Medium of Instruction
For two Decades after its inception St. Xavier’s was primarily an English medium School. The medium of instructions as well as communication was primarily English. The School catered to the educational needs of the elite and thus it maintained its high standard through imparting education in English. During this time English – both written and spoken - was more emphasized so that our students would be able to compete with other the schools of great reputation.
But by late 70’s and early 80’s there was a growing awareness among the Jesuits to help the poor by empowering them through education. Hence most of the Jesuit schools began admitting students from the lower strata of the society. In order to facilitate the education of poor students the medium of instruction too had to be followed in Mother tongue. Thus from 1980 onwards the medium of instruction was changed to Hindi up to class 5. The Jesuit educators also realized that education is imparted best in one’s own mother tongue. Difficult concepts are better assimilated when it is imparted through one’s mother tongue. They argued that the most leading countries of the world (Japan, France, Germany etc) the students are taught in their own language than in a foreign tongue.
But in the context of globalization in 1990’s and the IT boom that started in India, the Jesuit educators gave a re-thinking on the policy of medium of instruction. The utility of English became all the more prominent when India became a destination for global investment. Once again English language became predominantly the global link language for education and business. Hence there arose the need to focus more on learning English. Hence in 2009 the medium of instruction was reverted to English and the new policy was implemented from the year 2010. Now St. Xavier’s is a fully English medium School.
When established in 1960 St. Xavier’s School was a boys’ only school. The founding Fathers followed the age-old Jesuit educational policy of providing educational assistance to boys as they thought that men are supposed to take the lead in the society and the women are considered to play only a secondary role in the family and the society.
But with the ushering of the modern era nuclear families became very popular and women began to play a major role in every society world over. They not only have to look after their children but even go out to work in offices. Hence it has become very imperative they too are given proper educational opportunities to grow up. A country like India has tremendous potentialities in its women population which has been totally neglected for centuries. The Delhi Jesuits read the writings on the wall and in 1984 they decided to convert Xavier’s into a co-ed school from the academic year 1985-86. The first batch of co-ed students passed out from Xavier’s in 1998. Over a period of time the Delhi Jesuits found co-ed as the best way of education and one by one all Jesuit schools of Delhi and Patna Provinces were converted in co-ed.
The pioneers were not merely satisfied with imparting the 3-R’s, (Reading, Writing, Arithmetic), but focused more on character formation and personality development. They encouraged healthy competition among students in various activities and for this purpose the students were divided into four different Houses. The House system was started in 1960 itself and the House names were given in colours. From 1961 it was changed into the names of animals and the Houses were known as ‘Lions’, ‘Leopards’, ‘Panthers’ and Tigers’. In 1971 the Houses were re-named as ‘Bhabha’, ‘Gandhi’, ‘Nehru’ and ‘Tagore’ which has been continued till date.
School’s Social Commitment
Since its foundation, the school does its bit in empowering the powerless and giving voice to the voiceless through the education of the economically weaker sections. Every year we organise many programs to familiarize our students with the social realities of the world at large and our country in particular. Regular exposure programs are held with this end in view. Students are taken to nearby slums, orphanages and Homes for the Aged.
The Xaverian family has established numerous scholarships to help the education of the economically weaker students. Many alumni support the education of the children from less privileged sections of the society who are admitted to St. Xavier’s School. Each year many lakhs of rupees are spent in this direction. Presently the School provides educational assistance to nearly 700 students from the lower strata of society, giving them full free education or by giving partial fee waive. All fines collected from students go into the scholarship fund. Xavier Fair is one of the main sources for raising fund for education of the underprivileged.