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Dr. Farooq Ahmad Wasil a visionary educationist

By Conan Businge

Added 25th October 2017 02:33 PM

With over 30 years of involvement in the field of Education, Dr. Farooq Ahmad Wasil, with Phd specializing in Education, is currently the Global Head, Affordable Schools Division, GEMS Education.

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Dr. Farooq Ahmad Wasil

With over 30 years of involvement in the field of Education, Dr. Farooq Ahmad Wasil, with Phd specializing in Education, is currently the Global Head, Affordable Schools Division, GEMS Education.

EDUCATION

Dr. Farooq Ahmad Wasil, is in the field of education and had a dream right from his formative years to contribute constructively and meaningfully to society. Born in Barahmulla, Kashmir.


The strife-torn years that shredded normal life in which he grew up, reminded him time and again the critical role of education and growing up, these memories reiterated repeatedly the need for contributing back to society.

The field of education became a natural choice with the realization that education is the only instrument that can enable change and empowerment of children to a better tomorrow.

With over 30 years of involvement in the field of Education, Dr. Farooq Ahmad Wasil, with Phd specializing in Education, is currently the Global Head, Affordable Schools Division, GEMS Education.

Dr. Wasil, an icon for innovation and meaningful change in education and a well-known figure in the field of education believes in observing, studying and putting to use the latest developments that can contribute to cost effective quality education.

He has acquired a depth of knowledge in his professional career path of over 30 years, which he aptly applies both to his professional commitments as well as to projects that are initiatives to empower the underprivileged.

Dr. Wasil having been closely associated with the Central Board of Secondary Education in various capacities was Secretary of the CBSE Gulf Council from 2001 –2002 and then Chairman of the CBSE Gulf Council from 2002 – 2003. He was Chairman of the Sports Committee of the Gulf Council for CBSE schools for the year 2004-2005.

He has also been a part of the CBSE affiliation committees 2009 which saw his appointment as Member of the CBSE Committee for ‘Promotion of CBSE Overseas”.

Dr. Wasil has been honoured with the prestigious National Teacher Award awarded by the Ministry of Human Resources, receiving the award from the Ex-President of India Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in September 2005.

In recognition of leadership competency and contribution to Education, he was awarded the GEMS Fellowship - “Leadership for Learning: The Cambridge Network” Fellowship in January 2006 to research on Leadership Management at the University of Cambridge under Professor John MacBeath.

Featured on the cover of Education Journal Middle East (feb.2015), and also featured in the Gulf edition of Bloomsburg, the Education Leadership conference 2015 saw him speak on Building Future Learning Spaces and chairing the Digital Education Middle East (Sept, 2015) for the panel discussion on various aspects of technology in education.

A prolific writer and a passionate educator, his thoughts on the state of education in his home state of Jammu and Kashmir saw publication in leading e-newspapers such as Greater Kashmir and Kashmir Images under the banner of EDUcare.

He has also authored Pedagogy: From Perception to Perspective (published 2013) that took shape from his 3 decades of experience in education and also A Design Manual for School Building.  Dr. Wasil was also recently awarded the Life Time Contribution to Education award in Dubai.

Dr. Wasil passionately advocates the critical need for a paradigm shift in Indian education.  Dubai being home to a wide spectrum of nationalities is also home to diverse curricula in operation and having spent a long time span operating CBSE schools as well as understanding different curricula  at close quarters, argues for an education that is global in approach and perspective, more so keeping in mind the needs of the current and coming centuries.

For Dr.Wasil, the need of the hour is to ensure robust curricula delivered to global standards by facilitating teachers both at the school and college levels as it is this that will pave the way for betterment of economic, cultural and the social health of the nation.

Therefore, he ardently advocates the need for promoting academic excellence and providing opportunities to all students and especially those outstanding students with significant financial need so that each will blossom and so the nation will blossom.

Dr. Wasil believes that life is a long journey and India a culturally rich land wherein the best of every thought, practice and way of life is enshrined. This robust foundation according to him is what will enable India to effortlessly transform into a leading nation of the world by cultivating an informed generation that is able to think, act and feel responsibly by understanding their roots and reconciling and respecting one another’s roots and way of life as it is only healthy minds and healthy bodies that can create a strong developed India.

Education Philosophy

Dr. Wasil reckons education to be a great leveller and hence advocates focus on the 4Es.

