Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Mysore Project: "GRAAM - Working to Make a Vibrant Village"

By: Simon, ILR '14, describes his 4-week service learning project at GRAAM, SVYM.

Simon speaking with a GRAAM staff member.
Simon taking local transportation in Mysore.
GRAAM office at SVYM.
"Graam" in Kannada (the language spoken in Mysore) means village. The work I do revolves around the village - building a strong, vibrant community for every child in every community. Currently, I am working as a researcher and policy writer for GRAAM's Education Leadership Management (ELM) program to help make this a reality. Improving the quality of education for every child requires many stakeholders: parents, teachers, headteachers (principals), community members, and other education officials. The ELM program hopes to train headteachers to make systematic changes to the school, utilize resources better, and engage the community. The training's will encompass over 200 schools. To measure the success of the training program, I was commissioned to create mechanisms of capturing data and information to better understand the program. After creating these research mechanisms, I have helped to develop the specific tools that will be used in the field. Now my work has shifted to writing policy. I am writing education policy on improving leadership in the Indian government school system. Next week I will have the opportunity to go out in the field and visit area schools. 

My success in this project has much credit owed to my education at ILR. My research experience at the Scheinman Institute and courses in organizational behavior and collective bargaining have been paramount to bringing my skill set to the ELM project. 

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