Undoubtedly, educational leaders today must have strong leadership skills to guide their institutions through crises such as the ongoing pandemic and other serious challenges… and still have enough guidance left for motivating leadership skills among faculty and other staff members. Let us talk about one such personality who in her long academic career has been a source of inspiration and constantly kept herself updated as an empathizer of knowledge, Dr. Anuradha Amos, Principal of St. Thomas’ Girls Senior Secondary School, who continues on her journey – as a value builder and an all-round motivator.
Churning Dreams and Hopes
Having started in the field of academics with a clear aim of imparting multi-disciplinary experiences, and inclusively promoting experiential learning, via utilization of STEM education, Dr. Anuradha Amos propounds an education that combines scientific temper with the happiness quotient. She adds that the school is blessed to have a holiday home in Mussoorie where experiential learning becomes so much more meaningful and satisfying. While preserving the traditions of the school, Dr. Anuradha Amos believes in modernizing the school in all aspects, be it infrastructure, academic goals, co-curricular growth and most of all, an empathetic outlook to society, with special regard to the less privileged. “All this was, and continues to be done, with a deep and unwavering faith in the Almighty,” says Dr. Anuradha Amos, thanking God for giving her the strength she needs everyday, to continue on the path of giving back to society.
Heading St. Thomas’ Girls Senior Secondary School, and taking her roles and responsibilities beyond the set standards, she ensures that every student at the school is assessed and encouraged according to her abilities, converting them into caring and informed citizens. “A light to lighten the world and to make my STS family, a happy and vibrant one, promoting a culture of collaboration”, states Dr. Anuradha Amos, explaining how she works in-sync with all the stakeholders of the school, towards better performances, year after year. Additionally, making it a point that regular assessments are done, latest technologies are implemented, self-assessment and re-planning is carried out, Dr. Amos as the front-woman, has chalked out all the responsibilities accordingly and delegated personnel at St. Thomas, based on their expertise.
Leading with change
With an impressive academic track record, Dr. Anuradha Amos has a PhD (Education) D. Litt credited to her name. Apart from this, she has also published papers, namely Punishment and Qualitative Education at Elementary Level and Competence Level of Regular Teachers & Special Educators in an Inclusive School at Pre- Primary & Sr. Secondary Levels: A Comparative Study. Also, as a strong pillar at St. Thomas, post the dawn of the pandemic, she helped enable teachers, students and parents to cope with the situation, and at the same time realized the dreadful impact it could have on the mental health of all the students, and thus worked wholeheartedly in this regard. Under her leadership, the school organized Khushi Lab sessions and fun activities like Dance, Music, Art, Yoga etc. for the students and the teachers were encouraged to attend Webinars, to keep their spirits high. Personally, she feels that she has evolved greatly in this trying period, and tries her best to – ‘Approach every day as if it’s a new world, because it is!’ Her mission in life, she believes, is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor and some style.
Dr. Anuradha Amos started the St. Thomas’ College for Higher Education in 2013, which runs a Law School and a School for Education, which she felt was a much – needed and natural progression. Under the Community Outreach Program, the college runs a Legal Aid clinic for the community and works with the neighborhood Anganwadi. She tries to make a difference, especially in the lives of the young women with whom she comes in touch, in any and every possible way. Elaborating on this, she adds, “In my school, I have introduced initiatives like Guides, Taekwondo, Atal Tinkering Lab and also encouraged my students to form an all girls’ band. To awaken their sensitivity towards the less fortunate, there are visits to old age homes, blind schools, etc, along with leadership camps’ ‘. Reiterating the words of Malala Yousafzai, she also feels that, “We cannot all succeed when half of us are held back,” and guides generations of young girls to break free and venture out.
Lastly, as an educationist of the 21st century, Dr. Amos is constantly looking for ways to make education dynamic and worthwhile for all the girls at St. Thomas. Also, by keeping pace with societal demands and adapting to the tech and innovations the world has to offer, she wants to remind every girl about their importance in this world, and how this world needs strong women to lead it and guide it. Summing up, she says, “You know you have dreams, and you also know that these dreams can be achieved with patience, perseverance and panache”. She also adds, “Our society may still not be the most progressive in the world, but if you hold fast to your convictions, you can dare to dream. Go ahead…and conquer the world!”.