An introduction about the philosophy, vision and mission of the City Montessori School (CMS), Lucknow will explain as to why a school (that is CMS) organizes the International Conference of Chief Justices of the World on Article 51 of the Constitution of India. The said Article 51, reproduced in this write up, relates to ‘International Peace and Security.’ It is now widely known that the CMS is the world’s only school to receive the ‘2002 UNESCO Prize for Peace Education’ and the school is listed by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest school by the number of pupils in a single city
and the current enrolment of students is over 47,000. CMS is the recipient of the ‘2004 Nuclear-free Future Special Achievement Award’ and the “World’s Children’s Prize for the Rights of the Child’. As the largest school, the CMS feels concerned about the welfare of world’s children and children yet-to-be-born and about their security and their various rights. The CMS is a distinctive school and this is amply clear from the text of the Press Release No. 2002-37 dated June 6, 2002 issued by the UNESCO from PARIS while announcing the award of 2002 —Unesco Prize for Peace Education to the City Montessori School, Lucknow, India. A copy of the press release is reproduced herein.
THE WORLD TREATS CHILDREN
An excruciating paradox of modern times is the unprecedented prosperity we are witnessing amidst scenes of inhuman poverty and disease. A look at the hair-raising data given at the end of this note is sufficient to show the inhuman treatment being given to the world’s children — 30,000 of whom die everyday from malnutrition and vaccine-preventable diseases.
Now a new, more deadly threat to the safety and security of children all over the world has emerged in the form of international terrorism — particularly in view of the reported attempts of terrorist groups to obtain some of the over 20,000 strong nuclear stockpile of warheads and the threat of a third world war intensified by the fear psychosis. Countries are spending precious resources on arms and armaments even as their citizens suffer from lack of
CITY MONTESSORI SCHOOL (INDIA)
AWARDED THE 2002 UNESCO PRIZE FOR
June 6 - UNESCO Director-General
Koïchiro Matsuura awarded the
UNESCO Prize for Peace Education
to the City Montessori School (India)
on June 5 following its recommendation
by the prize's international jury.
Meeting on June 3 and 4 at Organization
Headquarters, the jury commended
the school "in recognition
of its efforts to promote the universal
values of education for peace and
tolerance and to renew the principles
of secularism at a time when these
values and principles are increasingly
The City Montessori School (CMS),
founded in 1959 in Lucknow in the
state of Uttar Pradesh, is not a
school like any other. It is distinctive
not only for its size -- with 25,000
pupils from kindergarten up to high
school level, it figures in the
Guinness Book of Records as the
biggest private school in the world
-- or the quality of its teaching.
Its students systematically score
higher on exams than the national
average. More than anything it stands
out because of it its philosophy:
For more than 40 years it has educated
students to respect the values of
tolerance and peace and sought to
make them citizens of the world.
The school's founders, Jagdish and
Bharti Gandhi, inspired by the non-violence
of Mahatma Gandhi, founded their
school on four fundamental principles:
universal values, excellence, global
understanding, and service to the
community. Students, for example,
give literacy classes in neighbouring
villages, as well as teaching health
The school aims to give pupils the
skills permitting them to face the
complex problems of the world today,
by displaying trust for each child,
by developing their sense of responsibility,
by the theoretical and practical
teaching of moral values, and by
opening their eyes to other religions
The recognition given to the importance
of the family is one of the characteristics
of the CMS. The school sensitizes
parents by giving them books on
their educational influence and
involving them closely in the life
of the school. And the teachers
benefit from continued training
in the main principles of the school,
as well as in child development,
psychology and sociology. Each child
has a mentor who engages in a personal
relationship with his or her charge's
Another characteristic of the City
Montessori School is the emphasis
it places on educational research.
Its Innovation Wing employs 25 people
who identify and bring in the best
educational theories and practices
from whatever country, sourcing
techniques from the Montessori method,
robotics, tutorial systems or management
The US$30,000,UNESCO Prize for Peace
Education has been awarded since
1981 to promote initiatives that
seek to improve public awareness
and to mobilize opinion in favour
of peace. Funding for the Prize
is provided though a donation from
the Nippon Foundation. In 2001,
the Prize was given to the Jewish-Arab
Center for Peace in Givat Haviva
in Israel and to Ugandan Bishop
Nelson Onono-Onweng. Previous prize-winners
include: the Mothers of the Plaza
de Mayo (Argentina), Prayudh Payutto
(Thailand), Mother Teresa (India),
Rigoberta Menchú Tum (Guatemala),
and Paulo Freire (Brazil).
time and venue of the prize-giving
ceremony will be decided later.
