Education Briefs

Pearson presents Stanford 10 India

Pearson PLC — the world’s largest education company — launched the Stanford Achievement Test Series, Tenth Edition (India) aka Stanford 10 India in April. According to Pearson Education (India) sources, Stanford 10 India is an adaptation and standardisation of the Stanford gold standard for achievement testing, adapted to suit the needs of the Indian education system.

Speaking on the occasion in Delhi, Naveen Rajlani, senior vice-president, ELT and schools, Pearson Education, said: “In Pearson Education we firmly believe application-based learning fosters a higher order of thinking skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking and creativity. In our endeavour to bring the best to the Indian education system, Stanford 10 India is yet another product, unmatched in its category. Given the varied needs and requirements of students, teachers and parents, Stanford 10 India is an ideal tool. It will help schools in India change the way they educate students by helping and encouraging applications-based learning.”

Sushil Eapen, managing director of Pearson Clinical and Talent Assessment, agrees. “Stanford Achievement is one of the most established K-12 testing systems worldwide. Stanford 10 India is a scientifically designed skills-based assessment, incorporating the latest thinking in educational testing. It makes challenging subjects like mathematics, science and English interesting for students and motivates them to learn. By identifying the learning gaps of students, Stanford 10 India facilitates development of customised and structured learning plans to bridge this gap,” says Eapen.

Next Education-Sachdeva Public tie-up

The Hyderabad-based e-learning company Next Education India Pvt. Ltd has signed an agreement with the Sachdeva Public School to provide its TeachNext solution to over 300-plus classrooms across its entire chain of nine schools in Delhi/NCR.

“Sachdeva Public signed up for our TeachNext solution after being convinced of its high quality content and reliability after stringent evaluation,” says Beas Dev Ralhan, chief executive officer of Next Education. The solution will be rolled out in all Sachdeva Public schools within a month.

One of the most respected schools in Delhi’s North West District, Sachdeva Public was promoted to transform the demographic assets of young students into a dynamic national force. “Our motto is vidya dadati vinayam, which means knowledge gives humility, capacity and happiness. Our prime objective is to nurture, groom and guide students through all stages to develop them into good human beings and good citizens for the nation,” says Sanjay Sachdeva, director of the school.

Delighted to sign up with TeachNext, Sachdeva believes the company’s TeachNext solution will also help strengthen learning systems. “With its emphasis on self-learning, creating more effective ways to explore and share knowledge, effective appraisal, continuity in evaluation and assessment of broad-based learning, the TeachNext-Sachdeva Public partnership offers the promise of sharply improving learning outcomes in all our schools,” says Sachdeva.

Steven Levy’s Heritage workshops

The Heritage School, Gurgaon “where pedagogy is shaped around the belief that students learn best by doing”, recently hosted a two-week workshop in expeditionary learning (EL), led by Steven Levy, a globally-renowned proponent of this pedagogy.

US-based Levy has won numerous awards, including the Massachusetts Teacher of the Year and Walt Disney Company’s Outstanding General Elementary Teacher, for his impact on project-based learning. Heritage spokespersons say Levy has been working closely with the school for several years, primarily coaching teachers to design ‘expeditions’, which involve investigation of subjects through projects, field studies, performances and presentations of student work to authentic audiences.

“I want students to develop the habit of careful observation and asking questions about their experiences,” says Levy, who believes that the challenge is to “integrate the curriculum into authentic experiences”.

Exhorting teachers to “delight in (their) students,” he urged them “to look for the best, expect the best, find something in each child that we can truly treasure”. “I am convinced that many learning and social difficulties would disappear if we learned to see the genius in each child and then created a lear-ning environment that encourages it to develop,” he added.

Karmaveer Puraskaar nominations invited

Nominations are invited for the annual Karmaveer Puraskaar Global Awards for Social Justice & Citizen Action, instituted in partnership with the UN, VSO, CtrlS and various civil society organisations, media partners, trusts, foundations and academic institutions. These awards are conferred upon individuals worldwide for exceptional work to bring about change in society.

