In the Khargone district of Madhya Pradesh, IIT Bombay professor, Dr Chetan Singh Solanki has founded Education Park – a not-for-profit school aimed at providing quality education to kids of the rural area. “Quality education means a person should be self-sufficient after graduation,” says Solanki. The professor shares that the teaching and infrastructure of the institution are at par with the city schools to ensure that the kids gain a strong footing like their urban counterparts.
The fully solar powered school is making affordable education possible for over 1000 children presently enrolled from the nearby 40 villages. Solanki believes it is only fair that the teachers are adequately compensated. He is relying on crowdfunding to have a Teacher’s Fellowship and also offer accommodation to the teaching staff of the school. Education Park also needs funds to build more classrooms and acquire more schools buses.
A native of Khargone district, Solanki himself studied in a school with one classroom. “Rural schools are not well equipped. Schemes like Mid-day Meal are good only for enrolment,” He has observed that many middle-income families from these areas want to educate their sons and daughters when good infrastructure is provided. “In such a big country, one Education Park is not sufficient. Once this model is complete, we want to replicate it in other places as well,” concludes the professor who has been teaching at IIT-B since 2004.