STUVOL – Student volunteers

AM High School, Ananda Nagar, India

Acarya Vivekananda Avt. has been the principal of the Ananda Marga High School at Ananda Nagar since its early days when it started in 1964. It has now 850 students from class 5 to 10. Higher Secondary classes 11 and 12, are shifted to the Degree College. There are three hostels housing 350 students from Kolkata, Tripura and Jarkhand, who attend the High School. Dadaji is also advisory to three High Schools in Tripura.

Dadaji has been part of the struggles the school went through, including the historical events of Dadhichis in 1967 and the complete destruction of the college in 1978. In our interview with Dadaji he said that there are so many dogmas in the surrounding society yet, year by year, many students and guardians leave disturbing sentiments behind as they embrace a Neohumanist Education. Nowadays, Muslim and Hindu students study peacefully side by side. ‘Many guardians used to be my students’, Dadaji said, ‘they feel we are doing good for them’.

Dadaji compiled three guidebooks for STUVOL which is a daily 40 minute period. The basic idea of STUVOL is how to create love for all – a ‘human-making mission’. The daily curriculum includes Prabhat Saḿgiita songs, Sanskrit, inspiring quotations recital (Ananda Vaniis), meditation, moral teachings, general knowledge, physical education including Tandava and Kaoshikii, yoga asanas, philosophy and conduct rules. Once a month the students engage in public service such as cleaning road areas and planting trees.