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Pressure to ease with new building: IISD chairman
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 03 - 05 - 2017

Saudi Gazette
DAMMAM — Now that the International Indian School has signed the agreement to construct a new building in a 7,500 square meters land consisting of 120 class rooms, the admission pressure on the school management as well as the community has eased considerably.
The school management is now working on modalities to decide on sections that will be shifted to the new premises. According to Mohammad Abdul Waris, Managing Committee chairman, who initiated the deal and finally signed the contract on behalf of the school, the basic aim of the school is to accommodate as many Indian students as possible. He admitted that the parents and students had faced too many hardship for admission and expressed his committee's determination to redress the problem.
"But the solution will not be found overnight. We are working on several plans and this new building is one of such plans to ease admission pressure and ease congestion in existing classrooms."
He admitted that the classrooms in existing structures were overcrowded and that further increase in strength would have jeopardize safety of students in the classrooms.
Currently IISD has a total strength of 17,500 students down from 18,000 students last year. The school has two large campuses, each housing boys and girls section. In addition the school has rented several villas in closer vicinity of the school.
In 2018 academic session, the school will have this new building of 120 classrooms and as a result the rented villas will be phased out in a gradual manner, the chairman said.
The Ministry of Education (Foreign School section) has initially put a ban on renting of villas for classroom purposes for safety reasons. The ban resulted in closure of several school across the Kingdom as a result the Ministry lifted the ban for some period of time with clear advisory to make arrangement for permanent structures.
Admissions for the new academic year were a major challenge for the school managing committee. Waris said that only with the support of the Saudi Ministry of Education and the officials from the Indian Embassy, the school was able to provide admissions to the deserving students in various classes. The school has to resort to lottery system to give admission
Waris said that his committee in addition to the new building was also trying to provide best possible facilities to students so that they could focus more on their studies. He said during the past one year some key actions were taken by the school committee.
Cabinets were installed in all the sections of class 1 and 2 to reduce the burden of schoolbags on young children. If this succeeds then they plan to take this further by installing them in higher classes as well.
The school has short list of vendors for developing a mobile application for school. The parents will be able to get notifications, announcements with regard to the attendance, performance, progress of their wards along with many other features including interaction with the teachers at the click of a button on their smart phones.
An initiative is taken to enrich the school libraries further. Already 2,500 titles have been added in the school libraries and they plan to add further 10,000 titles over a period of time.
A complete fleet of the brand new buses are now operational with many advance features like CCTV cameras, P/A system, sensor to detect if children are left back in the bus, GPS system. From this year onwards these buses will also be used to transport the LKG students along with a dedicated conductor for additional safety and monitoring of small children.
A training program has been initiated for untrained teachers under which the English communication skills and computer skills of some selected teachers are being enhanced.
They have plans for conducting training for the teachers in other core and supplementary areas as well.
The teacher's online evaluation system by the students was successfully implemented for the current academic year. Various options are being evaluated for establishing an E-Library for the school students.

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