India Schools : The Doon School, Dehradun
The Doon School, one of India’s first public schools, owes its existence to the vision, foresight and dream of Hon’ble Mr. Satish Ranjan Das, one of pre-independent India’s most eminent barristers and a member of the Executive Council of the Viceroy of India.
With support from a wide range of eminent Indians of that time the Indian Public Schools Society was registered as a non-profit making body under the Indian Companies Act in 1929. Unfortunately, Mr. S.R. Das passed away in 1928. Thereafter his wife and friends collected funds to start the school in September 1935. The society was fortunate to be able to take over the Chand Bagh Estate in Dehra Dun from the Indian Forest College and to acquire the neighbouring Skinners’ Estate from the family of the well known Col. Skinner of Skinner’s Horse.
The Doon School is distinguished by being the only one which was set up as a custom made public school. On October 27, 1935, it was inaugurated by the Viceroy of India- Lord Wellingdon. Lord Halifax, was the president. The British Board of Education selected A.E. Foot, a master at Eton College as The Doon School’s first Headmaster.
Campus - The campus covers 28 hectares of woods and greenery located at the beginning of the cantonment.
The campus covers 28 hectares of woods and greenery located at the beginning of the Cantonment.
The teaching staff consists of mainly men teachers but some women are employed for certain specified subjects.
The overall teachers student ratio is 10:1. The average strength of a class ranges from 20 to 22 boys. Each student is assigned to a tutor who is attached to his Boarding House and to whom he may turn at any time for counselling and guidance.
The school is affiliated with the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations which is one of the two recognized and approved All India Systems of Secondary Education with English as the medium of instruction.
The ICSE syllabus includes Hindi, English, Maths, History, Sanskrit, Sciences. These constitute the compulsory subjects. The optional ones are, Economics, Art, Music, French and German.
The fees structure can be obtained from the office on request.
Admissions are in April, on the basis of an entrance test conducted in November which includes English, Hindi, Maths and General Knowledge. Boys are admitted in Class VII and VIII. The recommended age for Class VII is eleven and for Class VIII is twelve plus.
There are a number of scholarships offered and an exchange system also prevails.
Monthly tests are conducted and used as the basis for internal assessments. The report cards are marked out of five and Industry, Achievement and Efficiency are all graded. The academic year consists of two terms- A Spring Term from February 1 to May 30 and an Autumn Term from August 1 to November 30.
Emphasis on regular exercise and physical fitness is built into the programme and all games are supervised by masters. P.T. or yoga under qualified instructors, is compulsory in the early morning. Cricket, hockey and football are played in their respective seasons and are compulsory in the early morning. In addition, the school offers a choice of tennis, squash, basketball, volleyball, swimming, boxing, athletics, archery, gymnastics, badminton and taekwondo.
Extra Curricular Activities
Extra curricular activities include Royal Life Saving Society Tests, Duke of Edinburgh Award Programme and First Aid Courses of the St. John’s Ambulance Brigade. Boys are encouraged to develop hobbies and two hours a week are allotted to this pursuit. A choice is offered among carpentry, wood turning, metal craft, motor mechanics, photography, aero modelling, chess, first aid, electronics, practical chemistry, meteorology, dramatics, typing, philately and computers.
The Art School encourages a choice among painting, wood sculpture, stone sculpture, pottery, ceramic glazing, batik, screen printing and hand block printing.
The Music School offers instructions in vocal classical music, the tabla, the sitar, the sarod, the flute, the piano and the guitar.
Creative minded boys contribute to the ‘Doon School Weekly’, ‘Echo’, ‘Arpan’, and the ‘Circle’. French and German are added optional subjects taught 3 times a week.