On June 1st 2009, Village Community Schools opened Global Pathways School right in the heart of the village of Chettipalayam, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu.
The school’s current project administrator is Sunbeam Viswanath of Podanur, Coimbatore. Sunbeam has over 25 years of experience as an administrator of an orphanage in Coimbatore. Global Pathways is under the careful direction of two experienced Canadian educators, Barbara Goodwin-Zeibots and Barbara Galbraith. Both women, former Heads of The York School, an IB school in Toronto, bring a wealth of knowledge, expertise and heart to the project.
The school started with kindergarten and standard one classes, and has since progressed to include XXX. The eventual goal is to grow the school to standard twelve.
Global Pathways provides mid-morning and mid-afternoon snacks, as well as a nutritious, cooked meal for children during the middle of the day. The language of instruction is English and the curriculum covers core subjects including: Math, English, Tamil, Social Studies, Science as well as Music, Visual Arts, and Physical Education (including Dance, Yoga, and Karate.) The curriculum combines activity-based learning with an inquiry approach based on the Directors’ experience as International Baccalaureate practitioners.
The classrooms are well equipped with a variety of material ensuring that each child has the opportunity to progress at their own pace. This is particularly important for those children with special needs and who require additional, individual support. Assessment and evaluation is an ongoing and carefully documented process used to ensure progress in learning. It is hoped that this school in Chettipalayam will become a model of excellence in education.
At present there are XX full time teachers and XX co-curricula teachers. These teachers have received initial training from the Global Pathways School’s Directors, and continue to receive ongoing Professional Development in the classroom from them.
Global Pathways is closely aligned with Jacob’s House. Jacob’s House is an organization which has recently opened in Chettipalayam and provides a home for elderly people who have no family support. The two organizations have formed a very special relationship that now links the young community with the older community in mutually supportive ways.