"World Peace is a lofty and highly desirable goal. The continued existence of humankind and many other life forms depends on it being realized. What will bring the world’s nations to the arbitration table and inspire them to settle disagreements without bloodshed? So far, the success rate has been dismal. In my opinion, nations must seek commonalities--common denominators -- that no one can argue with. I believe the most powerful common denominator for all nations is its children. That will bring them to the peace table in the right frame of mind to hammer out the necessary agreement to assure a peaceful world."
— Donald Dewar, President QCI, USA in a letter to CMS
with reference to
3rd International Conference of Chief Justices of the World
SCHOOL IS THE
LIGHTHOUSE OF SOCIETY
CMS believes that ‘School is a building with four walls with tomorrow inside’ and the ‘destiny of a man is shaped in the classroom’. CMS, therefore, upholds that 'a school must act as the (Lighthouse of Society) to provide a meaningful education, spiritual direction and leadership to students, parents and society — and that a modern school must be concerned with the affairs of the age. Hence, this is a CMS initiative on behalf of the world’s children.
EDUCATION — A POWERFUL
INSTRUMENT OF SOCIAL TRANSFORMATION
CMS believes that at certain moments in history education must also act as a powerful instrument of profound social transformation and that such a moment has now arrived. CMS believes that education is a continuous and creative process. Its aim is to develop the capacities latent in human nature and to coordinate their expression for the enrichment and progress of society by equipping children with spiritual, moral and material knowledge.
PURPOSE OF TODAY’S
EDUCATION — REDEMPTION OF MANKIND FROM ITS GODLESSNESS
CMS believes that the main reason for the weakening of the social fabric and the spreading of global unrest is the meaninglessness of education which has filled the mind of man with godlessness, ignorance, confusion and conflict. Therefore, we believe that the purpose of today’s education should be the redemption of mankind from (i) its godlessness, (ii) its ignorance, (iii) its confusion, and (iv) its conflict. CMS also believes that human beings have three realities, that is, (i) material (ii) human and (iii) divine. Only a balanced development of all the three realities of life can make an individual a total quality person and a useful member of society.
LET US MAKE EVERY CHILD
GOOD AND SMART
CMS believes that every child is potentially the light of the world but at the same time the cause of its darkness. Therefore the question of meaningful education must be accounted as of primary importance. CMS believes that now the time has arrived when we must try to make every child both good and smart, a gift of God to mankind, the pride of the human race and a light of the world.
TRUE EDUCATION RELEASES
CMS also upholds that true education releases capacities, develops analytical abilities, confidence in oneself, will-power and goal setting competencies and instills the vision that enables one to become a self-motivated agent of social change, serving the best interests of the community.
EDUCATION — THE GREATEST
SERVICE TO GOD
CMS believes that among the greatest of all the great services that can possibly be rendered by man to Almighty God is the education of children, building their character, and inculcating in their tender hearts the love of God. CMS teaches its students — ‘do not busy yourself only in your concerns, but let you thoughts be fixed upon that which will rehabilitate the fortunes of mankind and sanctify the hearts and souls of men.’
CMS IS TRYING TO ACHIEVE
THE GOAL OF ‘VASUDHAIV KUTUMBAKAM’ (The earth is but one country and mankind its citizens)
CMS was established 54 years ago, in 1959, with the vision of making children spiritually aware and of implanting in their tender hearts the ideas of world unity and world peace based on the ancient Indian philosophy of 'Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam', that is, the Earth is but one country and mankind its citizens. Therefore, for the School's motto, the founders, Mr and Mrs Gandhi, selected the words ‘Jai Jagat’ (Do good to the whole world) which was coined by Mahatma Gandhi and propounded by his disciple Saint Vinoba Bhave. Consequently, CMS strives to teach every student the lofty ideals of the oneness of God, unity of humankind, universal brotherhood, world unity and world peace, in addition to the teaching of the prescribed school syllabus.
