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On Children’s Day, students pick up the broom

posted Nov 16, 2014, 5:06 AM by Hanif Kanjer

Rustomjee Cambridge students get involved with #Swachh Bharathttp://www.iamin.in/en/mumbai-north/news/children%E2%80%99s-day-students-pick-broom-46262
Saturday, 15 November 2014 - 5:32pm IST Santosh Ray | Edited by: Disha Shetty
  • Students of Rustomjee Cambridge School, Dahisar, helped clean the premises of Sanjay Gandhi National Park on Children’s Day.
    Students of Rustomjee Cambridge School, Dahisar, helped clean the premises of Sanjay Gandhi National Park on Children’s Day.  Santosh Ray/iamin

Swaach Bharat Abhiyan, kick started by the prime minister, has caught the imagination of the young and old. What better way to mark Children’s Day than to teach children the lessons of cleanliness, thought authorities of Rustomjee Cambridge International School, Dahisar. 800 students studying in classes three to nine were brought to Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) where they helped authorities to pick up the thrash left behind by several visitors.
To ensure that there was no duplication of work, every student was given a separate area to clean, along with gloves and masks to protect themselves. Sanjana Dhamankar, a class nine student of Rustomjee Cambridge school, said, “I was inspired by our prime minister when he took to the roads to clean them. Today, I picked up several chocolate wrapped, disposing them at the nearest garbage bin.” Chaitali Mehta, a teacher at Rustomjee Cambridge School, said, “We have to instill the value of cleanliness in the next generation to ensure that the campaign continues for a long time. We have taught children not to throw waste carelessly in public places. They have to also make an effort to ensure that Mumbai remains clean and green.” 

Saturday, 15 November 2014 - 5:32pm IST Santosh Ray | Edited by: Disha Shetty

Principal Tanya Valecha speaks to Hindustan Times about her action-based research

posted Nov 12, 2014, 6:01 PM by Hanif Kanjer

http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/mumbai/tackle-bullying-in-schools-with-humour/article1-1285092.aspx

‘Tackle bullying in schools with humour’

Puja Pednekar, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, November 12, 2014
First Published: 00:43 IST(12/11/2014) | Last Updated: 00:45 IST(12/11/2014)

At a time when instances of bullying are on the rise in the city, an action research by a city school principal has revealed that students want the issue to be tackled through humour and counselling rather than severe disciplinary action.

The research was conducted by Tanya Valecha, principal of Rustomjee Cambridge International School and Junior College, Dahisar. She was recently awarded the Global Teachers Accreditation (GTA) by the British Council for the research.

The GTA provides professional training and accredits classroom-based research to enable teachers to improve students’ learning. Other teachers across the city have also received the award for their research in various fields.

“As I teach students of Classes 8 and 9, I realised that bullying is a matter of concern for students — especially in that age group,” said Valecha, who will receive the award in Delhi in December. “So, as part of my research, I asked students on what they think are the best ways to tackle bullying.”

Surprisingly, a majority of the interviewed students suggested that a bully should not be punished with severe disciplinary action. Instead, punishment can be in the form of depriving the child of certain benefits such as not allowing him/her to participate in some school activities.
Students also suggested counselling and the use of humour to bring about a change in the behaviour of the bully.

Other suggestions included setting up of systems for anonymous reporting, so that more and more children open up about bullying.

“A child does not have malicious intentions at heart while bullying. It happens because of peer pressure, as the child wants to appear cool in front of his friends,” said Valecha. “In some cases, a child indulges in intimidating others because he was bullied in the past.”

Valecha also found that bullying is not taken seriously by parents. “Generally, parents ignore bullying as they think it is part of growing up. However, it can affect the child’s confidence and self-esteem, and should not be ignored,” she said.

According to her, bullying is not only physical harassment, but anything that causes discomfort to the child. “Parents should ensure that their kids feel comfortable with them or any other adult in the family, so that children confide about such incidents to them,” she said.

Parents also agree that more parental involvement is needed to tackle bullying. “If I find that my child is being bullied, I will go to the child’s parents and talk to them, so that they talk to the child about his behaviour,” said Bindu Corriea, a parent from Bandra.

