NEW DELHI: School ties are just as strong for government schools and their alumni will do plenty for their institutions. An online alumni registry set up by the directorate of education in the summer of 2014 contains offers of scholarships, book and stationary donations, internships and jobs, legal aid and health-checks. Alumni have offered to help modernize libraries, tutor kids for free and fix laboratories.
"First I will start automating the library. By automating the library, I will provide various library services based on networking and internet... The school library will become a modern library," writes Jai Prakash Singh. He graduated from MB Road GGSSS Sector I, Pushp Vihar, in 1990 and started working at a Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi library in 2000. Ritu Ahlawat, geography teacher at Miranda House, Delhi University, wants to "assist school in [upgrading] of geography lab and conduct a small workshop/lecture for students and teachers." "A day's visit to the college lab can also be arranged for motivated students," she adds. Ahlawat graduated from GGSSS (No.1) Roop Nagar in 1991.The natural desire to hold forth on their own areas of professional expertise has led to some slightly odd though well-meaning offers - an MTNL employee proposes to teach kids about modern telephone exchanges, a RBI official about defective banknotes and an insurance salesman about the different types of insurance. But it also means health camps - Siddharth (no last name), a Ghaziabad dentist, has offered to deal with "any dental problem" at Rajkiya Pratibha Vikas Vidyalaya Ludlow Castle - and legal-aid. Advocate Mahender Singh Yadav willing to make "any kind of contribution along with legal consultancy" to GBSSS Moti Bagh.
The alumni group also includes teachers. Subhankar Chakravorti, a retired government school teacher, wishes to help Sarvodaya Bal Vidyalaya (No.1) at Sarojini Nagar, which he left in 1966, "promote e-portal in education, so that needy student[s] can have easy access to free study materials." Several have suggested financial assistance - travel agency director, Pradeep Kumar can organize financial aid for students pursuing a medical or engineering degree; civil judge Rachna Tiwari Lakhanpal can "sponsor one needy student," Basant Gupta, director of a private school, can "start a scholarship for students who get admission in SRCC (Shri Ram College of Commerce) Delhi and IIM (Indian Institute of Management) Ahmedabad"; and chartered accountant Virender Kumar can supply "books for science student of weaker section seeking to do medical course - one student per year (IX, X, XI, XII)."
Encouraged by successful use of alumni resources by the Government Boys' Senior Secondary School (No.1) in Shakti Nagar to add assets, Padmini Singla, director, education, had set up a "Delhi Govt School Alumni" registry online in the summer of 2014. The registry now has over a 1,000 registered alumni; the east district (there are 13 school districts in all ) has the highest number of registrations - 193. Their number is a tiny fraction of the total number of government school alumni in the city - Delhi government runs 1,008 schools - but many alumni are willing to spare both time and money for their schools. The majority wants to counsel but there's also the odd alumnus like Akhilesh Kumar from SBV (Prem Chand), Pocket II, Mayur Vihar Phase I, who will "be happy to work for clean and garbage-free school and nearby places."