CMS — FIRST, DARING, DIFFERENT
CMS is FIRST school in the world for the following reasons:
CMS is the FIRST and only School in the world to be honoured with the UNESCO Prize for Peace Education 2002 for its efforts “to promote the universal values of peace and tolerance at a time when these values are increasingly being challenged.” It may be pointed out here that Mother Teresa was given this prestigious award in 1992. The founders Mr and Mrs Gandhi were specially invited by the UNESCO to receive the prize on behalf of CMS at a special ceremony held at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris on 23rd September 2002.
CMS is the FIRST and only School in the world that regularly organizes over 32 international educational events annually such as Commonwealth Youth Conference, Int. Children Film Festival, International Education Fair, ICPPPP, INTERFAITH, ROLEOFMEDIA, MACFAIR, Ed Leadership, Odyssey International, ETDP, Geofest International, Cofas International, International Innovations Day, World Peace Festival, EXSPO, Quanta International, International Astronomy Olympiad, International Youth Fest, Celesta International, EUREKA, IYMC, SAARC Youth Festival, Intl. Conference of Chief Justices, INNERSCAPE, ICSQCC, QUEST, REFLECTIONS, GlobalTie Conference, WIZMIC, IYCGEC and others such as CISV camps and ISSE exchange programme for one-to-one interactions between students, to compete and collaborate with children from all over the world, with the objective of promoting global understanding, world unity and world peace.
CMS is the FIRST School in the world that pioneered the Quality Control movement in education to inculcate quality awareness in students and to make them Total Quality People (TQP), an initiative that has motivated schools in several countries of the world to the same goals.
CMS is the FIRST School whose Founder–Manager, Mr. Jagdish Gandhi, is the only recipient from India to be honoured by the Mayor Mr. Everette Varney with the Key to the city of Georgetown,USA on behalf of its citizens for being a ´true visionary´ in pioneering the concept of Students Quality Circles.
CMS is the FIRST School whose Founder–Manager, Mr. Jagdish Gandhi received the first ever Derozio Award in its launch year 2000 by the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations, for contributing to ''education and human enrichment.”
CMS is a DARING SCHOOL for the following reasons:
CMS is a DARING School in standing up for the rights to a safe future for the world´s two billion children and generations yet unborn.
CMS is a DARING School in standing up on behalf of the world´s two billion children born and children yet-to-be-born and demanding a duly-constituted World Parliament for enacting enforceable international law that alone can ensure a safe and peaceful future for children of the world.
CMS is a DARING School which is promoting the spirit of Article 51 of the Constitution of India by convening International Conferences of Chief Justices of the World with the aim of fostering respect for international law which alone can safeguard the future of world’s two billion children and those yet-to-be-born.
CMS is a DARING School which is working for education’s role as a powerful instrument for profound social transformation and in believing that such a moment has now arrived when we must address issues like communal and religious harmony and unity of the world.
CMS is a DIFFERENT SCHOOL in the world for the following reasons:
CMS is a DIFFERENT School which believes that true education must develope all the three realities of a man i.e material, human and divine.
CMS is a DIFFERENT School which inculcates values of world citizenship in its students and believes that humanity is passing through the stages of infancy and youth and is now about to enter the age of maturity as symbolized by the physical and emotional integration of all human beings in one global village.
CMS is a DIFFERENT School which strives to inculcate values of universal brotherhood in children and in building the defenses of peace in the minds and hearts of children by teaching them values of tolerance and coexistence.
CMS is a DIFFERENT School which believes that education must be comprehensive and must mould the mindset of children to universal values, global understanding, excellence in all things and service to humanity.
CMS is a DIFFERENT School which believes that a school must act like a lighthouse of society and provide meaningful guidance to parents and society. A school should take a leadership role and concern itself with the affairs and needs of the age. In this role the school must educate not only its students but also the parents and the society at large and must promote world unity and world peace.
CMS is a DIFFERENT School which believes that every child is potentially the light of the world, and at the same time the cause its darkness. Wherefore must the question of meaningful education concerned with the affairs of the age, be accounted as of primary importance.