Arghya Banerjee Resisted the Temptation of High-Flying IIM Jobs to Develop Young India

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Arghya Banerjee Resisted the Temptation of
High-Flying IIM Jobs to Develop Young India

by A Mondal, 8 November 2016

  • A solitary single-story white school building stands at the centre, encompassed by lush green paddy fields with clusters of silvery clouds drooping over it. It is autumn, and the scene could be just the same anyplace in provincial Bengal — except for the school and its students.
  • We are talking about the Levelfield School in Hosnabad, just about 5km from Suri, the district headquarters of Birbhum. Levelfield, formed in 2010, is the brainchild of educationist Arghya Banerjee, whose dream is to kindle young minds with the power of imagination so that they can develop a perspective to think independently as opposed to rote learning.

  • Here at Levelfield, his inventive approach challenges the traditional practices that urge kids to monotonously memorise the subjects without genuinely understanding the value of what is being taught.

  • Banerjee, an alumnus of IIT-Kharagpur and IIM-Ahmedabad, was greatly awed by the teaching style utilised by IIM. He believes, students should be able to think freely, and their capability to adapt and learn needs to be respected. “Instead of standardized textbooks at the primary level we focus on the development of skills — reading, writing, speaking,” explains Arghya and his wife Ashima, who have both designed the study material for junior classes.

  • The brilliant young man, in his endeavour to transform the education system, is currently focusing his efforts on rewriting old classics such as Prince and the Pauper and Gulliver’s Travels to craft a simplified age-appropriate version that can be included in the school curriculum.

  • The Levelfield School, an award-winning initiative built according to CBSE specifications, will get the board affiliation next year when the school’s first batch moves up to Class VIII.

  • From here, Banerjee, after setting up his dream project in Suri is now dreaming even bigger, planning to take his innovative idea deeper into other parts of Bengal.

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