Minutes of Meeting – CONNECT Session – 22nd March,2017

Minutes of Meeting – CONNECT Session – 22nd March,2017


Date: 22nd Mar,2017

Time: 8:00 A.M. – 10:00 A.M.

Venue: Y-Box, Fountainhead School, Surat.

In Attendance: Vardan Kabra, Ankita Diwekar -Kabra, Bhumika Parmar, Sanjana Amarnani, Ramaswamy Iyer, Swati Agarwal, Suruchi Arora, Namrata Badiani.

Chaired by:

Mr Vardan Kabra – Head Of School

Ms Ankita Diwekar -Kabra  – Dp. Head of School

Ms Bhumika Parmar – Senior School Vice Principal

Ms Sanjana Amarnani – Primary Years Program Coordinator (PYPC)

Mr Ramaswamy Iyer – Head of Administration


Minuted by: Ms Namrata Badiani, Ms Suruchi Arora, Ms Swati Agarwal

Agenda: CONNECT Meeting

07:55 to 08:00 am Settling & Introduction
08:00 am to 10:00 am Discussions and Queries answered
10:00 am Session End


Minutes of the Meeting


Q1 – Format of Predicted Grades and mock exams should be reviewed.
A1 –  We understand the importance of predictive grades. Earlier we had the format of giving high predictive grades – but we realised that high predictive grades led to the low performance of students in the final exams. Low predictive grades are less harmful than the high grades in the long run because the school’s predicted grades are not valued. The predictive grades policy is conservative and will be reviewed as per requirement. High predictive grades do not guarantee admissions.
Mock Exams: This is a more conservative format. We have discussed this format with the Development Manager of India (IB) and our system is fine. It is better to have an objective format rather than having a subjective one.
Senior School
Q2 – Is it appropriate to disclose the Predictive grade to Students.
A2 –  There is no problem in disclosing Predictive grades to students and students must be aware so that students know in which universities they have to apply. Even universities do not have the problem if school discloses the predictive grades to students.
Senior School
Q3 – Internal Assessments comments – The comments given by the teachers should be motivating.
A3 – Internal Assessments is a component where collaborative efforts of the students and the teacher are required. The students are supposed to submit the full drafts on deadline if they do they get properly written comments and if they don’t  the comments are given oral comments only. Students are supposed to meet the given deadlines.
Senior School
Q4 – Availability of qualified Physics Teacher
A4 – We agree to this. We have interviewed many teachers. Some were not qualified and hence were not hired. The others which were appropriate and qualified don’t want to work in schools as coaching classes are far more lucrative. Having said that as on date we have two faculties already on rolls and 2 other people meeting the criteria to join soon.
Senior School
Q5 – Stability of teachers
A5 – The teachers who were appointed got trained here and then left the school and are conducting personal tuitions. We agree to this that stability of teachers is an issue, we are looking at a policy where we will be getting an undertaking signed from parents that they will not be sending their children to teachers who have left the school and are conducting tuitions. We are also contemplating in hiring a law firm for signing contract with teachers, but it will be difficult to enforce the contract.
Senior School
Q6 – Visiting faculties should be approached.
A6 – We have hired visiting faculties – but they could not meet the DP requirements.

Visiting faculty cannot give valuable and prompt feedback to students for their work, which is one of the requirements of DP.

