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Bi-annual Collateral Reports written by the Students and Teachers

Twice a year, first the students write Self-reports on each subject, then the Teachers, Wardens and Tutors also write. Finally there is a Report written by the Principal. The final typed copy is sent to the parents, and a soft copy is also sent by email. Below is an example of a Report, made anonymous, to give the reader some idea of our approach to Education.

A Tutor’s Report

Education comprises 3 areas of concern: first, the intellectual or academic development of the young person. Your son is bright and appreciates learning for its own sake. Good. He has only to communicate much more with the teachers, put aside his shyness and work towards having a good relationship of mutual learning with everyone.

Mr. X (one of the Sholai School teachers) is a passionate teacher who is interested in all the students, but if I were your son, I would not accept his argument: “…we did a fair share of experiments through computer simulations and practicals.”

Teachers often have much to say. But, for a young person to learn Science and understand it deeply, he needs plenty of experience in doing practicals. Preparing for practical classes, is a lot of work, furthermore, students can be careless with the expensive equipment. Still, the teachers and students need to co-operate to do more practicals and to clean up, carefully putting away all the equipment. In that area of mutual co-operation and communication, your son needs to apply himself more seriously.

Second, there is his Physical Education. Do read Mr.Y’s report. Your son is slight and somewhat fey. J. Krishnamurti was like that when young, but the Theosophists put much stress on his becoming healthy and physically fit. I do not know how your son fractured his hand. (His hand recovered quickly...Ed.). Is he inclined to drink ‘soft-drinks’ or eat too much sugary foods? These weaken the bones. In general, he needs to strengthen and develop his body. Plenty of exercise, is required. Is he getting enough protein? Should we consider Homeopathy or the Bach Flower Remedies?

The third aspect of a good education is the emotional aspect. It ties in closely with the intellectual and physical aspects. It is very clear from reading all the Teacher’s and your son’s Self-reports, that he is concerned with “What should be” rather than “What is”.

For example, in almost every subject he demands more classes. “A” (the student), that will be impossible! How will we fit all the extra classes into the timetable? So deal with “What is” and not “What should be”. Also, as you grow older, you need to understand that you have to learn to solve your own problems. You know, there is plenty to learn outside of the classroom, also. Is that not correct?

Most human beings are not concerned with “What is”. They are idealistic, imagining that they can make the world a better place, yet not changing themselves. Or they dream or get “lost in thought”. Learning to be concerned with “What is” requires watchfulness. One needs to be aware of when one is “lost in thought” or dreaming and when one is aware of the world around one, of nature, of the birds, of one’s fears, of the contents of one’s own consciousness, of the people, of those who keep chattering, of those who are self-centered and of those who are helpful. All this is the challenge and work of being aware.

I look forward to meeting a more alert and aware “A”, next semester.