Plans in offing for two new Sai International Schools in North and Western Odisha: Dr. Bijaya Kumar Sahoo
Bhubaneswar: Dr. Bijaya Kumar Sahoo, Founder of Sai International School, discussed the challenges of continuing education during the pandemic and the ongoing debate over online and classroom education. He also talked about plans to set up two new schools in the state soon.
Here is an excerpt from the conversation:
What is Sai Cloud School? How has it helped students?
After the schools were closed due to the COVID-19 lockdown, cloud school was set up so the students could avail education from home. Through this virtual medium, students are not just studying but also engaging in other co-curricular activities conducted by the school. With this, over 5,500 students from our three schools have benefited.
What was your experience seeing your school top in the national school rankings?
The rankings were based on 14 criteria, including test scores and social responsibility. Earlier, only schools from Delhi, Mumbai, and Bengaluru topped the list. But for the first time, a school from the eastern India region had taken the spot. So, that is indeed a matter of pride.
Will the emergence of online learning reduce the importance of classroom learning?
No one can separate teachers and students from each other. Technology can only improve teaching. But the role that a school plays in shaping students’ lives is not possible to achieve in a virtual way. In school, children learn a lot from their friends, juniors, and seniors. They learn values from their teachers. School education contributes to the overall betterment of students.
As an advisor, how do you see the future of the model school?
Hatiota and Patharchepa Adarsha Vidyalayas were ranked in the National School Rankings. As many as 214 Adarsha Vidyalayas (model schools) are being set up in the state and 34 more will be opened by April. Four new model schools will be opened in the next two years. Last time, 300 students passed the examinations with more than 90% marks. 10 Centers of Excellence have been set up to provide them with free coaching for engineering, medical and defense. I am confident that all other states in the country will adopt Odisha’s Adarsha Vidyalaya model.
Any plans to open a new school?
There are plans to open new schools in northern and western Odisha. The process of land acquisition is going on. There are also plans to open schools outside the state.
What do you think about Sambad Brands of Odisha Pride of India?
Sambad Group always comes up with something new. This campaign is a very good idea and will encourage others. Entrepreneurs in Odisha are usually not recognized easily. This award will not just encourage them but also the new generation who will strive to become the brands of Odisha themselves someday. So, I congratulate the Sambad Group for this campaign.