Instituted in 2006 by the Delhi-based iCONGO (International Confederation of NGOs) and its partners to salute the spirit of change leaders every year, the Karmaveer Puraskaar awards ceremony has over the years become a “melting pot” where people from India and global citizens including individuals ranging from princes to bestselling authors, young politicians, statesmen, bureaucrats, ambassadors, actors, singers, captains of industry among others band together to “right every wrong”. “These awards recognise and applaud the social commitment of concerned and caring individuals, who have proactively and voluntarily worked for bringing about  positive transformation in society and the world we live in,” says Meenu Chopra, the Delhi-based executive director of iCONGO. According to Chopra, iCONGO incorporates the global Right Every Wrong movement and the date of the awards ceremony — 26/11 — commemorates iCONGO’s Social Justice & Action Day selected to celebrate the date of adoption of the Constitution of India by the Constituent Assembly in 1949.

“If you know of someone in your circle or organisation who is an exceptional change agent, please nominate them for Karmaveer Puraskaar 2012 that will be given away in Delhi on November 26, 2012 at a simple, austere ceremony where people from all over the world will converge to bring about change together,” says Jerry Almeida, founder of iCONGO (

World Children Expo 2012 agenda

India will have its first comprehensive children’s exposition — World Children Expo (WCE) 2012 — to be staged in Gurgaon (Delhi NCR) between May 25-27. Conceptualised by the Delhi-based Creative Children Media Pvt. Ltd, WCE 2012 is a platform showcasing consumer brands from across businesses related to children in the age group 0-14 years. It will focus on seven sectors — entertainment, education, technology, clothing and apparel, food and beverages, healthcare, toys and FMCGs (fast moving consumer goods).

“World Children Expo 2012 aims to highlight companies and firms involved in producing and promoting children’s essentials. It offers a grand stage for latest entrants in this market too. We are hoping the expo will become a one-stop destination for parents looking for the latest products and services for their kids,” says Rahul Gupta, director and chief executive, Creative Children Media.

WCE 2012 has been divided into three sections — (a) WCE — The Business Conclave (b) Kids’ Favourites Awards scheduled for May 25 at The Crowne Plaza, Gurgaon and (c) World Children Expo (WCE), scheduled for May 26-27 at The Island, Ambience Mall, Gurgaon.

“WCE — The Business Conclave will be a unique knowledge sharing platform hosting head-honchos from all key sectors comprising interactive panel discussions, and high-level keynote presentations. Some of the main speakers include Jiggy George, CEO, Dream Theater; Vasantha Angamuthu, editor  Hindustan Times; Sashwati Banerjee, executive director, Sesame Workshop India; and Denise Carlson, producer, NYFA and former programming head, Disney USA,” says Gupta.

Italian design scholarships offer

Italy’s Domus Academy and Nuova Accademia Di belle Arti (NABA) — ranked among the world’s top art and design institutes — are offering scholarships valued at US$ 460,000 (Rs.2.3 crore) to graduate and postgraduate students from India, and invite design students to submit applications. Located in Milan, the institutes are part of the Laureate International Universities Network in the US, Europe, Latin America, Malaysia, Thailand, Morocco, Turkey, China and Japan and offer study programmes in art and design including visual and graphic arts, fashion, business, accessories, interiors, architecture, multi-media, interaction, film and new media, and photography.

NABA, Italy’s largest private academy approved by the Italian ministry of education, is offering five scholarships valued at US$ 60,000 (Rs.30 lakh) to talented Indian students to pursue undergraduate studies in art and design in the term starting October 2012. Domus is the first postgraduate design school of Italy, and under its international scholarship competition will give 33 winners the opportunity to pursue postgraduate studies in Domus Academy in the term beginning September 2012.

“We would like Indian students to participate in the competition. We want them to come to Italy and enrich the student experience in our campuses and bring back their knowledge and expertise to India, to be able to anticipate the needs and trends of a society that is culturally, economically, and socially evolving,” says Marc Ledermann, chief executive of the Domus Academy and NABA.