From a workers’ colony in West Bengal’s Durgapur to serving top posts in multinational companies in the United States and becoming the mentor and Managing Director of KT Global School in Khurda, the journey of Somdutt Behura has never been easy. In a conversation with Orissa POST, Behura speaks on a host of issues associated with today’s education system.

How different is KT Global School from other top English medium schools in Odisha?

We are different. In fact, KT Global School is a one-of-its-kind school in India that focuses not only on academic excellence but also on holistic development of children, fostering and sustaining creativity into their productive years as adults.

Your take on the Indian education system?

These days, it feels like it is the parents writing their exams given the level of stress and anxiety they undergo just to ensure their ward scores well. All they want from children and school is to secure good marks in exams. In order to meet this demand and earn reputational status, schools are burning the midnight oil to make sure that students come out with flying colours in exams. It is high time the quality of education changed. Else, days are not far when the race for name and score will end up damaging the standard of Indian education.

How do you see the National Education Policy?

The National Education Policy aims at fostering creativity among students in their primary classes. Besides focussing on skill development, the policy also lays stress on the simplification of education and the subsequent growth of the children. However, it is premature to conclude anything on the policy before its implementation.

How the atmosphere of a school helps in skill development of students?

After home, school is the second humble abode where a child can experiment and learn. In fact, schools can identify the exact needs/lacunae of a child (in terms of learning objectives) and help address them, which is not possible at home. At school, a child gets the ambiance to be creative while having fun with classmates in a curated learning ecosystem. This, in long run, helps in skill development of children.

What would you suggest for an educational institution to grow in this competitive market?

Competition happens in the market, not in schools. At schools, we must recognize the global scale and scope of learning. Good scores and a big campus will not help one to survive in the system. But dedicated focus and a path to creativity will. In order to succeed, we need to create an atmosphere that helps develop and sustain creativity among students.

About your future plans?

No one has seen the future, but all, including us, keep planning. We have something big in our offering. Efforts are on to bring changes in the system by making students our agents of change. We are already educating students on ways to utilise their talent and knowledge to become global citizens.

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