implementation of non tamil indian language policy

In 1993 the Ministry of Education announced a change in its policy of Mother Tongue for Primary Schools and allowed the study of Minority Indian Languages in lieu of Chinese, Malay or Tamil. That is Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu could now be studied at as a 2nd Language.

Parents were responsible for the education of the child and the child would be tested only at P.S.L.E. Examination. As for examination from Primary 1 to Primary 6 the child would be assessed on his/her other subjects (i.e. minus Mother Tongue).

Gujarati Parents were very happy to learn of this and therefore to cater for the increase in attendance and expectation of parents, the Gujarati School had a meeting on 10th October 1993 and decided to setup a Committee to advise the Singapore Gujarati School as to what was required of the School.

The committee was called the “Gujarati Language Review Committee” and comprised of members of the School committee, well-wishers and interested parents. The Committee presented a report to the Gujarati School in 5th November 1993. Its recommendations were accepted by the School and the following are some of the major changes that were made to the running of the Gujarati School.

  1. Starting of Saturday Classes at Haig Girls’ School. There would be Nine Classes catering for students from KG2 to Sec. 4.
  2. The Goodman Road facility would continue to be used for Gujarati Education from Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm. At this premises one permanent teacher would teach pupils who require additional help or are not able to attend the Saturday Classes.
  3. Attendance at Haig Girls’ School was compulsory to sit for all Examinations
  4. A fee of $15.00 per month would be charged
  5. Proper Syllabus / Textbooks / Worksheets were prepared for each level.

8th January 1994, was the first day of School at Haig Girls’ School and every effort was made to make the exercise as easy as possible. The attendance of the School in 1994 was 112 of whom 57 were taking Gujarati as a 2nd Language.

The Gujarati School was able to make a success of its plans because it had an established educational structure which the elders had already prepared and the additional effort and support of interested parents.

Major restructuring of the School

In 1994 the Singapore Gujarati School’s property at No. 2 Goodman Road was held for the school by Trustees. The trustees were:-

  1. Mr. R. Jumabhoy
  2. Mr. Kantilal Jamnadas
  3. Mr. Manharlal Govindji Shah
  4. Mr. Mulchandbhai A. Parikh

The Members of the School Committee in 1994 were:-

  1. Mr. Manharlal Govindji Shah
  2. Mr. Mulchandbhai A. Parikh
  3. Mr. Dipak K. Shah
  4. Mr. Kirtikar K. Mehta
  5. Mr. Sudhir J. Desai
  6. Mr. Suresh D. Patel
  7. Mr. Pushkar B. Desai
  8. Mrs. Mita Shah
  9. Mr. Vinayak Dhansukhlal

From 1994 to 1998 the School Committee worked to reconstitute the School in such a manner that future members would find it easy to run. It was therefore agreed to reconstitute the Singapore Gujarati School as a Company Limited by Guarantee and Not Having Share Capital. The company was registered on 16th October 1998 and its Company No. 199805072E. Further it applied for and was registered as a Charity under the Charities Act, 1994, Registration No. 1369.

It also obtained permission from Ministry of Finance and was able to transfer the property from the name of the trustees to the name of Singapore Gujarati School Limited.

The initial Directors of the company were:-

  1. Mr. Manharlal Govindji Shah
  2. Mr. Mulchandbhai A. Parikh
  3. Mr. Vinayak s/o Dhansukhlal

At present the Directors of the company are:-

  1. Mr. Anand Raj. Patel
  2. Mr. Dipak K. Shah
  3. Ms. Mita Shah
  4. Mr. Vinayak Dhansukhlal

Members:-

  1. Mrs. Asha M. Vora
  2. Mr. Dhimant H. Patel
  3. Mr. Pushkarrai B. Desai
  4. Mr. Sudhir J. Desai
  5. Mr. Suresh D. Patel