School Type: Private-Free School, Primary School
Age group: K8
Number of students: 87
Year Elected: 2015
Vidyodaya School is exemplary of a workable and successful model of changemaker education for the tribal communities in India. When both the government, and the tribal community itself, had given up on the education of the tribal child, Vidyodaya demonstrated a system that challenges old school and elitist thinking.
The Vidyodaya School was created towards building a demand for quality education among the Adivasi communities in the Deccan rainforests. Twenty years ago, the Adivasi community in the Gudalur block of villages had systematically lost their language, culture and livelihoods. Alienated from the mainstream, this tribal community was fast losing itself even as the world rampantly modernized. It was at this time that the Vidyodaya School was created - to demonstrate the value of education to the community to adapt itself to modernity.
- Tribal music, both local and global, plays an important function for the school, so that children not only see the beauty and knowledge within their own civilization, but also connect with similar tribal movements across the world.
- The in-house tribal museum and showcase, allows children to identify with their own culture, reinforcing the values of empathy, and tolerance, and the wisdom inherent in generations of Adivasi civilization.
- Using simple strategies, such as appointing grandparents to take the children to and from the school, they increased enrollment three-fold in the course of one year.