Q7 – How many students led groups/circles exist in the school?
A7 – There are a bunch of events where students take initiative. To name a few, we have the students council, Bal Mela, FS MUN, etc. We are looking at starting INTERACT club.
Students have play time slots to plan these events but it is interest based – most of the students want this slot as a free time. We are open to proposals from students – They can run their own club as far as they meet the prescribed school parameters.
Whole school
Q8 – Current Status of International Exposure given to students.
A8 – We had an exchange programme with Sreenidhi International School and Silver Oaks School, Hyderabad this year. The students interact with other schools for their subject projects like Science projects, GP projects, etc. MUNs are also a platform for students to get exposure. Students also got international exposure through sports events like Hungary Football and other Interschool Events.
There was a Canadian exchange program, but it was not accomplished due to high fees and less student participation.
Whole school
Q9 – Are we involved with SMC for the mosquito issue.
A9 – We are taking all the possible protective measures. We have our own fogging machine and fogging is done on regular basis. The drawback is, we have water fields along the school boundaries, thus making it difficult for us to manage the mosquito menace.
Comment by the inspection officer of Dengue Mosquito: The measures taken by our school are appropriate.
Q10 – There should be a screening of potential students before the final AS/PS Selection.
A10 – There is a discussion with AS/PS students before making a specific selection and students are guided for this by the coaches/arts teachers.We have students who are focused towards a particular sport and are excelling in their respective fields.
Beyond a point, we cannot force the students for a specific selection. Ultimately the choice is of the student/parents.
Whole School
Q11 – Athletic as PS has been removed from Grade 7.
A11 – This was an error on our end. Athletics has now been added back to grade 7 as a PS option.
Senior School
Q12 – New teachers to be clear with the school’s philosophy.
A12 – It is difficult to standardise teaching. Some teachers are excellent in classroom management or content knowledge, whereas some are excellent at student rapport. We all are individuals with differences. Teachers are involved in the rigorous training process and we have TLs/Coordinators to look at the quality of the curriculum and teaching.
Whole School
Q13 – Ratio of teachers interviewed and selected.
A13 – The most important aspect of hiring teachers is that they should be apt and should adapt IB Philosophy. We process approximately 800 resumes every year and  on an average, out of 10 teachers who are interviewed, 2 are selected – this ratio varies from PYP to SS.
Q14 – Written Homework should be increased
A14 – Language and Math worksheet are given as homework on every weekend. In Grade 5 and Grade 6, the major focus lies on the writing process, which enhances their writing skills; whereas Grade 1 to Grade 4 focus on reflective writing.
Primary Years
Q15 – Discipline/Uniform Policy.
A15 – Reg long hair for boys It is allowed as per policy. The hair should either be tied with a rubber band or pinned. This policy is improvised as we promote gender equality. We have changed policies over years as per requirement.
Reg discipline We have taken cognizance of how students respond to teachers with respect to tone and language, especially in the transition years (Grade 5 to Grade 9). If students disrupt the class, immediate actions are now taken.
We have changed the discipline policy and have empowered teachers to take corrective steps within the specified parameters.
We also have a team looking at improving discipline for the 2 PM bus route issues on a daily basis. For the 4:50 PM route we have Senior School teachers looking at it.
Whole School
Q16 – The homework is not being checked on the same day or next day.
A16 – We take this feedback and will surely work on it.
Primary Years
Q17 – Many parents are changing school for several reasons
A17 – Writing: Our students are better prepared for writing (entrance exams). Our students write approximately 60,000 words including extended essays and IA in the whole year. Our students excel in research work and their research skills are being appreciated by international universities (batch of 2016), which is a prerequisite in today’s era.
Faculties: Our teachers go through training and even attend international workshops. We cannot compare the teaching ability of teachers to other schools as it varies from state to state. For faculties, there is no comparison benchmark. If we are looking at the International Faculties as a benchmark, the fees ratio would differ.
Career prospects: NLU does not accept predicted grades for the admission unless you hold the final mark sheet, thus the students opting law are more likely to change the school. The predictive grades are accepted by all entrance exams (NIIT, AIEEE).
70% of our students have got through The Diploma Programme. As a school, we have identified the areas of improvement and are working on it. Some students could not get through The Diploma Programme, this is because they had opted for subject combinations which were not recommended by our School Career Counsellors.
Senior School
Q18 – PTC & Connect improper communication
A18 – We will look into our communication method.
Q19 – Issues at front desk
A19 – We agree and are working on making front desk communication effective.
Q20 – Tuition Policy
A20 – We have moved from last year’s “No tuition Policy” to “Recommend tuition policy” and we still maintain this stand. There are some cases where students don’t go to tuition, but still are performing very well in academics.
Senior School
Q21 – Students attending Vedic maths and English classes
A21 – Vedic Math: Our viewpoint on Vedic Math is, that it will be helpful only up to a certain limit. We are not against Vedic math if students want to learn they can, but students will still require calculator skills.
English Enrichment: For English, we think students can go for comprehension, conversation, speech and drama classes but they shouldn’t be sent for grammar classes.
We suggest you should take your individual decision rather than getting influenced by others.
Whole School
Q22 – Current Status of PSAT.
A22 – Since last 2-3 years, we are conducting PSAT for Grade 9 in Term 1. We do prepare/guide students for PSAT and it is compulsory for all the students to appear for the exam.
Senior School
Q23 – Concern for Security issue.
A23 – Security system is not foolproof yet and we will work on it to improve it.
We appreciate your feedback and it is possible that the security guard might have forgotten to issue bearer card.
Q24 – Sports Management at School – E.g Khel Mahakumbh, Sports Day, No national level coach, Appreciation for the students
A24 – Sports Day: Understanding of sports day differs from person to person. It is noticed that by the time the student reaches higher grades, their interest level for sports decreases. Thus, we are trying for a different format in order to increase student participation in sports day.
Khel Mahakumbh: We take this feedback of mismanagement for the big event like Khel Mahakumbh this year.
Reg appreciation: We display the student achievements on the school notice board. In the upcoming school magazine (within 1 or 2 issues), we will be appreciating students who have won accolades (which will be given to each and every student), thus acknowledging student achievement.
Whole School
Q25 – Increment in fees- Ratio differs
A25 – There are 5 slabs (Nursery, Jr.Kg to Sr.Kg, Grade 1 to Grade 6, Grade 7 to Grade 10, Grade 11 to Grade 12)

The reasons for differentiated fees are:

  • School duration
  • Amount of resources
  • No. of teacher required
  • Experience / Education of teachers
  • Inflation in economy


The Principal thanked the parents for attending the meeting and informed that the next round of meetings for the Connect would be as per the school Academic Planner.


The meeting adjourned at 10:00 a.m.


Comments are closed.