Bhalopahar Receives Telegraph School Award
Bhalo Pahar School won the Patton School Award for 2008 from The Telegraph, instituted for excellence in teaching by caring about environment.
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Kabitar Camp Is Arranged Every Year at Bhalo Pahar
Next Kobitar Camp at Bhalopahar will be held from August 19 to 22, 2016
Bhalopahar school functions only up to standard VII, yet it is a school with a difference. To fulfill rural development programs of the society, need was felt to educate the Santhal and other underprivileged children who shall uplift their own community in future, caring at the same time that the communities ultimately do not usher into a future devoid of a sense of their inherent environmental culture among their offspring. Our budding school is an attempt to connect the children with their own culture, so that they begin to take pride in it, while learning to read and write in English and Bengali. Therefore reciting their stories and songs are as important to us as teaching the English alphabet. Currently, we have 146 students of which 128 come from Santhal communities and the rest belong primarily to the Mahato communities of the area. Since free education does not build value in life, we charge them monthly 30/- as token money and provide books and uniforms at subsidized rate. The children are given free mid-day meal also. Poor people who can not pay even that amount are allowed to pay in kind of labor in Bhalopahar by doing gardening or an odd job for school.
Students in Bhalopahar school pick up formal education among various other things along the way. They learn to realize their own songs, stories and rituals in lime light. They also learn how trees are planted and how plants yield crops. They learn about their own environment, about the trees birds and animals that are part of their world. All these and more, we believe, reinforce their sense of identity as adivasis. Without criticizing the wanting gaps in our formal education system and defining our goal outside it, we chose to take it on and mould it out in our own way still keeping the children abreast of the best students in the larger society. This way we believe they become respectful in their own as well as neighbor’s culture. Students who know and respect their own root love others also. Thus only they will learn to acknowledge quality of life and strive for the same we believe.
We look forward to have an environmental school with hostel and regular playground and other facilities wherefrom all-square students will graduate in future with your expert kind support. Be a volunteer or a donor, we welcome your advice and shaking hand.