On the occasion of International Teachers Day, October 5, 2021, Tech Avant-Garde hosted a symposium called ‘Magnum Opus’ at Knowledge L’avenir Conclave, to acknowledge the revolutionary works of 54 Change Makers – principals of educational institutions across India who changed their schools (ICSE, CBSC, IB and State Board) from the physical to digital learning in record-breaking time.
These Change Makers are the true inspirational visionaries who saw a future for not only the cosmopolitan urban cities but also the rural backdrop of India They have made pure history by handholding their Teachers and Students alike in administering the right blend of new-age knowledge, wisdom and guidance to lead them into a brightly lit path of the future.
Knowledge L’avenir Conclave had invited Dharmendra Pradhan Hon’ble Education Minister Government of India, Renuka Singh, Hon’ble MOS Tribal Affairs, Govt. of India, Dr Sangamitra Maurya, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha, Antony Salcito, Vice President Education Microsoft, Worldwide and other dignitaries to the Magnum Opus symposium for acknowledging the good work done by the ‘Change Makers’
The Symposium began with the illustrious Ali Sait, CEO, Tech Avant-Garde addressing luminous dignitaries invited by saying “I acknowledge Changemakers who have toiled hard in the Pandemic to ensure education never stops. They have trained their teachers, students and parents through the learning process. Today in this august gathering consisting of ministers, parliamentarians, industrialists, schools, principals, teachers, parents, students and community, let us take an oath to help our underprivileged schools, handholding them and making our education system more equitable and democratize”
Roshini Kumar, President, Lycee Corps., took over to articulate a generous welcome to all the esteemed guests. And proceeded to say “Change Makers are principals from schools who were honoured by Carte Blanche Digital Schools. These schools have subscribed towards digital transformation and holistic learning programs where school teachers have been trained in digital teaching skills and are conducting online classes daily for all grades so that education never stops. All teachers are MIE, ‘Microsoft Innovative Educators’ certified.” She also pointed out “Change Makers must encourage their staff to transform themselves to be relevant in the new age learning. Learning will be reimagined and be from anywhere and any place and any device and there will be only one degree of separation between learning and education.”
Smt. Renuka Singh, Hon’ble MOS Tribal Affairs, Govt. of India said “I am happy to know that Change Maker Magnum Opus is actively helping the tribal community, especially the children to make big changes in their lives by bringing in technology right at the doorstep and making sure they move forward in this Modern and ever-changing world and it will benefit the education of digital transformation in the tribal areas. Each principal is adopting five underprivileged schools which will truly help to change and improve the quality of the education in the tribal areas.”
Dr Sangamitra Maurya, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha added “It is heartening to see these 54 principals of leading educational institutions of our country participate in the selfless and sincere Service to the fruition of the dream of digitalization of formal education, supported by Microsoft and its global Partner Tech Avant-Garde. We look forward to seeing you continue the good work in the future in the transformation of your schools in their digital journeys to make ‘Connective Learning Community’ a medium to emancipate education from the shackles of old hackneyed systems into a brighter and more efficient order of the day. You are a shining example to other primary leaders such as yourself, across the length and breadth of our nation and we are convinced that with you plunging into the fray, others will readily follow and put India on the map, at par with global education, especially now more than ever with the ongoing pandemic.”
Antony Salcito, Vice President – Education Microsoft, Worldwide said “The last couple of years we have reaffirmed the resilience, the passion the commitment of our Educators and School Leaders but also the necessity of having innovation in a world of education that is completely changing and evolving across the world. RESPOND: Our first response to the early pandemic was the safety of students, Faculty and Staff. Priority to keep operations running and react to Remote Learning. RECOVER: Then came the recovery phase where we built on lessons, learnt during crisis and transitioned to a post Covid world. REIMAGINE: Then came the redesigning of academics and operations which will be greater post pandemic than ever before. While the technology components are important, we are predominantly making a fundamental people’s transformation focussed on building culture that supports change.”
Christina Thoresen, Director Worldwide Education Industry Strategy, Microsoft opined “It is the most challenging of times and yet the possibilities for growing now are increasing in remarkable ways. You are the Transformers who are changing the future. Each of you is integrating technology into your teaching practices. You are the education learning experts and have the best resources to expanding the learning opportunities for each of your students that will enable them to socially and emotionally develop the skills they need to be successful and productive members of society to ultimately achieve their potential.”
Sonja Delafosse, Global Education Programs Manager, Microsoft said “We continuously ensure that we have online learning that is free and tied to the best teaching methods. Please use the Microsoft tools in the best possible ways. Our teams work to bring the best content to all of you and our global tech partner, Tech Avant-Garde helps support and nurture educators around the world. We are absolutely thrilled that you are certified M.I.E’s. Congratulations.”
Dr Vinnie Jauhari, Director, Education Advocacy Microsoft Corporation India Ltd. opined “Hybrid Learning is relevant in the Indian context because Businesses and Educational Institutions are all embracing Digital Technology to maintain continuity and the N.E.P. opened up an unprecedented opportunity to drive Student Learning outcome. The focus is on skilling, making Students Future Ready, opening doors in learning multiple languages, bringing in equity, accessibility and also modularity in progression in higher education. We are at the cusp of the 4th. Industrial Revolution when more than ever education needs to shift from one size fits all to meet the needs of each individual student. At present millions of students and teachers are continuing with education despite facing challenges. “
Towards the end there was a Panel Discussion where Ali Sait asked pertinent questions.