Recognising the seriousness of bullying in schools, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) had recommended an anti-bullying policy to the ministry of human resource and development a couple of months ago.

The board had recommended several measures to tackle bullying under the policy. “We recommended forming anti-bullying squads in schools. We also suggested that committees formed under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act also look into bullying cases,” said a CBSE director.

The board had also proposed punishments, including oral and written warnings, fines, suspensions for a specified period, withholding of examination results and expulsion from school in extreme cases.

“We are of the view that more than punishments, corrective actions should be taken against children caught bullying,” she said.


16 Mumbai Students World toppers in Cambridge Exams - TOI 5th September 2014

posted Sep 5, 2014, 7:40 AM by Hanif Kanjer   [ updated Sep 5, 2014, 8:00 AM ]


MUMBAI: As many as 31 students from India have scored the highest marks in the world in a single subject in the November 2013 and May 2014 Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) series.


Of the 31 world toppers, 16 are from various schools in Mumbai, including Billabong High International school, Utpal Shanghvi School, Rustomjee Cambridge International School (with 6 world toppers), Dhirubhai Ambani International School, Aditya Birla World Academy, Jamnabai Narsee School and Podar International School.

While the results were announced in August, CIE announced the world toppers on Thursday. The world toppers and 84 national toppers will be felicitated by Michael O'Sullivan, CEO of Cambridge International Examinations, and Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, vice-chancellor of the University of Cambridge, on September 16.

According to the Cambridge International Examinations, almost half of the world toppers got the award for their performance in mathematics. "I was always interested in mathematics but I also put in a lot of practice. I dedicated about half an hour of my study time to the subject every day," said Anant Kandoi of Jamnabai Narsee School in Juhu, who topped Mathematics (without coursework).

For the toppers, question papers from the previous years did the trick. "I did not put in long hours. In fact, I also spent time in art and playing the guitar. Solving question papers from the previous years really helped me score well in mathematics," said Rishabh Mani of Billabong High International School in Thane, who is also a world topper for mathematics in IGCSE.

The world toppers have outperformed thousands of candidates worldwide in Cambridge IGCSE, Cambridge International AS Level and Cambridge International A Level exams.

The 84 national toppers aced subjects like geography, history, music, French, German, Spanish, Sanskrit and world literature. The list of awardees also includes students who have achieved the total highest cumulative marks across a number of subjects in India.

Vinayak Sudhakar, CIE's senior schools development manager for India, said, "These achievements demonstrate the dedication and commitment of teachers support provided by families and friends, and learners' determination and passion to succeed. This success defines them not just as learners, but as Cambridge learners. We wish them every success in their future."

Schools said a stress-free environment is the key to excelling in Cambridge International Examinations. "These students who have topped the IGCSE examination have gifted us with is proof of concept that learning can be stress free, joyful and still effective," said Lina Asher, founder of Billabong High.

There was 10% growth across all Cambridge qualifications offered in India, with more than 43,000 entries in both the November and June series of examinations.


School kids adopt spotted deer

posted Sep 5, 2014, 7:39 AM by Hanif Kanjer   [ updated Sep 5, 2014, 8:00 AM ]

The Indian Express, Written by Anjali Lukose | Mumbai | March 12, 2014 1:33 am

The next time students of Rustomjee Cambridge International School walk into the Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) in Borivali, unlike regular visitors, they will be there to meet their “pets”. These students are the first ones in the city to have adopted a wild animal, in this case spotted deer, from the national park and the school’s name will now feature outside the spotted deer’s enclosure.

The state’s Forest Department had in January issued a government resolution that allows people to “adopt” a wild animal that lives in enclosures and those in the safari (bred in captivity) at SGNP. The national park sent a letter to the Dahisar-based school last week, making the adoption official.

Being frequent visitors at the park, the Dahisar schoolchildren had heard of this proposal in August last year. Next thing they did was to shoot off letters to all parents expressing their interest in adopting a wild animal. “When we visited the animals, we knew instantly we wanted to adopt them. The spotted deer looked slightly weak to us and we wanted to take care of them,” said Heer Shah, the head girl.

