What should be a sustainable model of a school?
Lina Ashar: We are slowly moving from a teaching to a learning model, where more focus is given on learning and applying knowledge in the real world. Hence, to sustain in the future every school needs to be child centric and work on learning outcomes and not just retaining information. Also, schools should work on a personalised education model for children, as each child is unique.
How do you think the landscape of school industry changed in the last two decades?
Seshasai KVS: Decades back education was a sector run by the government or we had government aided convent schools, it was all about a classroom filled with 50 – 60 students and we followed the rote method of learning and no emphasis was given on understanding and applying the concepts we have learnt. Today, however, a lot of emphasis is given to education and parents now aspire to send their children to the best schools focussing on personalized learning for the children.
And in terms of economy, the education sector in India is poised to witness major growth in the years to come as India will have world’s largest tertiary-age population and second largest graduate talent pipeline globally by the end of 2020. The education sector in India is estimated at US$ 91.7 billion in FY18 and is expected to reach US$ 101.1 billion in FY19E.
What opinion do you have regarding the regulations followed by schools?
Lina Ashar: There is a huge scope for private education in India as there is a great demand for education and not enough schools. However, the government needs to keep in mind that a private investor will invest for profits, hence, before making rules, regulations and policies they should consult the education body, as sometimes the intention may be good but it effects the regular functioning of schools.
What are the driving trends of this industry now?
Seshasai KVS: With technology taking over every aspect of our lives, the education industry is affected by the same too. Today distance learning is a norm in the higher education category, however very soon we will have flip classrooms where children will learn at home with different tools and come to school to discuss and apply their learnings.
Today parents are also aware and they prefer schools that can integrate the western form of teaching in the classrooms as they find it beneficial for their children, Hence schools slowly are working at changing teaching and assessment methodology.
With lots of mental cases coming up these days what responsibility does an institution have for the students?
Lina Ashar: School is a place where a child spends about six to eight hours a day. Therefore, any institution is equally responsible and should make sure they provide a safe and secure environment to children, right from physical safety to emotional safety. Teachers should be trained to catch any misbehaviour and address the issue or escalate the same.
What are your plans for expansion?
Seshasai KVS: We are aggressively expanding from 100 + preschools and schools we plan to move to 300+ preschools and schools in the next few years. We will be expanding in India as well as internationally. We are looking at expanding in our neighbouring countries, Southeast Asian countries and the Gulf in the near future.
When it comes to the field of parenting what tips would you like to give to guardians?
Lina Ashar: Adolescence is an age where children are re-discovering themselves and as guardians we need to give them enough freedom to choose and follow the process. We should be there for our children as friends and guides, rather than authoritative parents.