The Best Principal I have ever Known : Late Shri J. N. Dar
Getting Wiser—and Softer
- Mr. Yash Pal Verma Feb 09, 2020
In the year 1975, I joined Navayug Public School, Sarojni Nagar, New Delhi as a ‘Mathematics Teacher’ and got an opportunity to work under the able guidance of, Shri J.N. Dhar, the then and Founder Principal of the School. Worked with him for years together.
Mr. Dar used to say that one gets wiser and softer after suffering and facing failures in life.
As an individual, I used to criticize Mr. Dar the maximum (on his face but not on his back) since from the very beginning I felt that he is disorganized, highly impulsive, and rarely follows a set schedule. He was disorganized because he will never say no to doing good and there is too much good to be done. He was impulsive because he believed that young children can learn more and more through the environment/ interactions and practical experiences rather than learning from Text Books. Since Navayug School was established by New Delhi Municipal Committee (NDMC), especially for the gifted children from economically weaker sections of Society, delegates of different countries used to visit our School off and on. The day Mr. Dar used to get the details of the delegation, he used to put students and teachers on duty to collect the Economical, Physical, Geographical, and Political background of the country from which the Delegates were to come. This information was to be displayed on boards of different colors which were available in the School corridors. In the morning assembly, all students of the school were directed to go through the contents of the boards again and interact with Teachers and friends to know more about the said country’
On the day of the visit of the delegates, the guests were invited to take breakfast, Lunch and the Evening Tiffin with the students. At such events Teachers and students used to interact with delegates to exchange facts of our country and the facts of the country of the delegates. At the end of the day, Delegates used to accept that our students know much more about their country, as compared to their knowledge.
Being a Mathematics teacher, I used to feel that I am not getting sufficient time to complete the syllabus properly. My sensitivity towards students’ performance in their exams, used to force me to go the Principal sir, and express my concern. Surprisingly, I used to observe that Mr. Dhar never lost his temper and used to convince that the knowledge acquired by the students through these interactions will make them more successful in their practical life.
By the time students were to prepare themselves for the Board Examination, Mr. Dar immediately changed his approach of imparting the subject knowledge to the students. He identified the students who were facing problems in ding studies at their homes (due to accommodation problem or some other reasons) he made arrangements in the school for their stay even at night. Mr. Dar and Mata ji (Mr. Dhar’s wife) used to take care of such students to concentrate on their studies.
This resulted in producing remarkable results of the students in the Board Examinations as well as in various competitions for admission to professional courses like NDA, IIT, MBBS etc. Today, we are feeling proud of our students who have exceed in different fields of life.
In the year 1982, I left Nav Yuga School to join the DAV college Managing committee as Principal. As principal, I followed the working style of Mr. Dar to be a successful Learner and an exemplary Administer,
After retiring in the year 2005 as Dy. Director with DAV, I am associated with a number of Schools and Organizations like TATA Consultancy Services, Alert Knowledge Services World Wide, etc. and working as Resource Person for Principals' Work Shops and Seminars, etc. While interacting with Principals of repute, I feel proud in sharing my experiences with them.
To end with my write-up, I can freely say that Late Shri J.N Dar was
‘The Best Principal I have ever known
Yash Pal Verma,
(NCERT’s National Awardee for Innovations in Schools)
Former Dy. Director, D.A.V. College Managing Committee, New Delhi