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School Improvement Mission launched in Guwahati

By Fr. P.D.John, SDB
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Guwahati, Apr. 18. The Salesian Province of Guwahati flagged off DB-SIM ((Don Bosco School Improvement Mission)project on 16th April 2013 at DBI, Guwahati. The scope of the project is to improve the quality of the schools in the province, particularly those located in the rural areas.
Following the clarion call given by the Provincial, Rev. Fr. V.M. Thomas, all the Heads of Don Bosco Schools gathered at DBI for a two-day workshop along with 30 selected teacher-trainees of Don Bosco College of Teacher Education, Tura before officially launching this mission. The Provincial called on all the Salesian principals to return to Don Bosco, to the original charism and mission of working for the poor and the marginalized. He spoke of the pathetic condition in some of our schools where our children can hardly read, much less write or speak. He said that we are geared to this mission as a priority and wanted each and every principal to be passionate about this mission which calls for commitment, dedication, concerted effort and consistent planning. It is high time that we evaluate to see the output, outcomes and the impact of our services, he said. It terms of output, he clarified ''we are doing quite fine but when it comes to the other two aspects, we are far from satisfactory''.

Earlier, at the inaugural programme  of the two-day animation,  Fr. Johnson Parackal, the Executive Director of DBI and the Director of DB-SIM, gave an overview of the Mission informing all present that the objective of the mission was to bring total quality improvement of the educational institutions in a comprehensive and sustained manner focusing on teacher training, orientation of students, meetings of parents, guidance and counseling sessions, remedial coaching, formation of clubs and services and other allied helps required by the school. He also said that the desired objectives of a venture of this magnitude cannot be achieved all of a sudden but requires careful planning, sustained efforts and deep commitment from all stakeholders.

Along with Fr. Johnson Parackal, the Provincial has requested the services of Fr. Joseph Thelekkatt and Fr. P.D. Johny. Don Bosco College of Teacher Education, Tura had recruited 30 of their teacher-trainees and two faculty members for this purpose. They were given adequate training at DBI by experts like Sr. Molly Kaniampadyil, Fr. Joseph Thelekkatt, Dr. Manjuri Sharma, Mrs Mollika Sharma, Mrs Ruth Gomes and Mrs Sonali Deka. The thirty trainees were then send to the various schools for ten days of animation of teachers and students along with their principal after the launch. The Province School-Office will follow up the school performance of DB-SIM through training sessions, animation programmes and data collection.

An evaluation of this mission will be done on 27th April at DBI with the team members and the respective principals of the rural schools of the province.
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