KV Vincent, National Secretary, ASISC, being one of the Change Makers himself elaborated about his Digital Journey saying “My journey would be comparable to other Principals who faced similar uncertainties. The Pandemic came like a Tsunami and all of us were at a loss regarding how to deal with it. We began regular online classes and took it forward from there. We struggled with the willingness to let go of old traditional ways but advancing forward we also realized there was no going back. Microsoft Teems were an unfamiliar Territory but we began to enjoy connecting through its experience.”
Dr Biswajit Saha, Director, (Training & Skill Education), CBSE said “Thanks to Microsoft and other tech giants who thought beyond the borders, we came together in the times of crisis. The hybrid mode of education will be more conducive for the new generations. We want to cover all 25 K Schools from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and collaborate together so that I.C.S.E. can utilize the strengths of C.B.S.C and vice versa. School Boards across the country need to join hands together to make the Transformation model more visible and if we change it in India it will also make its impact globally. We need to rewrite the story of Education.”
Eddna Samuel, member of the Magnum Opus organizing committee & Director Motif India said “Change Makers” are critical for Digital Transformation of Education. They have to be empowered by giving them Digital Currency to purchase equipment that will transform their school from four walls of the classroom to Hybrid Learning Spaces. I am committed to raise this funding through CSR.”
The entire program was peppered with acknowledgements of the glorified Change-Makers of the Year, the fifty-four Principals who brought about the magnificent change from physical to digitalization of their schools. They are as follows:
- Dr Seema Dutt, D.A.V. Public School, Ambala, Cantt.
- Sudha Madhur, Mind Tree School, Ambala.
- Neelam Ohri, Mind Tree School, Ambala.
- Saman Sherwani, The Blossoms School, Aligarh.
- Brinda Sam, St. Thomas School, Uttar Pradesh.
- Vijayshree Pandey, Dr Virendra S.E.C., Kanpur.
- K.V. Vincent, Huddard High School, Kanpur.
- Sindu Hemanth, Sunshine Worldwide School, Goa.
- Farha Asif. Daruwala, Crescent High School & Junior College, Pune.
- Balvinder Kaur Kooner, Arya Gurukul, Kalyan, Maharashtra.
- RadhamaNI Iyer, Arya Gurukul, Nandivali, Maharashtra.
- Sapna Uppal, Little Aryan’s, Pre K, Maharashtra.
- Shobhana Jha, St. Mary’s High School, Maharashtra.
- Asha Srinivas Reddy, Priyadarshini School, Moshi, Pune.
- Arpita Dixit, Priyadarshini School & Jr. College, Pune.
- Dr. Gayatri Suhas Jadav, Priyadarshini School & Jr. College, Pune.
- Nalini Samuel, The Orbis School, Pune.
- Gunjan Shrivastav, The Orbis School, Pune.
- Lakshmi Vindala, International School, Hyderabad.
- Ramanjula G, Oxford Grammer High School, Hyderabad.
- Fahmidha, Oxford Grammer High School, Hyderabad.
- Fatima Hussein, Oxford Grammer High School, Hyderabad.
- Dr A. Chhalamayi Reddy, Sri Aurobindo Int. School, Hyderabad.
- Kajol Chatterjee, Samsidh Int. School, Vishakhapatnam.
- C. Bhuvaneshwari, Litera Valley Zee School, Hisar.
- Santosh Kanavalli, Subbiah Central School, Tamil Nadu.
- M.D. Gangadevi, Samsidh MLZS, Vellore, Tamil Nadu.
- Ranjit Kumar Mandal, BGS World School, Bangalore.
- Chabbi Mandal, BGS World School, Bangalore.
- Judith Singh, Cambridge Public School, Bangalore.
- Sribala Srinivasan, Carmel School, Bangalore.
- Geetha Mohan, Carmel School, Bangalore.
- Nimmy George, Clarence Public School, Bangalore.
- Sobha Venkateswar, Embassy Public School, Bangalore.
- Abida, Florence Public School, Bangalore.
- Bridgette Mc Gavin, Florence Public School, Bangalore.
- Aruna Iyer, Greenfield Public School, Bangalore.
- Kavitha B.V., Jubilee Int. Public School, Bangalore.
- Sujatha Nagaraj N., Lawrence High School, Bangalore.
- Umadevi N., Lawrence High School, Bangalore.
- Reetu Thapa, NPS, Utrachalli, Bangalore.
- Thomas PJ, Royal Public School, Bangalore.
- Deepthy Madhu, Samsidh MLZS, Bangalore.
- Rekha Sinha, Samsidh MLZS, Bangalore.
- Sangeetha Shenoy, Samsidh MLZS, Bangalore.
- Mamta Chandra, Samsidh MLZS, Bangalore.
- Joice Lobo, Samsidh Mother Teresa, Bangalore.
- Meenu Bhattacharya, TCIS, Sarjapur, Bangalore.
- Roopa Arun, TCIS, Sarjapur, Bangalore.
- Priya Anand, TCIS, Whitefield, Bangalore.
- Usha Iyer, The Greenfield School, Bangalore.
- Usha Ravi, The Regency Public School, Bangalore.
- Y. Padma Sagar, Vagdevi Vilas School, Bangalore.
- Devika Nagaraju, VLS. Int. School, Bangalore.
Towards the end, Ali Sait thanked all the dignitaries who graced the occasion and profoundly enunciated “I congratulate all those who had the foresight to become part of the world’s first ‘Connected Learning Community’, NEP compliant, future-ready and a hybrid learning space. Let us also adopt more underprivileged schools into the hybrid learning system as well. My dream is that one day the Change Makers should be regarded as Nobel laureates.”
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