A home science graduate of the Acharya N.G. Ranga Agricultural University, Hyderabad, and early childhood education postgrad of the University of Iowa, USA, Ratna Reddy is founder-director of the Chirec Group of three schools in Hyderabad (pop. 7.75 million) which have an aggregate 3,750 students and 480 teachers on their muster rolls. After her return to India in 1988, Ms. Reddy promoted the Children’s Recreation Centre (CHIREC), Hyderabad with a modest investment of Rs.5 lakh to provide holistic early childhood care and education (ECCE) to pre-primary children. With Hyderabad’s aspirational upwardly mobile middle class responding enthusiastically to the high quality globally benchmarked preschool provided by Ms. Reddy, in 1996, a full-fledged CBSE-affiliated K-12 co-ed day school was inaugurated on a 5.5-acre campus in Kondapur. In 2009, a new Chirec International School affiliated with the CAIE, UK, and IB-Geneva examination boards became operational on the same campus.
Over the past 30 years, Ms. Reddy has painstakingly nurtured and developed the Chirec pre-primaries and K-12 schools into top-ranked education institutions respected for their commitment to delivering globally-benchmarked K-12 education to the citizens of Hyderabad. In the EW India School Rankings 2018-19, the co-ed CBSE-affiliated Chirec School and CAIE/IB-affiliated Chirec International are ranked #1 in Telangana and Hyderabad in the categories of co-ed day and international day schools respectively. Similarly Chirec, Jubilee Hills is ranked Telangana’s #1 preschool in the EW India Preschool Rankings 2017-18.
“When I returned to Hyderabad in 1988, I was traumatised to see that children in pre-primaries were pushed into formal education prematurely. In Chirec preschool we pioneered ECCE pedagogies which made early childhood education an enjoyable learning experience. And it was on the insistence of parents who wanted their children to continue to receive liberal and engaging education throughout their school years, that we promoted the Chirec secondary and international schools,” says Reddy.
For having pioneered the provision of liberal, engaging and enabling education for pre-primary to class XII children, Reddy has been conferred numerous national and international awards. Among them: the Excellence in Leadership Award of ICONS of Learning, Singapore 2017; the Asia One White Swan Award for Most Influential Leader in Education in 2016 and the Outstanding Achiever Award 2013 of the FICCI Ladies Organisation, Delhi.
For her extraordinary contribution to the growth and development of school education in Hyderabad and Telangana, and particularly for promoting and establishing globally-benchmarked pre-primaries and K-12 education institutions, and for her commitment to adopting and integrating best international pedagogies and practices within Indian K-12 education, the Board of Directors and Editors of EducationWorld are proud to present Ratna Reddy the EW Outstanding Achievement in Education Leadership Award 2018 and induct her into the EW Hall of Fame of Indian Education.