventual sharing may take place. It would be interesting to see how the existing AS systems ultimately resolve such problems as certification and evalua-tion. These experiments will also provide important insights into problems that might occur with regard to the function-ing and sustainability of a comparatively large network.
References
1 Ambasht, N.K. (1996) Non Formal Education and alternative School-ing: A Conceptual Paper. NCERT.
2 Dev Indra, (1994) External Evaluation Report on the Non Formal Education Programme in the Chhatisgarh region ofMadhya Pradesh : Final Report. SCERT. Bhopal.
3 Naik, Chitra (1985) Developing Non Formal Primary Education -A Rewarding Experience. Indian Institute of Education. Pune.
4NCERT. (1996). Capacity'Building for Non-Formal Education 1988- 96: A Report on the Activities and Programme of the Dept of Education and Non Formal Education and Alternative Schooling.
5 Shukla, Subir, 1996. Theme Paper on Alternative Schools. Unpub-lished Paper. Educational Consultants India Limited. 6 World Bank Report No. 15756. (1996). Indian Primary Education: Achievements and Challanges. Shushmita Dutt is a Bhopal-based writer. 

- Why India needs alternative schooling, Shushmita Dutt, Humanscape, 01/08/1998, /eldoc/n00_/01aug98HUS2.pdf 

The present system of education is devoid of our rich cultural heritage. The erstwhile gurukula system aimed at making the pupil a complete man, inculcating moral and ethical values in him. E ver since we deviated from our age-old gurukula system which was value-based, ethical and moral, our educational system took a destructive turn. The advent of the British and their necessity to have clerks, who would be machine-like, paved the way for Lord Macaulay's system of education which unfortunately is still in vogue. This sys-'tem is devoid of our rich cultural herit-age which aims at making the pupil a complete man, inculcat-ing moral and ethical values. It is sad to note that the gurukula system of education which is the backbone of a country's civili-sation is considered to be unpro-ductive by our people's repre-sentatives in Parliament. To a Government whose aim is result (concrete and material) oriented, culture and ethics- oriented edu-cation appears to be unimpor-tant. An educated person is ex-pected to be of clean habits, pleasing manners law-abiding, kind-hearted, unselfish, soft spoken and of helping nature. Education is useless if the "edu-cated people" are otherwise.
The need of the hour is education based on ethics.
The three fold aim of value-based education ought to be:
• Problem-facing capacity
• Problem-solving capacity and
• Large-heartedness and serv-ice while solving the problems which are at physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual levels.
Only a person of ethical excellence can be of righteous help to humanity. Morality is expected to ensure ethics. —HI Dr K Subrahmanyam, the principal of Vivekananda College at TiruvedaKam, near Madurai and author of Values in Education. 10 The former is the code of conduct and the latter is the purity of character. The present educational system is not directed towards or based on ethics.
The first and foremost reason for this is the madness for materialism and the lure of sense pleasure which are unchecked by strin-gent laws and uncontrolled by society for want of inspiring models. Education ought to be a mission. But it has ceased to be even a duty and in recent times has become a business. All the deterioration is due to weakness for wealth and luxury at the cost of love of humanity. The three-fold functioning of the educational activity ie — spot out the talent, train it to perfection and direct it towards the able service to humanity — therefore is jeopardised. Even those who need education most for earning a liveli-hood are affected due to profiteering in education. Money-making and mission-ary service do not go hand in hand.
However, without inconveniencing fi-nancial viability, unbiased meritocracy can very well be maintained, if only the institution builders can put up with a few teething troubles. There are philan-thropists who are willing to fund insti-tutions which stand on solid principles. Often, official interference is high-lighted as a hindrance for im-parting education based on eth-ics. But in practice it is found that there will be official inter-ference, only when the thrust on ethics is absent in education. There are institutions, though few in number, which are to-tally free from official interfer-ence simply because of their meticulous adherence to sound principles.
Character is strength, not weakness. And one needs to be strong to be of character. Then the question will be whether we can ensure good character by introducing academic courses in ethics. Courses on moral science and ethics will only be a mockery if they are not conducted by peo-ple of character and conviction. Parents, teachers and elders in society have to set an example. Else, all efforts to inculcate eth-ics in the classroom will be a waste. Only a revolution from the youth can set society right. That day is not far off. The youngsters are fed up with bad models. The awakening is sure to come. The unmotivated, the ill-motivated, the adversely motivated and the demotivated teachers are the greatest en-emies to the very citadels of education. And good teachers are not only few, but even they are bullied by the bad. Unless society learns to respect a good teacher of ethics and provides protection, there is no stimulus to sustain integrity.
 
