Army Public School, Barrackpore

EducationWorld June 2022 | Institution Profile Magazine

Set to celebrate its silver jubilee next year, this K-12 school for children of armed forces officers has earned an excellent reputation for providing holistic, values-based education to its 3,700 students including 1,489 girl children, writes Baishali mukherjee

Sited on a ten-acre eco-friendly campus on the banks of River Hooghly in the British East India Company’s first factory town of Barrackpore (pop.1.5 lakh) — a 90-minute drive from Kolkata — the CBSE-affiliated Army Public School, Barrackpore (APS-B, estb.1998) has earned a statewide reputation for providing holistic, values-based education to its 3,700 students, including 1,489 girls mentored by 130 teachers. In the latest EW India School Rankings 2021-22, this low-profile school is ranked among West Bengal’s Top 40 co-ed day schools and #2 in Barrackpore.

Established over two decades ago by patron Maj. Gen. Jitendra Singh (VSM) and chairman Brig. M.S. Dadwal under the aegis of the Army Welfare Education Society (AWES) — which runs and manages 137 Army Public Schools and 249 Army pre-primaries countrywide — APS, Barrackpore provides K-12 education to children of serving, short service commissioned and retired armed forces officers. Under the AWES charter, a small number (10 percent of total enrolment) of civilian children are also admitted into the school.

“Our objective is to nurture children’s academic, co-curricular, and socio-emotional learning skills in a safe, secure and stimulating environment. Therefore, the curriculum integrates rigorous academics with sports, co-curricular and life skills education. Our mission is to shape students into well-rounded and confident school-leavers equipped with academic, social and life skills needed to succeed in their chosen vocations. With a teacher-pupil ratio of 1:20, we pride ourselves on providing individual attention to all children and also for excellent professional development programmes to our 130 teachers,” says Dr. Moitreyee Mukherjee, an alumna of Calcutta and Kalyani universities who brought two decades of rich teaching and admin experience in reputed schools (Nivedita School, Barrackpore, Air Force Sr. Sec School, Hindon, Ghaziabad) into APS, Barrackpore when she was appointed principal in 2015.
In particular, Mukherjee is satisfied with the school’s smooth transition to online learning after the lockdown of education institutions countrywide on March 25, 2020 following outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. “During the past two years when schooling moved online, our teachers made extraordinary efforts to devise engaging online lessons and worksheets. Therefore, when our children returned to in-person schooling in February, teachers had little difficulty in making good the learning loss of students,” says Mukherjee.

Since APS-B admitted its first batch of 450 pupils and 20 teachers in a modest building 23 years ago, the school has blossomed. Currently, the school’s campus spread over green acres, hosts ten state-of-the-art buildings interspersed with manicured lawns and Chinese herbal gardens. Academic facilities include 100 spacious technology aided learning (TAL)-enabled classrooms fitted with Smart boards, seven air-conditioned and wi-fi enabled labs including four science and three computer labs, three 200-seat multipurpose halls, and two well-stocked junior and senior libraries housing over 17,000 volumes and 27 subscribed magazines and journals.

The school’s sports infrastructure is equally impressive. It includes three sports grounds for football, cricket, basketball, and volleyball. The co-curricular education menu features yoga, music, art and crafts, and nine student clubs (debate, book reading, photography, dance, karate, chess, public speaking, quiz, and theatre) to develop children’s multiple intelligences. Moreover the school’s Child with Special Needs wing equipped with ramps, elevators, disabled-friendly toilets and staffed with two counsellors and a special educator, enables 55 special needs children to realise their full potential.

The APS-B management’s focus on comprehensive education has paid off by way of excellent academic outcomes. Of the 272 students who wrote the CBSE class XII school-leaving exam in February-March 2021, 50 averaged 95 percent-plus with batch topper Lisa Biswas (humanities) averaging 98.4 percent. In the 2020 class X board exam, 37 of 389 students averaged above 95 percent. Moreover, 16 students cleared the West Bengal Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) 2021 to qualify for admission into the state’s 120 engineering colleges, while 13 students cleared NEET for entry into the country’s 605 medical colleges. APS-B has also been conferred several awards and encomiums including the Telegraph School Award for Excellence 2021 and the Chief of Army Staff 2020 trophy for academic excellence.

“Although I am fairly satisfied with the development and evolution of APS-B, continuous improvement is our mantra. Therefore, we have drawn up a strategy to improve our performance under every parameter of school education excellence in the EW India School Rankings. During the past two months, our governing board has sanctioned upgrading of infrastructure including inauguration of a Sensory Play Park for special needs children,” says Mukherjee.

ADMISSION & FEES

Army Public School, Barrackpore is a K-12 co-ed day CBSE-affiliated school. The school primarily provides education to wards of serving, short service commissioned and retired armed forces officers with a small number (10 percent of total enrolment) of children of civilians also admitted.

Admission into class I is through an interview/interaction. From class II onwards, admissions are against vacancies and a written admission test is mandatory.

Tuition fee (annual): Rs.34,440

For further information, call 33 25932317; e-mail: [email protected]

Also Read: Army Public School, Shillong

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