By Daniel Curry 

What are the attributes of a top school in Gurgaon? How do parents make a choice of school with so many options? With so many schools advertising why they should be selected, how can we filter out the fluff?  There are some keys to keep in mind. Hopefully you will find this short guide helpful as you search for the best school in Gurgaon for your child.

How important is the board?

First, the choice of board is probably less important than you think.  In my years of working in different boards and curricula, what I’ve come to realize is that how the school instructs is more important than which curriculum they use. For example, I’ve been to many schools as an evaluator for various accreditation agencies. I’ve seen very good IB schools and very poor IB schools. I know here in Gurgaon there are very good CBSE schools and very poor CBSE schools. Rather than getting focused on the specific board, you should focus on how the school implements the curriculum.  What is the pedagogy and what instructional strategies are used?

How important is aligning and training teachers with the New Education Policy 2020?

Schools should be aligned with the goals set out in the National Education Policy (NEP). Is the school stuck in traditional/ineffective approaches? Where are they on their journey to alignment? This shift requires schools to ensure their teachers are well trained in modern instructional practices. It moves away from having a lecture and memorization based system which has been recognized as ineffective. NEP wants schools to prepare students for the real world by encouraging progressive methodologies like project based learning, inquiry based learning, experiential learning, and Problem Based Learning (which incorporates all the above). 

Is the school teaching real world learning and skills

How does the school develop critical thinking and problem solving skills? Are there opportunities for students to collaborate as they take ownership of their learning? Are subjects taught discretely or, as in real life, are subjects dealt with in an interdisciplinary way? We know that as workers ourselves, we need to work collaboratively in teams and apply our knowledge of various disciplines to solve problems we face at work. How well implemented is this approach in the school?

Are the teachers teaching effectively?

Top schools in Gurgaon will open their doors to you and be transparent about their approach to learning. Observing a class will give you great insight into the reality of the school. When observing, look for who is doing the talking and the work? Is the teacher doing the talking and the students sitting idly? Or are the students talking, working, and learning?

How open is the school to parents?

If the school is not willing to be open, that speaks to the culture. The best schools have a culture of openness and collaboration with parents. They work with parents to create the best possible educational experience and outcomes for the students. Parents should have open channels of communication with teachers, coordinators, and the principal. For example, our school has a parent council, a cafe committee made up of parents and cafe staff, weekly coffee sessions with small groups of parents, regular parent surveys on a variety of topics, and many more. 

Are the school (and faculty) warm and approachable?

Another important aspect of culture is how you and your child are treated. Is the school welcoming?  Do the students feel loved and cared for by the teachers? Are there personal connections or are teachers distant and unapproachable? Is the culture one of compassion, empathy, and joy? Does the school incorporate these soft skills and character development into the program, or is it just focused on academic performance?  

If you are seeking the best school in Gurgaon for your child, these questions will get to the heart of the issue. Most good schools have comparable infrastructure. What sets them apart is the fundamental quality of teaching and learning. 

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