Yasodara Pathanjali, an entrepreneur born in the United Kingdom, returned to Sri Lanka after residing there for three decades. She left the United Kingdom and ventured to Sri Lanka to establish her dream school, where children could pursue their desired subjects and omit those they disliked.
This school undoubtedly presents an alternative to the traditional schooling system, where students face limited choices.
Learning Without Going to School’
Yasodara herself was homeschooled. She firmly believes that education imparted at home holds greater value than formal schooling.
She arrived in Sri Lanka in 2018 and dedicated herself to educating parents about providing education to their children without resorting to traditional schooling.
“A child can receive a good education through schooling. However, if parents desire and have the ability to do more, they can provide their child with something beyond what even the best school can offer. I didn’t attend any school until high school, but I studied at home with my mother’s guidance. That method is successful, and that’s why my children also follow it,” Yasodara explained to the BBC.
She refrains from sending her children to school and instead educates them at home.
“Because I am a teacher and a mother with ample time, I teach my children at home. However, many parents cannot do so. Therefore, it’s challenging for everyone to educate their children without sending them to school. Nevertheless, many mothers prefer alternative education over the traditional schooling system. Teach children using a method. Alternative education systems are prevalent in developed countries around the world,” stated Yasodara.
Alternative education systems combine informal and formal education.
Yasodhara Pathanjali emphasized that her school’s students have the opportunity to take recognized exams, with no age restrictions.
“For those aspiring to take exams like Cambridge, students and parents can determine the age at which they wish to write those exams. If someone wants to take the relevant exams before or after the prescribed age, they have that option as well.”
“I consider the alternative education system to be a project-based education system regardless of age, gender, or language. In my school, education is project-based. This system involves teaching in scientific detail about all related fields while carrying out a project. Children learn very willingly through that method. Moreover, they gain practical knowledge rather than rote memorization from books,” explained Yasodara Pathanjali.
The Independent Collective School, founded by Yasodara Pathanjali, will open its doors in January 2024.