Boarding schools: An education solution – Neeraj Mohan Puri

Boarding schools: An education solution

— Mr. Neeraj Mohan Puri, Principal, Satyug Darshan Vidyalaya, Faridabad

In Indian context, being a parent is a great feeling; a privilege and with this comes mammoth responsibility of being the architect of the future of our kids. Indian parents are very obsessed about the wellbeing, bright future and rewarding career of their offspring. So, the moment a couple is blessed with a child, the first thing they start planning is about schooling. Indeed, it has to be on the top list as it is the most important commitment.

In our country, broadly, schools can be categorized under Boarding-cum-dayboarding or Day schools only. Generally, day school remains the first priority for the parents; may be due to financial compulsions, social pressure or grandparent intervention. If we run down our memory lane, we can easily recollect the GURUKUL system of education. During primitive era, Kings and powerful sections of society used to send their children away from home to attain education and mastery over skills. Candidly, that was the only means of holistic development of a child. You all will agree that whatever best we may try, but the harmonious and all round development of a child can never happen at home. You can’t isolate a child from the pampered, over-protective atmosphere at home. The child is always enveloped with infinite distractions being at home. Moreover, contemporary practices like education from home has witnessed devastating effects not only on the academic growth but also on the mental wellbeing and physical development of a student. Being confined within four walls, they are over exposed to the gadgets. But they cannot be blamed for the same as they have no other choice.

In contrast, those children who are at boarding houses always have a cutting edge over their peers. There is no gain saying that being at hostels, home away from home, learners enjoy life to its fullest. They have a disciplined life style with adequate time table striking balance between scholastic and co-scholastic activities extended around the day. There is no denying the fact and all of us will agree that under prevailing circumstances, boarding schools are the only complete solution to the education.

Of course, letting your child leave the nest early and join a boarding school is certainly not an easy decision to make, neither for the parents, nor for the children. After all, it does feel so much easier just to enrol your child to the nearest day school and have him/her come back to the cocoon at the end of the day. But, are you sure that by doing so, are we really making our ward globally competitive, preparing him for the real test called LIFE? In this razor edge competitive scenario, life is not all about cracking NEET and JEE; it is about possessing 21st century lifeskills and by being responsible and environmentally conscious citizen. Corona period has proved that EQ, AQ and SQ are far more needed to survive rather than being only high at IQ. This is where boarding schools gain an edge over the day schools in enabling the kids to grow into more confident, more responsible, more success-driven individuals.

Let us be rational and overcome the myth and taboos that children who are extremely mischievous, spoilt or those who are academically weak are the ones who are often sent to the boarding schools. But we, at SATYUG DARSHAN VIDYALAYA, Faridabad, would like to assure the parents that boarding schools are for every child as they aid in the development of the young minds in the best possible way. Here are a few aspects which will make you understand why boarding schools can provide children with an edge that they never get to gain in day schools.

Developing values of punctuality and discipline: The foremost reason that makes boarding schools a best option is the fact that hostel life inculcate a sense of punctuality and discipline in the students. At a boarding school, children are made to follow and maintain a schedule according to which they wake up, study, eat, play and sleep. There are rules both within the school and in the hostels that each student follows diligently. It all comes together to groom them into more responsible and dependable individuals in future.

Access to sports and extracurricular activities: There is no gain saying, that the encouragement to engage in extracurricular activities and sports are noticeably higher in boarding schools. Children are inspired to participate in all co-curricular activities and sports. And, owing to the camaraderie that exists between the boarders, children learn to come forward to encourage each other and stand with their peers whenever needed. This helps to instill in them some crucial life skills like team spirit, collaboration, communication, leadership and more. This makes them a complete package.

Fewer distractions: Boarding schools keep children focused on their academics and personal development as unnecessary distractions are eliminated. Children don’t get lured into any activity that shifts their concentration like mobiles, play stations, guests etc. Being in such an environment of learning and knowledge, the progress of the young budding geniuses is made more effective and continuous.

More self-reliant and independent: This is one of the prime reasons why parents prefer sending their children to a boarding school. At a boarding school, children learn to take care of themselves from a young age, which turns them into an independent individual for life. They become habitual to daily chores like getting up early, arranging their bed, cupboard, preserving their articles etc.

Encouraging and exciting summer programmes: Well-planned and exciting summer programs are an important feature of leading boarding schools. At Vidsan, we have noticed how excited our summer programs make our children because it gives them a chance to expand their horizon. Students get to go to top international educational institutes, interact with students from different backgrounds and culture, that shape their own world views. There’s a lot that children take away from these summer programmes.

Remedial Classes: Another salient feature of hostel life is availability of inhouse remedial classes. In the quest of extra knowledge children have to toil around from one tuition centre to another. It is inevitable to have some extra grooming classes for every pupil, which in a boarding school is done by the same subject experts who are main teachers to the students. This cements the relationship of educator and learner further. 

Nurturing skills: Boarding school is the best place to help child follow his dreams, hone his skills. Theater, dance, music, fine arts, stand up comedy, photography, event management, anything and everything artistic is part of the opportunity which awaits them at most boarding schools. 

Training for life away from home: One fine day every bird has to leave the nest and fly under the open sky. But, then why to wait for college days, why not to train the child before the university? With this pre-exposure, of course, under the guidance of expert mentors they will learn how to cope with every tide of life.

Building endurance: This pandemic has proved the old adage, “Health is wealth”. Boarding students have strong physical endurance. They are exposed to lot of physical drills like early morning PT, workout, stretching, jogging, yoga, meditation. These build up their stamina and strengthen their immunity system.

Respecting Diversity: Last but not the least, we cannot ignore the fact that the future workforce and work places would be highly diversified. Best part of the hostel life is that we get to meet people from length and breadth of the nation and overseas also. This shrinks the globe and make student a global citizen. Growing up with the peer from various cultures, races and demographics helps one to be a great team player and a successful leader.

Satyug Darshan Vidyalaya is one of the biggest boarding schools with highest number of residential students. We do understand that initially it sounds like a tough decision to take to let your child join a boarding school, but if you see, it eventually helps the kids to blossom into independent, successful individuals. In our years of experience, grooming the young minds to grow in a disciplined, independent, and holistic manner, a boarding school is the only place where this is made possible. Needless to say, the list goes on. So, let us gift our child the best he/she deserves, before it’s too late. My last advice is, the earlier you expose your child to Boarding set up, the better the results would be.