Students attend the panel discussion on academic safety at Kerala Samajam Model School on Thursday. (Bhola Prasad)
Kerala Samajam Model School organised an interactive session on academic safety — an initiative that involves helping schoolgoers and parents understand various causes of stress and how to handle it — on its campus on Thursday.
The initiative, spearheaded by the school’s Safe Club, had a panel comprising four student representatives from classes VI to IX; parents Sujata Ganguly and Vinod Poddar, teachers-cum-counsellor Rajan Kaur and Vrinda Suresh and TMH clinical psychologist Manoj Sahoo.
Chandra Sharan, Tata Steel executive and founder of safety outfit Safe Club and socio-cultural organisation Basera, graced the event as special invitee.
Principal of the host cradle Nandini Shukla was also present and students of the school attended the interaction as audience.
Speaking on the occasion, Shukla spoke on how misunderstandings with parents affected the child’s growth in all spheres of life. “Both parents and children are correct from their points of view, but there remains a gap in mutual understanding. We have started this initiative by holding a discussion on the important topic of academic safety. We will address other issues in the future,” she said.
During the interaction, the four student representatives spoke of various kinds of stress they experience.
These included pressure from parents to top the class, difficulty in dividing time between tuition and school and being constantly scolded at home for not living up to family expectations.
The counsellors suggested the young minds to identify their strengths, communicate their problems to parents and convince them to develop realistic schedule.
The counsellors spoke on how parents should have realistic expectations from their wards and must avoid comparison with other children.
They suggested interactive communication as a key to improving the relationship between parent and child.
Parents were advised to talk openly to their wards and let them choose the academic avenues and career opportunities they wished to pursue.
“There is no blueprint for parenting as each guardian is different and so is every child. The ways of handling will be different, too” said Sahoo.
Chandra Sharan emphasised the importance of good inter-personal relationships between parents and how it affected the child.
Sharan added that Safe Club planned to hold similar discussions on topics pertaining to children and their all-round development. “Next on cards are interactive sessions on cyber crime, adolescence problems and how to handle exams,” she said.