Education should focus on overall devpt of children: Mistri
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Last Updated: Monday, May 24, 2010, 20:45
Mumbai: Shaheen Mistri, founder of Akanksha Foundation and Teach for India, said focus of the education system must be overall development of children and not examination results.

"Education should not be result-driven. There is a need to redefine the education system, which should be the overall development of children, preparing them to lead the world and building values and self-confidence," Shaheen told reporters.

Shaheen, one of the founding members of Teach for India and founder of Akanksha Foundation, an NGO, undertook the task of educating the less privileged children.

She said of late it has been noticed that more and more poor parents too are willing to educate their children.

"As the disposable income rises they even transfer their children to English medium schools," she added.

With regards to the Muslim community, Shaheen said, language barrier is a problem.

Shaheen is toying with the idea of adopting 'Charter School' model followed by the USA. "The model focuses on imparting education to lower income group of children, funding is done by the Government and private parties run it. I feel the model must be tested in India as well."

Akanksha, a non-profit organisation began in 1990 to educate slum kids. She also started Teach for India in 2008, a nationwide movement of graduates and young professionals who for two years teach full time in under-resourced schools. Akanksha started with educating ten children from a slum.

Today it is providing education to 3,500 children, she said adding there are 58 Akanksha centres in Mumbai and Pune.

On the two-day Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship held in Washington last month, Shaheen who met President Barack Obama said, "It highlighted the importance of entrepreneurship, job creation and community development, identified ways to advance economic and social entrepreneurship," Shaheen said.


First Published: Monday, May 24, 2010, 20:45

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