Higher Education

To achieve our mission, we endeavor to provide a holistic education - always mindful of each child's unique intelligence and personality. As our children come from varied backgrounds, the educational programs are designed to be accommodating , sound, flexible and dynamic - consistently seeking to address a wide range of challenges and needs. With the fast changing socio-economic conditions in exile and the risks of cultural assimilation, maintaining a high quality of education for Tibetan children has assumed a far greater significance and urgency in recent years.
The Tibetan Children's Village Schools follows the 10 plus two system of education of the host country and affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education, New Delhi
Curriculum and Educational Programs
TCV believes that every child is an asset ! Since most of the children under our care are orphans, semi-orphans, destitute and those who come from Tibet. Right after the beginning we have taken a parental responsibility for our children and our support to the children does not end when a child leaves a Village or School. Our purpose is to ensure that every child is able to stand on his /her own feet and contribute to the community when the time comes.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama has mentioned time and again that the children are the future seeds of Tibet and therefore a holistic education is vital for them. Hence, our top priority has always been that these future citizens are equipped with a meaningful education in all professional fields to contribute to the development of future Tibet and cherish its rich culture.
As we reflect on the work of TCV, we are happy to see so many of our educated youths doing some outstanding work within our exile community in various services - ranging from doctors, engineers, teachers, civil servants to health workers, farmers, artisans etc. And of course, many of them have become their own responsible parents, capable of bringing up their own children as Tibetans and good human beings. We are proud to say that many have returned to work in TCV after completing their higher education as well.
TCV has come a long way in achieving its aims of creating a fully integrated community. Today the Tibetan Children's Villages is the largest autonomous educational organization in the Tibetan community in exile. An overview of the educational programs and curriculum is given below.
Montessori Education
At the Pre-Primary level between 3 to 5 years of age TCV is the first Tibetan school to introduce Montessori Method of teaching way back in the early 1970s. This method of teaching through play way means and skill development at an early age was found most suited for our children. In order to make the teaching more effective, TCV trained teachers in Montessori Method and continues to train and organize in-service training programs. With the experience of TCV today all Tibetan schools in exile follow the same curriculum as designed by TCV. The Montessori Education Centre is now moved to the Dalai Lama Institute for Higher Education in Bangalore from July 2010.
Tibetanisation Program
In the early years Tibetan schools in exile had to follow the Indian school curriculum as there was no special curriculums designed to suit to the educational needs of the Tibetan children in exile. If our children are the future seeds of Tibet as envisioned by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, it is important that we provide an education that benefits them to grow up as Tibetans learning our language, history, culture and religion which is missing in the Indian school curriculum.
His Holiness emphasized that the school curriculum be redrawn to cater to the above needs and thus in 1985 TCV spearheaded the Tibetanisation program as a pilot project. Since then the Tibetanisation program is followed at the junior school level in all TCV schools and from 1994 in all other Tibetan schools in exile with endorsement from the Ministry of Human Resources, Govt. of India and Department of Education of the Central Tibetan Administration.
The Tibetanisation program, in keeping with His Holiness' vision and that of UNESCO declaration "Children should receive primary education in their own mother tongue," the medium of instruction is made in Tibetan language which makes it much easier for the children to understand the subject matter. While English is taught as a second language all other subjects - Science, Social Studies, Mathematics etc. are all in Tibetan language.
In order to prepare the necessary textbooks TCV established the EDUCATIONAL, DEVELOPMENT AND RESOURCE CENTRE (EDRC) and today all the textbooks from Classes I to V are published from this centre and distributed to all Tibetan schools in exile. Committees are formed for different subjects with involvement of our school heads and subject specialized teachers having many years of experience to draw out the curriculum content either as a new or for any revision of existing textbooks on a regular basis. These are then published by the EDRC.
Secondary School Education
From Class VI onwards the medium of instruction is changed from Tibetan in English language to gradually prepare the students in appearing for the Secondary Education exams at the class X CBSE. But up to class XII while Hindi in classes VII and VIII. The curriculum followed is that of the National Council for Education, Research and Training (NCERT).
Up to Class VIII, TCV schools use all the flexibility and freedom permitted by the Central Board of Secondary Education, New Delhi, to introduce changes in educational material that is relevant and meaningful for our children. A lot of emphasis is placed on children having hands-on experience in the various subjects and on the application of learning in real life situation. Stress is placed on children doing projects, group projects, class projects, school-wide projects.
Senior Secondary Education
While up to Class X it is more of a general education but at the Senior Secondary Level i.e. Class XI and XII the students branch out in three main streams - Science, Commerce and Humanities subjects depending on their career choice and higher education at the University level. The Science stream is again bifurcated into medical and non medical streams.
At the end of class XII students appear in the Senior Secondary Exams of the CBSE and thereafter enter into College or University admission within India
Academic Calendar
A child's day in any TCV schools is busy right from 6 o clock in the morning till 9 pm at night. We believe in a holistic education. Given the variety of backgrounds and the range of intelligence and personalities of our children. TCV schools offer a balanced school day, which stimulates the children physically, emotionally and intellectually. This balance provides them with a wide range of social and practical skills, which help them in their growth.
With the above objectives in mind the whole year's academic session common in all TCV schools is framed during the annual meeting of the EDUCATION DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL (EDC). In general, the academic session starts in the beginning of the March and ends in mid December each year with 10 days of summer break in June and around 2 months of winter holidays from mid December. The academic session is divided into two terms (w.e.f. 2010) - 1st term from March to June and 2nd term from July to December.
TCV Common Exams
TCV Common Exams are conducted as per resolution passed by the EDUCATION DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL (EDC) in meeting the below objectives:
1.to bring about continuity and consistency in the academic curriculum of the schools.
2.to improve teaching and learning in the schools through the feedback based on the evaluations.
3.to develop proper habits of knowing how to sit for examination to share educational experiences - both content and process through the examinations and interaction of teachers.
The common exam is conducted at the class V and VIII level in all TCV schools. The subjects tested are Mathematics, Tibetan, English and Science. Schools/individual students excelling in the exams are awarded Academic Rolling Trophies and certificates during the TCV founding anniversary.
Pass and Promotion Criteria
TCV schools pass and promotion criteria is not simply testing and grading the students at the end of the year but goes much deeper into the whole person of the student's ability, aptitude, age and other factors that deem it necessary. It is this endeavor to look at the child holistically that is the foundation of TCV schools pass and promotion criteria.
In general, the following assessment and evaluation policies are laid out:
CLASS I to II There will be no formal testing for this classes at the primary level
CLASS III to V Continuous assessment policy and the grading system as worked out in the EDC meeting is implemented.
CLASS VI to VIII Schools implements the Middle School grading system of the CBSE.
CLASS IX to XII Schools implements the assessment system of the CBSE.

How You can Help

If you are in the US, you can make a tax deductible donation by visiting the website of Tibet House California.


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