Free School Education Program
Ved Vignan Maha Vidhya Peeth (VVMVP) was the first rural school started by Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar in 1981. It began when Gurudev observed some local children playing in the dust near The Art of Living Center. When he saw that they had no access to education, he decided to do something to help them.
A local volunteer was appointed to look after the children to give them basic lessons in hygiene, teach them educational games and to serve them free healthy food for lunch. This became a big attraction for the children and their parents and continues to date. As the school has progressed, a formal educational structure has been established, and the number of students and teachers has increased.
Today this school is one of the 473 schools that are revolutionizing education in rural and tribal India. Know more about these free schools
First generation students
Almost 95 percent of the students are the first generation, and the school is proud to have a 100 percent success rate in local exams.
“At this young age, my daughter would have been working on the farms. We never dreamt of her getting an education! I am so happy to see her going to school!” - Mrs. Savitri, a parent
The students are provided with uniforms, shoes, books, writing materials, bus service and mid-day meals to neutralize any factors that can prevent them from attending school. Yoga, meditation, sports and creative activities like dance, music, drawing and painting form an essential part of the school curriculum to ensure a healthy body and mind.
The Art of Living program for children, ART Excel, is regularly organized for students to help them to handle any negative influences at home. Outdoor medical facilities and a mobile dispensary are also made available.
The school has its own cabinet to make students more aware of the political system and inculcate leadership skills in them. The school children themselves elect the school cabinet. Through this system, children practically learn the importance of the Indian democratic system of governance. The school cabinet takes responsibility for the junior classes and helps with the running of the school.
Senior students are also taught vocational skills like tailoring, computer training, and carpentry and are encouraged to pursue secondary education.
Alumni meetings have recently started. Alumni share their experiences with other students and encouraging them to pursue secondary education and their goals.
The alumni group holds regular meetings with parents and children to raise awareness about the importance of education.