Educating, Enjoying & Engaging, Empowering, Enriching

Educating

Dr. Wasil recognises the critical need to provide equal opportunities for education to all and particularly the financially weak and marginalised to ensure that our workforce is geared for the challenges of this century as well as the coming ones.  He mandates that our children must be empathetic to societal causes and concerns both at the local and global levels and groomed and nurtured into thinking individuals that possess professional edge combined with a strong value system grounded in our heritage.

Enjoying & Engaging

Dr. Wasil’s own experience as a practising educator compels him to mandate that the process of education must be an enjoyable and engaging process, both for the learner as well as the facilitator teacher. To this end, he mandates continuous professional enhancement through training and workshops as well as enabling the latest methods in pedagogy and methodology including the use of technology in all the aspects of education right from delivery of curriculum, testing as well as managing education.

Enriching

Dr. Wasil recommends cultivation of an informed and updated team that is able to think, act and feel responsibly through enriching experiences that are connected to life; in the process of education, especially in this internet and information overload age.

Empowering

Dr. Wasil feels that a nation’s wealth i.e. its children and youth when neglected leads to the decay of the nation. Empowering this segment through education especially via scholarships to the talented, needy and marginalized students, as also enabling healthy bodies and minds through fitness, sports and subsidized medical facilities for regular health checks will go a long way in creation of a developed India.

Professional History

Dr. Farooq Wasil joined GEMS Education in 1986 as Vice Principal of Our Own English High School, Dubai, the first school of GEMS Education. He was promoted as Principal of Our Own English High School, Ajman in 1994, which he singlehandedly shifted lock stock and barrel to Sharjah to its current premises opposite the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.

His keen interest in the area of School Improvement ensured that the modest student strength of 900 students swelled over the decade to over13, 000 students over with the school operating two shifts separately for boys and girls, spreading over four different buildings within the campus.

The growing reputation of the school fuelled the constant demand for admissions resulting in the opening of a separate boy’s branch, the Our Own English High School, Boys Branch, Sharjah in 2007 and a new mid-market school The GEMS Millennium School, Sharjah in 2010 under his direct supervision and execution. The school also won the Sharjah Excellence Award in 2008 and is equally a matter of pride that the school witnessed 100% results in the CBSE Board Examinations all through the two decades of his leadership.

In recognition of his contribution, he was promoted as the Director of Asian Schools of GEMS Education, Dubai prior to his role as Senior President-Special Projects, Everonn Education Limited for GEMS Education that culminated with his role as Chief Executive Officer and currently as the Global Head, Affordable Schools Division, GEMS Education which has 8 schools operational in a matter of 6 months in his stewardship under the banner of Dream Africa Schools in Africa.

Excellence in Education being his inspiration, Dr. Wasil has been a keen participant, keynote speaker, and Chairperson in innumerable conferences and seminars on Education both in the Gulf and in India. He has been actively involved in documenting research projects under the aegis of NCERT and the UGC.

A thinker and writer, his articles have featured in several National and International research journals and publications.

Believing in constructive sharing of progressive ideas, he started the in-house magazine Interact for the teaching faculty of the school which went on to be published as a pan Asian school magazine after he assumed the office as Director of Asian Schools of GEMS. His tenure also saw the standardization of curriculum, resources and online assessment for the Asian Schools of GEMS Education along with streamlining teacher recognition and promotion procedures.

His strong belief that a robust customised curriculum adds to brand value, in both the roles at GEMS; he initiated curriculum development activities both at the school level as well as at the group level.

As Director of Asian Schools, Dr. Wasil initiated and directed the development of research based in-house resources of 13 titles for the Kindergarten Department of the Asian Schools of GEMS as well as the development of the Primary Curriculum and grade based Continuous Assessment for the CBSE schools in alignment with international standards for GEMS.

In addition to this a set of workbooks for Arabic learning were developed in-house for Kindergarten Stage 2 and for Grade1 along with workbooks in Hindi and Malayalam for grade 1 and a cursive writing workbook for grade 2 all of which are in use in the Asian Schools of GEMS as on date.

He is also the author of Pedagogy: From Perception to Perspective (published 2013), that took shape from his 3 decades of experience in education and also A Design Manual for School Building.

Dr. Wasil’s professional experience is eclectic.

  • Setting up of schools from concept to operation

  • Managing schools

  • Running School Improvement Programmes in the GCC region with local Government support

  • Creating School Audit models and running the same in managed and partner schools.

Believing in the Almighty for his continued blessings, he has infinite faith in the potential of students, staff and the team that works with him. His general interests include literature, music and travelling and in the field of education, school improvement programmes, staff and leadership development and training programmes, curriculum and resource development, budgets and planning as well as starting schools.

These are his core interests within which he has proven track records.

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