“It feels special to have a wild animal as a pet; an animal that lives in a good habitat and we take care of them,” said Sanjana Dhamankar, the captain.

Since January, the student council has been collecting money from students ranging from nursery to Class 12. Seeing their enthusiasm, the school chipped in an equal amount for the adoption.

“Every year, the students collect and donate money otherwise used to buy flowers and gifts for their teachers on Teacher’s Day or for a cause close to their hearts,” said Tanya Valecha, the school principal. “Last year, the students collected money for cancer-stricken people.”

“The schoolchildren are the first ones. An initiative like this coming from children is a great thing. Their act can enthuse others into adopting as well. As deers are part of the zoo, large groups coming to see them wouldn’t be a problem. Enquiries from others are mainly about the bigger wild cats, but we have not received any forms yet. For the big cats, special visits have to be arranged,” said Vikas Gupta, chief conservator of forests, SGNP.

Around 15 people have taken the adoption forms and we have received some calls asking for details, said S D Saste, assistant conservator of forests, SGNP.

Up for adoption are five lions, three white tigers, six tigers, 24 leopards, 5 rusty spotted cats, 32 spotted deer, 2 blue bulls and one barking deer. The money will be used only for feeding of the animal and the person adopting will be allowed to visit the caged animal once a week during a stipulated time free of charge. In case of a large group adopting a single animal, special group visits will be arranged, Saste added.




Mumbai Students Tops Global International Exams!

posted Sep 5, 2014, 7:36 AM by Hanif Kanjer

Mumbai Students Tops Global International Exams! Posted by: Ashwathi Updated: Tuesday, October 9, 2012, 10:49 [IST]

Students of Mumbai have scored the top place in the Global level International examinations. They have scored maximum scores at the Cambridge International examination. This proves that they are right up there again as the best in the world. According to the sources, revealed that 10 students scored the highest marks at the exams held in November 2011 and June 2012 across the world, and 20 students have been awarded for topping in various categories in India. 

Almost around 6,800 candidates belonging to Mumbai had appeared for the exams of the Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education, Cambridge International AS and A Level this year, it has a 23% increase compared to the last year. A Student named Dharmi Desai of Utpal Sanghvi School, is a world topper in accounting and environmental management and a national topper for combined sciences. And another student named Utsav Banka topped in India in accounting and economics at the A Levels and also recently cleared his CPT exams too. 

Vinayak Sudhakar, the Cambridge schools development manager in India said "I am very proud to congratulate learners across the country on their outstanding results at the Cambridge examinations. It is encouraging to acknowledge the high standards of education offered by the schools in India that is reflected n these results." "Students from Dhirubhai Ambani International School received awards for scoring the highest marks in four categories and five awards for highest marks in India", he added. These toppers who belong to Mumbai are from schools such as : Utpal Sanghvi School, Dhirubhai Ambani International School, Podar International School, NES International School, Fazlani L'Academie Globale, Fravashi International Academy, Rustomjee Cambridge International School, Universal School, Avalon Heights International School Learning Panorama Foundation, Bombay International School, NSS Hill Spring International School, Ryan Global School, Prabhavati Padmashi Soni International Junior College and Billabong High International School. Topics: mumbai, exams, students, maharashtra Story first published: Tuesday, October 9, 2012, 10:28 [IST]

Read more at: http://www.careerindia.com/news/2012/10/09/mumbai-students-tops-global-level-international-exams-002953.html

Indias academic elite excel at Cambridge Outstanding Achiever awards

posted Sep 5, 2014, 7:32 AM by Hanif Kanjer

Indias academic elite excel at Cambridge Outstanding Achiever awards

India Infoline News Service | Mumbai | September 14, 2009 16:23 IST

In total, 79 Cambridge IGCSE and Cambridge AS/A Level students from across the country will receive Cambridge Outstanding Achiever awards certificates in ceremonies at their individual schools.

Ten academically gifted students in India have come top in the world in their Cambridge international examinations for their outstanding academic achievements in the November 2008 and June 2009 Cambridge examination sessions. These exceptional students will be awarded the highly sought-after Cambridge Outstanding Achiever awards for academic excellence.

