Recently, I visited a new school, Billabong High School that has come up in Hadapsar, Pune. When looking around, I had the privilege to connect with Lisa Asher the founder of Billabong High International School. This interaction was truly insightful and below is a few things that I was personally impressed with.
Story behind Billabong
Lina was working in Australia as a teacher before relocating to Mumbai. When she restarted her career as a teacher in Mumbai, she wasn’t happy with the way education and its process of impartation was prevalent in India and she decided to do something about it. Out of this intention, Kangaroo Kids was born. “Parents quickly saw the difference between a parrot and a child who has undergone the complete development cycle.”
What sets Billabong School apart from others is that they focus on synthesis. They call themselves a life school. “Our kids don’t just stop at memorizing the concepts, we help them to memorize, analyze the concepts, and apply them in real life and synthesis. Most exams are tuned towards looking at what a child cannot do; we do not honor what the child did do. I prefer looking at what is in rather than what it left out” This ensures that we honor and celebrate what the child has understood and then think of ways how we can help them learn what they don’t know.
Taking this vision forward, Billabong High International School has introduced personalized learning apps called Skippytech and Billabox to enable self paced learning.
Billabong curriculum picks the best from various syllabus frameworks and offers a composite, inclusive schooling experience that can touch maximum students. The Hadapsar Billabong High will follow the curriculum of IGCSE and CBSE. The school curriculum has various aspects through which children understand complex emotions that a child is likely to face for eg: bullying. “We want the children to see themselves as an important stakeholder in this world and we want them to know what is their purpose in life, a vision for themselves.”
Billabong International School is offering the best of infrastructure which is focusing on equipping 21st century kids. The curriculum is developed my 80+ strong research team that is focusing on innovating education. No wonder that they have become India’s No. 1 Most Trusted Education Brand (TRA’s Brand Trust Report – India Study 2019, 9000 brands across 16 cities)
As you enter the school, what greets you is a beautiful play area that is secured and colorful. The campus that is built on 2.25 acres has state of the art facilities and technology enabled classrooms. Once you enter the building, there is a sensory play area that has multiple play things which help develop sensory skills in children.
Apart from the colorful interiors and absolutely safe and secure environments, what interested me the most were the motivating messages on every wall! A school that is motivating the child to look beyond the one odd bad day that they might be facing truly impressed me a lot.
- Colorful and secure play area
- Robust backend system to ensure transparency between teachers and parents
- Video and multimedia units in classrooms
- Open access policy
- A well-stocked library
- Well trained teachers and support staff
- Equal emphasis on academic and co-curricular activities.
- Football Field, Swimming Pool, Indoor Sports Arena, Fully functional labs as well as activity rooms.
I had a lot to think about after this interaction. It made me happy that educators are now focusing on the child and are actually considering him/her as a stakeholder than just a job eligible candidate. I hope more and more educators start thinking on the same lines and consider helping children discover their true calling as their life’s purpose.