Revolutions are happening in education sector in Tier II cities of India. New generation of women edupreneurs is responding to genuine needs of students and teachers in ways not thought of earlier. Young highly-qualified edupreneurs are taking the opportunities by the horns and introducing institutional management reforms, new technologies and pedagogies. Meet Ms. Palak Tiwari Gaikwad, Director, Little Kingdom chain of schools, Jabalpur, under whose leadership The Little Kingdom Senior Secondary School has flourished into one that has been recently ranked as 6th most high potential emerging school of the country by Education World. Also, her Little Kingdom Preschool has been recognized as the Best Preschool of the country city wise by Education Today. She is also actively involved in spreading awareness on effective parenting and empowering women in the field of education and social causes.
Palak always wanted to pursue media as a field of education to enlighten the darkest section of society. She pursued Bachelors in Electronic media from Amity University and completed her Master in Mass Communication in 2012 from Makkhanlal Chaturvedi University, Bhopal, as a university topper. She served as Program Head in the prestigious United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in 2010 for developing Community Radio Stations all across Madhya Pradesh to raise awareness on the reproductive health issues and curtail mortality rates amongst the women population of tribes of Madhya Pradesh, especially dealing with Baigas , Gonds and Bheels.
A multifaceted professional, Palak ventured into the education sector after her marriage with edupreneur Mr. Udit Gaikwad in 2012. She became the Director for Little Kingdom Senior Secondary chain of schools focusing relentlessly on improving teaching and learning with very effective professional development of all staff. Her restlessness for redefining the education system drives her research in the alternate methodologies and pedagogies to provide the right structure and direction to tackle the difficult process of encouraging student learning and growth.
Palak leads her school with a mission statement of “Students First”. An ardent proponent of experiential learning, she partnered with experts and invested lot of her energies in the formulation of a curriculum that empowers the uniqueness of each student and makes him/her an achiever. As famous educator Dr. John Hibben had said, Education is the ability to meet life situations, Palak stresses on imparting Life Skills Based Education to her pupils through her curriculum to enable them to deal effectively with demands and challenges of everyday life.
She has introduced innovative activities like STEAM Lab in her school. She also associated herself with groups like Jodogyan as a practice to find new workable solutions and making Math an interesting concept based subject. Similarly, she has introduced Giant Microbes (plush scientific toys) as part of classroom teaching to make biology an interactive and engaging subject.
I firmly believe that every child has the potential for success. Such innovative teaching protocols facilitate the different learning styles in the learners.
Awards and Accolades
♦ Excellence in Innovative Professional Parenting by My FM, Jabalpur
♦ Little Kingdom Senior Secondary School ranked 6th MOST HIGH POTENTIAL EMERGING SCHOOL of the country by Education World.
♦ Little Kingdom PreSchool also won the BEST PRESCHOOL of the country city wise by Education Today.
♦ Excellence in Innovative School Education by My FM, Jabalpur.
♦ Shining star award 2017 for innovative education by All India Women’s Club.
I believe, at the end of the day, the most significant key to a child’s success is the positive involvement of parents. So, it is very much important to partner with parents in the learning process.
Keeping this in mind, Palak lays great focus on educating parents and conducting workshops for them and till date she has counselled over 3500 parents. Seeing her work, in 2016, HarperCollins India offered her to be their Parenting Proficient for their brands. She has rendered her services in counselling various parents of different schools associated with HarperCollins.
Her efforts to reach out to children from even underprivileged strata got a big boost when she was appointed as Parenting Proficient for Government Schools of Madhya Pradesh. In this role, she works with the students, parents and the educators of these schools and provides her expertise in the areas of counselling, effective parenting and latest pedagogical approaches. In 2017, she also started writing as a columnist for dailies like DB Post (English daily from the house of Dainik Bhaskar, M.P. edition) and Nai Duniya (M.P and Chhatisgarh editions). She was also appointed as parenting expert for Viva publications India in 2017.
The achievements of Little Kingdom would not have been possible without the support and dedication of our teachers and support staff.
Palak realizes that a competent and well-performing teacher is one of the most important asset for any educational institution. She encourages teachers to pursue professional development, not only to ensure the best learning outcomes for their students but also to be more effective and satisfied in various other aspects of their work. She regularly conducts skills building workshops for teachers not only of her schools but also for those of the other schools she is associated with. She guides and encourages teachers to use real-life examples and scenarios in the classroom to make the learning experience fun, engaging, and meaningful.
The Social Activist
Realizing the fact that media is a powerful tool to cater to the masses for developing a better society, Palak had started her own production house in 2010 and till date has made more than 55 documentaries on social causes.
She served as Media Spokesperson and later, based on her work, was nominated as the Director of Ananya Sewa Sai Samiti, an NGO having hostel and school for the visually impaired in Jabalpur. She worked hard for providing the best education for the blind girls. She proudly shares the achievements of the girls – Out of 36 blind girls, 2 have faced competitive exams and one has cleared it successfully, 12 are pursuing masters, others are pursuing schools and bachelor degree courses. 3 blind girls have also joined the government sector.
Between 2013-2015, Palak served as the president of Innerwheel Club South new generation, Jabalpur, and worked towards empowering women in the field of education and social causes.
From one school in 2012, Little Kingdom chain of Schools has grown to three branches in Jabalpur today. She has already ventured beyond Jabalpur and has been associated with Kangaroo Preschool, Gwalior, as a partner since 2013, serving the city with the best pedagogies. She is also an outreach partner for Nature Nurture Eduserv Pvt Ltd through which she is promoting the curriculum in other schools. She is currently partnering with Brainchild Academy, Mandla, to design their curriculum and there are 5 more schools in the pipeline where she will be offering her expertise in curriculum development. She plans to further expand her work and services in Tier II and Tier III cities and create happy, competent and content learners for a better and strong nation.