New Calcutta Bishop seeks guardian-friendly schools

'Schools will be more guardian friendly so that they can understand the requirements of the children in a better way'

By Mita Mukherjee and Jhinuk Mazumdar in Calcutta
  • Published 12.06.19, 5:06 AM
  • Updated 12.06.19, 5:06 AM
  • 2 mins read
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Reverend Paritosh Canning at Bishop House on Tuesday Picture by Sanat Kr Sinha

Schools should be more “guardian friendly” and open more channels of communication with parents, the new bishop of Calcutta said on his second day in office.

“The schools will be more guardian friendly so that they can understand the requirements of the children in a better way,” said Reverend Paritosh Canning, 55, on Tuesday.

“There will be more interactions between teachers and guardians. Our schools have such interactions but there is a need for more. A rapport with guardians is more important for the development of the child. A child’s development is a joint venture between the school and home. They together nurture the students.”

Reverend Canning, who has replaced Reverend Probal Kanta Dutta, was speaking before being “installed” as the 21st bishop of the Calcutta diocese of the Church of North India.

Reverend Dutta was Calcutta’s bishop for 10 months before being transferred back to Durgapur on Monday.

There are allegations that several institutions neither encourage communication with parents nor allow them access to the campus. Parents of children studying at those schools often allege that grievances against the managements go unheard.

The bishop on Tuesday met the heads of all CNI schools — nine English-medium institutions and 14 Bengali-medium ones — at Bishop House.

“I did not mention this (the need for more interaction between parents and teachers) at today’s meeting. At the next meeting, to be held soon, this will be made clear to the school heads,” he said.

The bishop is chairman of the boards of governors of all CNI schools. Some of the prominent CNI schools in Calcutta are La Martiniere, St James’, Pratt Memorial and St John’s Diocesan.

At the meeting with the school heads, the bishop stressed that one of the main objectives of the Church was “to serve society by offering quality education”.

Many of the CNI schools were set up decades ago and the infrastructure — such as classrooms and laboratories — is inadequate compared with the current requirement.

“We cannot give space and we need infrastructure to accommodate more numbers,” he said.

“We have to increase the size of our classrooms. We have standard laboratories but we still need to develop them. Our school buildings are old and most of the classrooms are not big enough.”

Revered Canning urged the principals to take care of underprivileged children.

“I told the school heads that as chairman (of the boards of governors) I should know each and every thing happening in the schools — academic, administrative or financial. Without my knowledge, nothing should happen,” he said.