India Schools : St. Paulís School, Darjeeling
St. Paulís traces its origin to a Calcutta school from 1823. In 1864 the school was transferred to Darjeeling. The means of reaching Darjeeling in those days were very rugged. The site chosen was the hill called Jalapahar. At an altitude of nearly 7,500 feet above sea level. St. Paulís became a public school at the highest altitude in the world. St. Paulís has had many men of outstanding influence on its Board of Governors and amongst its Rectors & Masters. Bishop Foss Westcott needs a special place of mention, who presided over the affairs of the school from 1919 to 1945. Bishop Foss Westcott was an ideal influence in guiding the school during the days of transition. He died in 1949. Mr. L. J. Goddard served from 1934 to 1964, and came to be regarded as the founder of St. Paulís in its present tradition.
The school buildings contain the school hall, dining hall, library, science laboratory, dormitories (each with its own bathrooms and lavatories), class rooms, infirmary, dispensary, common rooms, barber shop. The school buildings house comfortably over 250 boys in the Senior Wing and 230 boys in the Primary Wing.
St. Paulís staff of the Senior Wing are post- graduates from Indian and overseas universities. In the Junior Wing and the Primary Wing the staff is mainly composed of men and women who are trained teachers and are under the direction of experienced heads. Most of the members of the staff live on the school estate. Some quarters adjoin the dormitories, others are on the boundaries of the estate in separate houses. In addition to the teaching staff there are Matrons-in-charge of the personal welfare and care of the boys in the Senior, Junior, and Primary Wings.
St. Paulís is essentially an Indian residential school. The staff and the scholars are predominantly Indian, and its educational policy is oriented towards life in India and Indiaís place in world affairs. Boys from different parts of India, of different castes and from different religious communities, are living, working, eating, and playing together with boys from other nations with different social and religious customs.
The school is affiliated to the Indian School Certificate Examination, New Delhi. The medium of instruction is English.
Board & Tuition Fee: Rs. 24,000/- p.a for all classes from 1 to X and Rs. 26,000/- p.a. for classes XI and XII. The fees are payable annually in advance except for salaried and fixed income groups. A rebate of Rs. 500/- is given if the annual fees are paid within 30 days of dispatch of the advance bill. The above fees include board, ordinary tuition, ordinary medical attendance, barberís services and subscriptions to the principal games. A reduction of Rs. 400/- per annum is allowed for every brother.
Parents desiring admission for their sons are required to complete the registration form and submit it along with the non- refundable registration fee. Entrance tests are held in August/ September. Before entry, parents will be sent information regarding tests to be taken by the children. Places subject to availability, will be offered on the basis of the written test and interviews. Refundable caution money will be taken which remains with the school throughout the boyís stay and will be refunded when he leaves, provided all bills have been paid in full. Caution money is not refunded if the boy for some reason fails to join the school or leaves within the first year.
A limited number of scholarships are awarded annually to the boys who show exceptional academic merit. A limited number of bursaries are awarded each year to deserving pupils whose parents are in genuine need of financial assistance for their boyís schooling.
Boys in Class X are prepared for the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) examination and, two years later, in Class XII, for the Indian School Certificate (ISC) which qualifies a candidate for admission to a degree course at an Indian university.
The major games are cricket, football and hockey. Tennis, badminton, table-tennis, squash, basketball, and volleyball are also played. There are short seasons for boxing, athletics and cross country running. The whole school has fifteen minutes physical training every morning.
Extra Curricular Activities
The boys undergo training in camp craft, first aid, cooking, map and compass practice. There are various hobby clubs and socially useful productive work programmes which develop manual, artistic and technical skills. Each of the four Houses in the Senior Wing presents a concert from time to time, and the schoolís Dramatic Society stages a play annually in October. Indian and western music and band, elocution and drama, play a large part in the lives of the boys. The school encourages hobbies and societies and every facility is afforded to ensure that a boy has a variety of interests from which he may choose. In the Senior Wing, the hobbies that are encouraged are art & crafts, model making, photography, wood and lathe work, cybernetics etc.