In total, 79 Cambridge IGCSE and Cambridge AS/A Level students from across the country will receive Cambridge Outstanding Achiever awards certificates in ceremonies at their individual schools. The certificates are being awarded for outstanding results across Cambridge IGCSEs, Cambridge AS Levels and Cambridge A Levels in both the November 2008 and June 2009 examination sessions. Award categories are Top in the World (individual subjects), Top in India (individual subjects), Top in India across any six Cambridge IGCSEs and Top in India across any three Cambridge A Levels. A new category has been added this year, called the Outstanding Achievement Award (individual subjects) designed to recognise exceptional academic prowess.

Ian Chambers, CIE Regional Manager for South Asia said: "CIE is thrilled to be able to award these outstanding students their Outstanding Achiever in India awards."

"The number of students receiving numerous A and A* grades in their examinations in India has risen year-on-year from 34 per cent in 2007 to 38 per cent in 2009. Indian students now rank five per cent above the rest of the world in their examinations performance. This is testament to Cambridge students hard work and commitment to learning, as well as the quality of teaching offered by our family of dedicated Cambridge teaches in India. We are proud to be a part of these students academic journey and wish them every continued success with their further studies and employment. We send them our most heartfelt congratulations."

Ecstatic Cambridge students in India spoke to CIE on the day their June 2009 results were released on August 10, with many attributing their high grades to the quality of teaching they had received as well as their own hard work, and the support of their family and friends.

"After the two months of suspense since we sat the Cambridge IGCSE exams, finally getting my grades all 10 A*s just made me ecstatic. I hope these grades will help me on my way to my dream universities, MIT or Stanford in the US, so I can study Computer Science with some of the best peers and professors in the world," one student said.

Cambridge Outstanding Achiever in India award winners

Top in the World (individual subjects) November 2008

IGCSE

AccountingAlokik MishraChoithram International Indore
Mathematics (without coursework)Neil Surendra SatraDhirubhai Ambani International School, Mumbai

AS Level

MathematicsAjay RavindranMallya Aditi International School

Top in the World (individual subjects) June 2009

IGCSE

Art and DesignKaran HandaThe British School New Delhi
Business StudiesMahesh Rajesh AgrawalDhirubhai Ambani International School, Mumbai
Combined ScienceAbhimanyu LeleCentre For Learning
Hindi as a Second LanguageAbdullah ShaikhDhirubhai Ambani International School, Mumbai
Literature (English)Karuna KadamThe International School Bangalore
Literature (English)Jasmine Violet StephensHebron School India

Top in India (individual subjects) November 2008

IGCSE

BiologyBhojwani KomalPodar International School
Business StudiesKrithika VenkataramanThe International School Bangalore
ChemistryBhojwani KomalPodar International School
EconomicsAlokik MishraChoithram International Indore
English as a Second LanguageShaily SalujaDps International, Saket, New Delhi
Environmental ManagementMatta Harmeet Singh Varian SinghTrinity International School
First Language EnglishAyesha Susan Mangalath ThomasBritish Council Kolkata
Foreign Language FrenchKrithika VenkataramanThe International School Bangalore
GeographyLucinda Pinto Furtado HenriquetaEuropean School of Goa
Information TechnologyZurale Devansh AvinashRustomjee Cambridge International School
PhysicsPrahlad Das GriffithBritish Council Kolkata


AS Level

AccountingHarmeet Harmohinder AjmaniPrabhavati Padamshi Soni International Junior College
Applied ICTNikita SharmaPrimus Public School
Art and DesignYa Tien Adriana WongHebron School India
BiologyVipin AjayakumarTrivandrum International School
Business StudiesChaudhari Roshni Rajeev AneesaPodar International School
ChemistryB SoumitraRustomjee Cambridge International School
ComputingVipin AjayakumarTrivandrum International School
EconomicsDuggal NealMallya Aditi International School
EconomicsShubhi SharmaMallya Aditi International School
English LanguageBodhi VaniAhmedabad International School
Literature in EnglishRohini BhoseThe Cambridge School
MathematicsRohan Rajiv MerchantPrabhavati Padamshi Soni International Junior College
MathematicsBudhraja Payal RajkumarPodar International School
MathematicsSiddharth Bhupesh RaikarRustomjee Cambridge International School
PhysicsB SoumitraRustomjee Cambridge International School