- Towards Unbiased Meritocracy, K Subrahmanyam, Humanscape, 01/01/1998, /eldoc/n00_/01jan98HUS.pdf 

Rammohan Roy and Mahatma Gandhi are as important to us as the spiritual insights of Ramakrishna Paramahamsa and Vivekananda. Alternative schools which have opted out of the rat race of marks and percentages, and which deal with much smaller numbers of students lay great emphasis on allowing the individuality of each child to flower. Is our child flowering in a class of 40, we may wonder. There are no simple yardsticks to judge this. But its worthwhile remembering that individual achievement, individual striving for perfection and individual salvation, are all taken as givens in our culture. At the same time it is automatically assumed that behind this individual success lies a self discipline based on deprivation and self control. Indeed, this is what reinforces our link with other Asian cultures and separates us from the self-gratification seeking cultures of the West.

Beyond a point, individualism and self direction may bring children in conflict with the atmosphere that prevails in their homes. A more realistic appreciation of the individual child, which is rooted in the Indian cultural ethos, and which is a continuation of the structures children are familiar with at home, can be found in one such school in Madras. Started in 1957, the school still has a strong student-teacher relationship. There is an effort made at all levels to draw out every child in a class. Teachers are advised to look for and accept 36 interpretations of a poem, rather than impose a single version of their own. The school does not label children as bright children or 'slow' learners. Talking about children who do better as adults than in their school years, the school's policy says "If on the T O the stress and strain we already feel in dealing with our lives in these times has been added a new anxiety. Are our children being crushed and overburdened in the school system? Amongst the babel of voices talking loudly about exam results, tuitions, aggregates and percentages, there is a distinct murmur that says, "Let me find an alternative education for my child, somewhere where the music in her/him will not be stilled; where she/he will grow to the best of her/his capacity.

To fulfil the needs of this small, but growing section of parents, a number of schools have started in the last few years, which claim to care more for the child than the system, and have put the needs of the child before that of Examination Boards. The philosophy behind these schools, and the success they have achieved in their stated goals, have escaped analysis or question because they are too recent to be fairly evaluated.
Nevertheless, the very existence of such alternative schools has opened up a Pandora's Box for the conscientious parent. If your child is an a traditional school where the three 'r's are still being taught, you may begin to wonder 'Am I doing my best for my child? Shouldn't she/he be in A, B or C where she/he could be realising her/his true worth? In a country where State Education is confined to either Corporation Schools or the relatively inaccessible Kendriya Vidyalayas or Navodaya Vidyalayas, the vast majority of middle class parents seek a private education for their child. Most either choose a school run by missionaries or the Church or by a more recent private trust. These schools follow the curriculum of State or Central Board and seem to us in form and content to be not very different from the schools we studied in twenty years back. From here the cosy world of the alternative school looks not only desirable, but also important for our child. But is it really so?
Consider the following: Alternative schools are often, though not always, based on the vision and philosophy of a great individual. This may be Sri Aurobindo, J. Krishnamurthi, Maria Montessori or another distinguished philosopher or educationist. Approaching these schools for admission, parents are often submitted to a scrutiny to evaluate if they are able to appreciate this vision. Not only is this situation fraught with possibilities for their intimidation, it also sometimes marks the beginning of another education for the parent/s. Leaving behind their degrees, they must now learn anew what is right for their child, straight from the vision of the schools inspiration. Apart from the disadvantage it puts us at as parents, do we really want the education of our child to be defined or confined by the views of an individual?

By now we have experienced enough life to know that the lessons we learnt from social reformers and crusaders like Raja Rammohan Roy and Mahatma Gandhi are as important to us as the spiritual insights of Ramakrishna Paramahamsa and Vivekananda. Alternative schools which have opted out of the rat race of marks and percentages, and which deal with much smaller numbers of students lay great emphasis on allowing the individuality of each child to flower. Is our child flowering in a class of 40, we may wonder. There are no simple yardsticks to judge this. But its worthwhile remembering that individual achievement, individual striving for perfection and individual salvation, are all taken as givens in our culture. At the same time it is automatically assumed that behind this individual success lies a self discipline based on deprivation and self control.
Indeed, this is what reinforces our link with other Asian cultures and separates us from the self-gratification seeking cultures of the West. Beyond a point, individualism and self direction may bring children in conflict with the atmosphere that prevails in their homes. A more realistic appreciation of the individual child, which is rooted in the Indian cultural ethos, and which is a continuation of the structures children are familiar with at home, can be found in one such school in Madras. Started in 1957, the school still has a strong student-teacher relationship. There is an effort made at all levels to draw out every child in a class. Teachers are advised to look for and accept 36 interpretations of a poem, rather than impose a single version of their own. The school does not label children as bright children or 'slow' learners. Talking about children who do better as adults than in their school years, the school's policy says "If on the T O the stress and strain we already feel in dealing with our lives in these times has been added a new anxiety. Are our children being crushed and overburdened in the school system?

