Raj And Nalini Sharma To Support Transformational Program At Thirthapathi Higher Secondary School In Ambasamudram, Tamil Nadu

The multi-year grant will enable AIF’s Digital Equalizer Way of Teaching to enhance student learning and improve school infrastructure

October 27, 2020 – Boston, MA / Chennai, TN.: The American India Foundation with support from Boston-based couple Raj and Nalini Sharma, today announced the implementation of AIF’s Digital Equalizer Way of Teaching in Thirthapathi Higher Secondary School in Ambasamudram, Tamil Nadu, to strengthen the learning outcomes of the enrolled 720 students, over the course of three years.

On learning about the aged roofs, outdated toilets and overall lack of adequate equipment and running electricity in the school, Raj and Nalini Sharma, founding members of the AIF New England Chapter, decided to partner with AIF to holistically improve this educational institution, with a special emphasis placed on technology-assisted learning. They have pledged support over three years (2020 to 2023) to honor the legacy of their late father Dr. R.K. Sharma, son of late S.V.Kailasanatha Iyer Of Ambasamudram, who grew up in Ambasamudram and attended Thirthapathi Higher Secondary School. The school, set up in 1899 in a small village, has a notable list of alumni including late Justice Ratnavel Pandian, IPS Officer S.A. Subbaiah, and Justice HR Krishnan.

On the occasion, Raj and Nalini Sharma said, “We’re delighted to be able to support this school at a time when it is most needed. While one remembers the benefits of technology in education during a time when students are unable to physically attend classes, we often overlook the role it can play during ‘normal’ times. We recognize the need to elevate the level of education and equalize access to technology for all students, especially in a time where the narrative surrounding learning is undergoing vast changes due to the ongoing pandemic.”

Added Nishant Pandey, CEO of the American India Foundation, “We’re deeply appreciative of this generous grant from Raj and Nalini Sharma, AIF’s long-time Boston-based supporters. The holistic school transformation program will integrate technology with collaborative project-based learning, while at the same time, it will also contribute to the infrastructure development in the school. We’re hoping that the impact from these dual interventions will empower students with knowledge and skills to be successful in life.”

The Headmaster of the school, Mr V Srinivasan says, “We are very grateful to AIF and the donor for choosing to support our school. It will enable this age-old institution to re-invent itself in terms of infrastructure and academics. We expect our students to be motivated by digital education and show improved learning outcomes, leading to prized alumni of the school.”

Under this intervention, efforts will be directed towards improving Thirthapathi Higher Secondary School’s infrastructure, transforming the teaching methodologies with digital and financial literacy and STEM education. The proposed activities of this project also include infrastructure improvement such as renovation of classrooms and toilets, new equipment for a science lab, setting up a Learning Resource Center, Computer Lab and Robotics Lab. This initiative will lead to the implementation of the DE Way of Teaching, which is a student-centric teaching methodology. Through this intervention, all types of learners will be engaged and encouraged to embrace technology integration, project-based learning and reflection.

About the American India Foundation (AIF)

The American India Foundation is committed to improving the lives of India’s underprivileged, with a special focus on women, children, and youth. AIF does this through high impact interventions in education, health, and livelihoods, because poverty is multidimensional. AIF’s unique value proposition is its broad engagement between communities, civil society, and expertise, thereby building a lasting bridge between the United States and India. With offices in New York and California, twelve chapters across the U.S., and India operations headquartered in Delhi NCR, AIF has impacted 6.7 million lives across 26 states of India. Learn more at www.AIF.org.

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