Say NO to tuitions, students tell parents

posted Sep 5, 2014, 6:07 AM by Hanif Kanjer   [ updated Sep 5, 2014, 6:07 AM ]

Jul 18, 2008, 03.46 AM IST

Hanif Kanjer, the director  of Rustomjee Cambridge International School who came up with the idea

Rustomjee Cambridge International School (RCIS) in Dahisar has hit upon a novel way of dissuading parents from sending their children to coaching class. School officials called parents for a special session on Wednesday where the children made presentations through hand-made posters about the perils of tuition classes. 

The school has also started additional teaching sessions during school hours for students who are weak in studies.

Hanif Kanjer, the director of RCIS who came up with the idea, said he had decided on it after discussing it with teachers and the principal over the past three weeks. “We thought it would create a great impact on parents if the children themselves explained what problems they faced at tuition classes,” Kanjer said.

The school has also decided to have a session on “no-tuition” campaign at every open-house meeting. 

“It was found that the method adopted by school teachers and tuition teachers is different, which adds to the student’s confusion. Children also deserve some time for play and other activities which they miss out on because of tuition classes.  The timings at our school are 8.30 am to 4.30 pm after which students have to attend a three-hour tuition class. This gives them absolutely no time to relax,” Kanjer added.

Children also deserve some time for play and other activities which they miss out on because of tuition classes. With 3-hour tuition class after school hours, students have absolutely no time for extra-curricular activities
– Hanif Kanjer



 Students say 

We asked all students to make posters on what they feel about tuition classes. We have put up these posters all over the school premises. I am very confident that this campaign will be a success.

- Avani Bhagat, 14, a Std IX student and head-girl of the school 

I have never felt the need to go to tuition class. I feel whatever we are taught at school is sufficient. Apart from that I do self-study at home. My parents too emphasise that I must take part in extra-curricular activities rather than join a coaching class.

- Siddharth Menon, 14, Std IX, head-boy of the school

What’s the need to go to two schools? My mom teaches me at home after school hours and I also get enough time to play with my friends

- Kush Desai, 8, Std III

I had joined a coaching class for a month and I found that it does nothing but add to the stress. As a student counsellor of my class, I try to persuade parents of my classmates to avoid sending them to coaching class

- Ameya Kamath, 13, Std VIII

The students of Rustomjee Cambridge International School with the posters they made and presented to parents on Wednesday

Parents say 

Meanwhile, parents remain divided over the issue. While some feel tuition classes are not needed, others say their children definitely need extra classes. Jagruti Vaishnav, whose son is a Std IV student at RCIS, said, “Sending a child for tuition classes is a waste of time. 

Children do not get enough time to relax or play.  Tuition classes are only required if parents are uneducated and are unable to teach their children at home.” Charlene D’Souza, mother of a Std VI student, said, “Both my husband and I work and return home late. 

In that case, we want our son to study and follow certain discipline and, hence, it becomes important for us to send him to tuition class.”

16 Mumbai Students World toppers in Cambridge Exams - TOI 5th September 2014

posted Sep 5, 2014, 5:43 AM by Hanif Kanjer   [ updated Sep 5, 2014, 5:43 AM ]


MUMBAI: As many as 31 students from India have scored the highest marks in the world in a single subject in the November 2013 and May 2014 Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) series.


Of the 31 world toppers, 16 are from various schools in Mumbai, including Billabong High International school, Utpal Shanghvi School, Rustomjee Cambridge International School (with 6 world toppers), Dhirubhai Ambani International School, Aditya Birla World Academy, Jamnabai Narsee School and Podar International School.

While the results were announced in August, CIE announced the world toppers on Thursday. The world toppers and 84 national toppers will be felicitated by Michael O'Sullivan, CEO of Cambridge International Examinations, and Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, vice-chancellor of the University of Cambridge, on September 16.