Amongst the babel of voices talking loudly about exam results, tuitions, aggregates and percentages, there is a distinct murmur that says, "Let me find an alternative education for my child, somewhere where the music in her/him will not be stilled; where she/he will grow to the best of her/his capacity. To fulfil the needs of this small, but growing section of parents, a number of schools have started in the last few years, which claim to care more for the child than the system, and have put the needs of the child before that of Examination Boards. The philosophy behind these schools, and the success they have achieved in their stated goals, have escaped analysis or question because they are too recent to be fairly evaluated. Nevertheless, the very existence of such alternative schools has opened up a Pandora's Box for the conscientious parent. If your child is an a traditional school where the three 'r's are still being taught, you may begin to wonder 'Am I doing my best for my child? Shouldn't she/he be in A, B or C where she/he could be realising her/his true worth? In a country where State Education is confined to either Corporation Schools or the relatively inaccessible Kendriya Vidyalayas or Navodaya Vidyalayas, the vast majority of middle class parents seek a private education for their child. Most either choose a school run by missionaries or the Church or by a more recent private trust. These schools follow the curriculum of State or Central Board and seem to us in form and content to be not very different from the schools we studied in twenty years back. From here the cosy world of the alternative school looks not only desirable, but also important for our child. But is it really so?

Consider the following: Alternative schools are often, though not always, based on the vision and philosophy of a great individual. This may be Sri Aurobindo, J. Krishnamurthi, Maria Montessori or another distinguished philosopher or educationist. grounds that such late bloomers may spoil our results, we were to weed out and then claim great results we would be doing injustice to the child." This integration of children of different ability and temperament without hindering them is apparent in other areas too. For the last several years, it has had hearing impaired and some vision impaired children studying at the same level with others of their age. No longer boxed and labeled, these children can be seen performing as well as the rest. Although exams are not introduced till class VI, there is continuous assessment of classwork and surprise tests which are graded, not marked. Appreciation for good performance comes in the form of a star or a clap from one's class mates. A typical student of this school girl or boy, looks at you curiously, with the uninhibited gaze and the slightly scruffy look that proclaims how comfortable she or he is with herself or himself. Compare this with the world of the alternative school, where the last word on what your child is, and how he or she should be treated, has already been laid down by a higher, unquestionable authority. The child from any of the mainstream schools will fall into the rough and tumble of adult life as an extension of his school environment. The child from the alternative school may occasionally find even meeting his peers from other schools a difficult prospect. Don't blame him then, it's not his fault.

From the beginning, from the way his school talks about itself, from the way his teachers talk to his parents, he has learnt to think of his school as better and different and other schools as structured — therefore not as good. He imbibes this vicarious cynicism about the education system, and other schools especially, without experiencing any of its ills. Is it really healthy, or safe, for children to grow up believing that others differently placed from themselves are not as good/as creative/as fortunate as themselves? In the ultimate analysis, we must remember that few of us can afford the option of the alternative school. All of us who are dissatisfied with the overburdened school system may not even be able to find or afford an option. However that is no reason to despair. Just as we must press for reforms in the exam oriented education system, we must simultaneously counter the more harmful effects of schooling on our children. This simply involves being tuned in to their feelings and ideas sufficiently to know when they are sad or happy, or confused. In our lives today, sharing our feelings with our children, spending leisure time with them, taking time out to read to them or listen to them may be difficult. But it may also be the only thing we can do to ensure that they become problem solving adults — not programmed ones.

- Appreciating the individual child, Sharada Bail, The Hindu, 5/09/1993,
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Reports

1. - Japanese Free Schools and Tokyo Shure, Tokyo Shure, 01/01/2000, R.N21.28

2. Redesigning the Elementary School - Multilevel Perspectives From Rishi Valley, Rishi Valley Education             Centre, R.N21.34

3. - Pacha Saale - The Green School, Deccan Development Society, 01/01/1994, R.N30.8

4. - Prayas - Experiences in Partnership - Vigyan Ashram, Singh, Manju, CAPART, R.N30.7

5. Different Approaches for Achieving EFA - Indian Experience, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, 01/01/2003, R.N00.41 pg 83, 196-198

6. Public Report on Basic Education in India, Oxford University Press, 01/01/1999, N21.P.1, 95-113 Ch 8

7.
After Deschooling What?, Illich, Ivan, Writers & Readers Pub Coop, 1973, R.N20.1

8. . Alternative Education: Re-Contextualizing Theory and Praxis, ARENA, 1996, R.N24.4


