Milestones: The Story of Springdales
~September 1st 1955 ~
The birth of Springdales!
Springdales opens as a small Kindergarten at 1/2 East Patel Nager, New Delhi – the residence of the Kumar family- with 24 children and 3 teachers – Mrs. Rajni Kumar, Mrs Sanyogta Puri and Ms. Subhasmohini Puri.
~ December 1955 ~
Springdales holds its first Annual Fete – a joyful get together of fun and games in the small garden at the back of the house.
~ 1956 ~
The Patel Education Society is Registered under the Registration of Societies Act as a Charitable and Education Society with Mr Gowardhandas, father of Mr. Yudhister Kumar and a well-known patriot and freedom fighter of Punjab in the days of Martial Law became the first Chairperson of the Patel Education Society. The society took its name from Patel Nagar, where the School was situated. It has since been renamed as The Springdales Education Society.
The first Managing Committee set up for the School with Mr. B D Bhatia, Child Psychologist and Director of the Child Guidance Clinic as its first Chairperson, and Mr. Yudhister Kumar as the Founder Manager.
First international dignitaries to visit the Primary School at East Patel Nagar – Dr. Zamin (Minister of Education, USSR) and Madame Jamila (Minister of Culture, Uzbekistan).
Springdales organises its first International Children’s Festival of dance and music at NPL Auditorium attended by 3 Embassies – Ghana, USSR and Iran. Chief Guest Raj Kumari Amrit Kaur (Minister of Health)
Springdales adopts its School Motto ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ – The World is a Family. A phrase suggested by the elder brother of Mr. Yudhister Kumar, Mr. Vyas Dev – a Sanskrit scholar.
~ 1957 ~
The School introduces the House System.
~ 1958 ~
Springdales holds its first Sports Meet at the DAV School grounds in Patel Nagar.
~ 1959 ~
Prime Minister Jawahar Lal (Chacha) Nehru is the Chief Guest at the International Children’s Festival – ‘The More We Are Together’ at the NPL Auditorium.
New branch of Springdales opens at 13 West Patel Nagar – with Mrs. Sanyogta Puri as Headmistress- to accommodate the growing number of students.
~ 1960 ~
Springdales celebrates 5 years!
Springdales receives its first recognition by the Directorate of Education by Director Mr. B D Bhatt under the Punjab European Educational Code for Anglo Indian Schools.
The schools send up its first batch of 9 students as private candidates for the Delhi State High School Examination. Nirmala Menon stands first among all girl candidates in the state and joins AIIMS as a medical student.
Springdales affiliates to the Council for the Senior Cambridge Examination.
~ 1961 ~
New branch of Springdales for Junior Class opens at Kirti Nagar with Mrs. Santosh Kanwar as the first Headmistress.
~ 1962 ~
The school is granted a land site of 1.8 acres on Pusa Road by the Ministry of Works and Housing.
Mr. Yudhister Kumar constructs temporary building on site to accommodate senior students. Junior classes remain at East Patel Nagar.
~ 1963 ~
Springdales sends its first batch of students for the Senior Cambridge Examination.
~ 1963 ~
A Board of Governors of distinguished educationists set up for the school with Dr. K.G Saiyidain as its Chairperson, Dr. VS Jha (former Vice Chancellor, Benaras University), Mr. KPS Menon (India’s first Foreign Secretary), Mrs. Muriel Was (Educational Advisor to the Govt. of India) and Gen. Kumaramangalam (India’s Chief of Army staff) as its members.
Springdales celebrates its first decade in education
Springdales presents its first major cultural performance ‘Man through the Ages’ – scripted by Mr. and Mrs. Kumar and directed as a labour of love by Mr. Ebrahim Alkazi (Director, National School of Drama) with Mrs. Roshan Alkazi in charge of costumes and permanent stage set designed and constructed by Mr. Alkazi. Over 800 students took part with an audience of 1800 people.
~ 1966 ~
Springdales holds first Swimming Meet at the Railway Swimming Pool.