According to the Cambridge International Examinations, almost half of the world toppers got the award for their performance in mathematics. "I was always interested in mathematics but I also put in a lot of practice. I dedicated about half an hour of my study time to the subject every day," said Anant Kandoi of Jamnabai Narsee School in Juhu, who topped Mathematics (without coursework).

For the toppers, question papers from the previous years did the trick. "I did not put in long hours. In fact, I also spent time in art and playing the guitar. Solving question papers from the previous years really helped me score well in mathematics," said Rishabh Mani of Billabong High International School in Thane, who is also a world topper for mathematics in IGCSE.

The world toppers have outperformed thousands of candidates worldwide in Cambridge IGCSE, Cambridge International AS Level and Cambridge International A Level exams.

The 84 national toppers aced subjects like geography, history, music, French, German, Spanish, Sanskrit and world literature. The list of awardees also includes students who have achieved the total highest cumulative marks across a number of subjects in India.

Vinayak Sudhakar, CIE's senior schools development manager for India, said, "These achievements demonstrate the dedication and commitment of teachers support provided by families and friends, and learners' determination and passion to succeed. This success defines them not just as learners, but as Cambridge learners. We wish them every success in their future."

Schools said a stress-free environment is the key to excelling in Cambridge International Examinations. "These students who have topped the IGCSE examination have gifted us with is proof of concept that learning can be stress free, joyful and still effective," said Lina Asher, founder of Billabong High.

There was 10% growth across all Cambridge qualifications offered in India, with more than 43,000 entries in both the November and June series of examinations.

School kids ‘adopt’ spotted deer at Sanjay Gandhi National Park

posted Mar 12, 2014, 7:04 AM by Hanif Kanjer

The Indian Express, Written by Anjali Lukose | Mumbai | March 12, 2014 1:33 am

The next time students of Rustomjee Cambridge International School walk into the Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) in Borivali, unlike regular visitors, they will be there to meet their “pets”. These students are the first ones in the city to have adopted a wild animal, in this case spotted deer, from the national park and the school’s name will now feature outside the spotted deer’s enclosure.

The state’s Forest Department had in January issued a government resolution that allows people to “adopt” a wild animal that lives in enclosures and those in the safari (bred in captivity) at SGNP. The national park sent a letter to the Dahisar-based school last week, making the adoption official.

Being frequent visitors at the park, the Dahisar schoolchildren had heard of this proposal in August last year. Next thing they did was to shoot off letters to all parents expressing their interest in adopting a wild animal. “When we visited the animals, we knew instantly we wanted to adopt them. The spotted deer looked slightly weak to us and we wanted to take care of them,” said Heer Shah, the head girl.

“It feels special to have a wild animal as a pet; an animal that lives in a good habitat and we take care of them,” said Sanjana Dhamankar, the captain.

Since January, the student council has been collecting money from students ranging from nursery to Class 12. Seeing their enthusiasm, the school chipped in an equal amount for the adoption.

“Every year, the students collect and donate money otherwise used to buy flowers and gifts for their teachers on Teacher’s Day or for a cause close to their hearts,” said Tanya Valecha, the school principal. “Last year, the students collected money for cancer-stricken people.”

“The schoolchildren are the first ones. An initiative like this coming from children is a great thing. Their act can enthuse others into adopting as well. As deers are part of the zoo, large groups coming to see them wouldn’t be a problem. Enquiries from others are mainly about the bigger wild cats, but we have not received any forms yet. For the big cats, special visits have to be arranged,” said Vikas Gupta, chief conservator of forests, SGNP.

Around 15 people have taken the adoption forms and we have received some calls asking for details, said S D Saste, assistant conservator of forests, SGNP.

Up for adoption are five lions, three white tigers, six tigers, 24 leopards, 5 rusty spotted cats, 32 spotted deer, 2 blue bulls and one barking deer. The money will be used only for feeding of the animal and the person adopting will be allowed to visit the caged animal once a week during a stipulated time free of charge. In case of a large group adopting a single animal, special group visits will be arranged, Saste added.

anjali.lukose@expressindia.com


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