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Books:

1. - Summerhill, Neill, A.S., Penguin Books, 01/01/1926, B.N24.N1

2. - Totto-Chan, Kuroyanagi, Tetsuko, B.N24.K1

3. - Life Lines, Gribble, David, Libertarian Education, 01/01/2004, B.N00.G3

4. - Real Education Varieties of Freedom, Gribble David, Libertarian Education, 01/01/1998, B.N00.G2
 
5. - Divasvapna: An Educator's Reverie, Badheka, Gijubhai, National Book Trust, 01/01/1995, B.N00.B13

6. Getting Children Back to School - Case Studies in Primary Education, Ramachandran, Vimala, Sage Publications India Pvt. Ltd. 01/01/2003, B.N21.R2, - “Digantar: Concepts in practice” Jain, Mathur, Sharma, Ch 7 p.g. 249-289

7. Letter to a Teacher By the School of Barbiana, Rossi, Nora, Sahitya Chayan, 01/04/1992, B.N90.R1

8. End of Education, The: Redefining the Value of School, Postman, Neil, 1995, B.N00.P3

9. Assessment, Schools and Society, Broadfoot, Patricia, Methuen & Co. Ltd., 1979, B.N00.B12

10. Underachieving School, The, Holt, John, Penguin Books, 1970, B.N00.H9

11. School That I'd Like, The, Blishen, Edward (Ed), Penguin Books, 1969, B.N00.B14

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Reports:

1. Pluralistic Learning, Hecht, Yaacov, , R.N21.42

2. - Language Learning in Rishivalley Multigrade schools, Y Padmanabha Rao, Learning conference 2004, MHRD and Azim Premji foundation- Teaching Methodology Alternative Curriculum Schools, R.N21.24

3. - Revival Alternatives in education, January 11-13 2003, Bangalore, .N24 (put CED Code)

4. - Network Meeting 10, CFL, Vardanahalli, November 9-11, 2002, R.N24- Alternative thought/ curriculum school (put ced code)
5. Between Love, Domination and Reason: Civic Education and its ‘Others’ in Central India, Amman Madan pg 170, Education Dialogue, B.N00.C7



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Websites:

http://www.isec2000.org.uk/abstracts/papers_d/dutt_1.htm  (inclusive Education)
http://www.servintfree.net/~aidmn-ejournal/publications/2001-04/Avehi.html
http://www.ashoka.org/fellows/viewprofile3.cfm?reid=144944
http://prayatna.typepad.com/education/alternative_education/
http://www.languageinindia.com/junjulaug2001/school.html
http://www.indictrans.org/Articles/English/article_src/Edu/Educationalstrategies.html
http://www.un.org.in/JANSHALA/octber98/issues.htm
http://www.indiatogether.org/stories/lilstars.htm
www.alternativeeducationindia.net
www.auroville.org
www.cfledu.org
www.schoolriverside.com
www.seedschool.net
www.kidken.net
www.kraetzae.de
www.sudbury.de
www.educationrevolution.org
www.bigschool.or.kr
www.currambena.nsw.edu.au
www.playmountain.org
www.jajaschool.net
www.absolsoftec.com
www.workingchild.org
www.sudval.org
www.freedomtolearn.co.za
www.bicusa.org
www.karmmarg.org
www.abacusnow.com
www.f2foundation.org
www.ncacs.org
www.phoenixeducation.co.uk
www.activelearning.or.kr
www.lumiar.org.br
www.kreedagames.com
www.shure.or.jp
www.democratic-edu.org
www.pathsoflearning.org
www.changemakers.org
www.ashanet.org/seattle/proj/LearningNetworkInitiatives.htm
asha-learning@yahoogroups.com
www.creatinglearningcommunities.org
www.aera.net/meeting/am2001/
www.pathsoflearning.net
www.pathsoflearning.org/library/intro2000.cfm
www.vidyaonline.net
www.changemakers.net

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Audiotapes:

1. Homeschooling- The Raghavans of Anugriha, International Democratic Education Conference, 4-13 December 2005, Bhubaneswar, Orissa, Tape 3 (4), N24

2. Alternative Curriculum Schools, Education philosophy, Reality Education
- Taleemnet and Abhivyakti’s- ‘Path Breakers in Education’ Meeting, 10-13 February 2005, Valpoi, Goa, Tape 8 (6) N24

3. Democratic Education, principles and practices, Yaacov Hecht, Institute of democratic education, Hadera, Israel, International Democratic Education Conference, 4-13 December 2005, Bhubaneswar, Orissa, Tape 3 (2, side B), N24 report available