SIS, “Distinctively excellent”.
Shantiniketan Indian School, which was established in Qatar in 2000 by a group of Indian philanthropists to provide quality education with affordable fee, was taken over by the present management in August 2008 under the Chairmanship of Mr. Ganem Saad M Al Saad Al Kawari, whose visionary leadership is visible in two other reputed schools in Qatar – Al Maha Academy and Al Jazeera Academy. When the idea of owning and developing SIS to an institution of value-based and skill-based affordable quality education, on behalf of the Centre for Indian Community (previous Indian Islamic Association) to Mr Ganem, my Qatari school classmate from 1979 to 1984 and one of my closest Qatari friends, he wholeheartedly accepted it as part of his social responsibility and he publicly announced that commitment in the inaugural ceremony of the new Barwa Campus in 2011.
I was given the opportunity to lead the management committee with the special task to develop SIS from an underdeveloped institution to a “Centre of Excellence”, the vision that was later redefined as “distinctively excellent education”. Our friendship which started during our school days and the social commitment that we imbibed during those days has been the link for developing this distinctively excellent school and joining hands in different social activities. Peace (سلام) and prosperity (رقي) in this life and the life here after has always been the ultimate goal.
Since 2011, SIS has made tremendous growth in all areas and the resultant Quality education benefits all its stakeholders – students, parents, staff and the community. The benefits are not limited within the boundaries of Qatar but are extended globally through it’s e-Learning portal, open policy of collaboration and sharing the best practices with other schools in Qatar and beyond. The management in the first prize distribution ceremony held in Gulf cinema in 2009, in the presence of principals of other schools, had announced its policy of healthy competition with other schools and to join hands with schools to improve the Indian education system in Qatar”. I take this opportunity to appreciate the school Principals and Managements in Qatar for keeping the collaborative spirit above the competitive spirit and for working together for the development of education in all schools.
Since 2009 we have been reporting in all our Annual Days that we are laying a strong base for a self-developed “SIS BRAND”. We remember the SIS in a small villa at Doha Jadeed in the year 2000. We also remember SIS at Mansura from 2004 to 2010 in a purpose-built premise but 25 out of 50 classrooms were portacabins without the necessary safety system. However, the school has been achieving 100% pass in class 10. We have experienced the present SIS at Barwa village since 2011 with modern facilities including 22 digital services and 22 other facilities for skill development. We provided all these with a comparatively low fee structure without any discrimination in tune with our policy of giving access to every child the right to quality education.
The sincere hard work of 12 years by the SIS family of the students, parents, teachers, admin and support staff, the management and the community with the support of Government Departments made SIS brand a reality today and it is my proud privilege to share this with you with extreme happiness and satisfaction.
The value and skill based education that molded the basic stones of the SIS brand “uniquely excellent; the US trade mark registration of “SIS-Learn Active Learning Pedagogy”, Qatar National School Accreditation, Qatar schools Excellence Award participation, the School Report Card published by Qatar Ministry of Education & Height Education showcasing the excellent performance of SIS with a rating of high level satisfaction from the parents, students and staff, the letter of appreciation received from the ministry of Education and Higher Education stating that SIS scored above global average in International Mathematics and Science study (TIMS 2019), the rising trend of the achievement graph of SIS students in academics, result of benchmark exams like PISSA and Olympiads, achievements in sports, games and art competitions in local, national and global levels; selection of SIS by CBSE as a lead collaborator in the “Hub of Learning 2019”; Honorable Indian President’s National Award for Teachers received by Dr. Subhash B. Nair, SIS principal; the facilitation received by Mr. Shakir Husain, SIS-HOD Social Science from the Embassy of India as best teacher, SIS winning World Education Award 2021 under the category – Innovation in Pedagogical Practices; SIS participation in the sub committees formed by the Ministry of Education to study some of the general issues like the Discipline Policy Guide for private schools, Dropouts from schools and bringing them back to the main stream and School Learning Resources Review Guide; SIS representation in the Education Committee of Qatar Chamber of Commerce; SIS representation in some of the national and international seminars organized by Qatar National Library, Ministry of Culture and Sports, DICID on subjects like: Harnessing Moral Values for Our Time, Asian Cultural Dialogue, Indian Schools – Their journey in educating Indian Expat Community, Challenges of e-learning in Covid Pandemic; the initiatives in collaboration with other schools for the continuous development of the quality of Indian education directly with schools and through Indian Schools Principals Forum and Presidents Forum; CBSE schools Qatar Cluster and CBSE Gulf Sahodaya initiatives; and above all, the SIS value based “culture” reflected in the society in and out of Qatar through the daily life practices of SIS students are some of the reflections of SIS being established as a specific brand.
Despite the challenges posed by Covid-19 Pandemic, SIS was able to continue achieving high performance in many areas which shows the ability of the team and the system in utilizing challenges as opportunities. The recent EFQM model performance evaluation “Results” looked strong in most of the areas although the “Enablers” have room for further improvements. SIS is now functioning within the frame of 10-year strategic plan. Continuation of ‘self-developed’, ‘distinctively excellent’ branding processes will be one of the focus areas. Becoming more “system driven” and ensuring further development and team building of the leadership and staff to achieve the targets based on the defined KPIs in the strategic plan is therefore another highly prioritized task, not only for ensuring sustainable growth of the institution but also to bring out all the “nearly expected results” of the last 12 years development efforts aiming to reach it’s dream of “Distinctively Excellent” brand.
While assuring continuous support and commitment of the management, let me sincerely remind that the involvement of every member of SIS family – students, staff, parents and the community is significant in further development of SIS brand strengthening its distinctiveness in its excellence.
“We wish the SIS BRAND and its values to be spread to the entire world through our Alumni with a mission of education for all for development (تنمية), security (امن) and peace (سلام).
K.C. Abdul Latheef