~ 1967 ~
Springdales hosts its first five day National Students Camp on International Understanding.
The Gorky Club was established for developing ties of friendship between Indian and Russian Children. A ‘Twinning Programme’ with School No.26 in Moscow was developed.
~ 1968 ~
The Springdales Education Society purchased 8 acres of land at Chattarpur for a Work Experience Farm for the students.
Shri Zakir Hussain, President of India inaugurates the first wing of the building at Pusa Road. He told the students – “Be proud of your building, but also let the building be proud of you”. The building was designed by Anand, Apte & Jhabwala.
~ 1969 ~
Springdales holds the first of a series of mammoth pageants and cultural presentations
at Rabindra Rangshala attended by over 3000 people.
~ 1970 ~
The Society purchases an old property at Mussoorie for a Holiday Home for Students during the Summer Break.
~ 1971 ~
Mr. Msmaing, representative of the ANC visits the school on UN Day to address students about Apartheid in Africa. The Africa Club of Springdales takes birth.
Springdales introduces Russian as a 3rd language under the Indo-Soviet Cultural Programme. The first school in the country to do so.
Springdales mounts a massive public campaign for removal of a liquor shop opposite the school premises – and succeeds.
~ 1972 ~
OSA – The Old Springdalians Association – takes birth under the Chairmanship of Mr. Niranjan Ajwani, Batch of 1963.
~ 1974 ~
Springdales squad chosen as first Flag Bearers to lead the school children of Delhi in the Republic Day Parade.
~ 1976 ~
Mr. Yudhister Kumar- Founder Manager and a pillar of strength behind the school – dies of cancer.
~ 1978 ~
The Ministry gives 2.5 acres of land for playfields behind the school for the Pusa Road school.
~ 1979 ~
Springdales starts its Integrated Scholarship Scheme for talented students from economically deprived sections of society.
The school sends up the first batches from Secondary and Senior Secondary Examinations of CBSE under the new scheme of education.
~ 1980 ~
Springdales celebrates its Silver Jubilee – 25 years!
Foundation stone laying ceremony for the new building at Dhaula Kuan by Chairperson Admiral Pereira and the school children – dedicated to Mr. Yudhister Kumar.
Springdales Teachers Resource Centre set up at Pusa Road by the Society as a Silver Jubilee gift for the professional growth of teachers. Mrs. Saroja Sundarajan becomes the first Director of the centre, the first of its kind at the time.
~ November 1980 ~
President of India, Shri Sanjeeva Reddy presides over the Silver Jubilee celebrations at Pusa Road.
~ December 1980 ~
Springdales hosts its first 10 day National Integration Camp sponsored by the NCERT. The Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi received the delegates at her residence. President Reddy hosts reception for all the delegates at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
~ 1983 ~
Springdales School Dhaula Kuan takes birth on the new land site with classes from II-VII. Mrs. Jyoti Bose – Headmistress at Pusa Road – takes charge as Head of the School. The Ranbir Sen International Children’s Festival marks the first even at the school.
The Junior school at West Patel Nagar closes down and children are transferred to Dhaula Kuan.
Mrs. Rajni Kumar receives the Nehru Soviet Land Award, presented by Mr. Rajiv Gandhi, for her hard work in promoting International Friendship and Understanding among children of the world. She received a Gold Medal and a 2 week tour of the USSR.
~ 1985 ~
Springdales celebrates 30 years!
~ March 1988 ~
Springdales awarded the First Prize by Delhi Administration for its item ‘Towards Progress’ at the Republic Day Parade.
The School Song – ‘We Are Springdalians’ is written by Mr. Kuriakose Vari
Mrs. Rajni Kumar retires as Founder Principal after 32 years of service.
Mr. N. Tangri takes charge as Principal of Pusa Road.
Mrs. Jyoti Bose becomes Principal of the now full fledged Senior Secondary School at Dhaula Kuan.
This section shall be updated with more information periodically. We intend to chronicle the millions of memories of the thousands of Springdalians over the years. If you would like to contribute with pictures and/or information – write to the Editorial Team.