A pioneer in revolutionizing preschool learning, Kangaroo Kids International Preschool is one of India’s leading brands of preschools. Based on neuroscience and technology, the preschool provides holistic learning methodologies and a world-class learning experience, while continually modifying and enhancing a child’s early education system.
In a chat session with the #volocals campaign, the Jaipur franchise owner DIVYA AGARWAL, talks about her journey of making the initial stepping stones of life for the new generation of kids.
Hailing from a well-established business family, education has always been of utmost priority for her. Being a scholar herself, Mrs Agarwal aims at imparting knowledge and education to as many people as she can in her life so that they become well-equipped to face the ever-increasing competition of today’s world.
She completed her early schooling from her native city of Patna and then moved to Jaipur for higher education. She is always a meritorious student; she is a computer engineer from NMIMS, Mumbai, an MBA from ICFAI, Mumbai, and a research scholar. One of her research paper, “Prediction of Yahoo! Music Sequences on Users Musical Taste” has been published in global journals. She added another feather to her cap when she got recruited as a Financial Analyst in investment banking domain at her dream company J.P.Morgan Services India Private Limited from among hundreds of hopeful candidates and was entrusted with handling the Asia Continent.
After moving to Jaipur following her wedding, she joined IIIM Jaipur as an MBA/MCA Lecturer due to the dearth of corporate opportunities for women in the city. However, she soon realized that the best way to contribute to society and gain respect lies in the teaching profession.
Being brought up in a family of business, she always wanted to pave her own path and pursue something of her own. “My dream is to open a university that focuses on imparting quality education and not making money,” she says. To fulfil her dream, she decided to start from the base, nurturing young minds via preschool learning. Thereby, she became associated with the Kangaroo Kids Education Limited (KKEL).
She preferred KKEL over other brands, was due to the charismatic founder, Ms Lina Ashar herself, who has personally designed the unique curriculum of KKEL. “As a franchise owner, if I ever need any guidance, she is just a call away. After being into the education field for quite some time now, I don’t think any other brand offers an exhaustive curriculum like KKEL,” she says.
The preschool had a modest beginning on July 8, 2019, with only three students on board. However, Mrs Agarwal was always confident that their unwavering dedication to providing individual attention and care to every student and ensuring the child’s safety would eventually help the institution flourish significantly. Currently, the preschool is just 11 months old, but has over 20 students.
“We have a complete kid-friendly infrastructure where there is hardly any loophole for the child to get hurt.”
Mrs Agarwal believes that every new venture requires an optimistic outlook and patience during the initial stages. Every day comes with a new package of adventure, learning, and experience with the kids, plus she is grateful to the parents who have entrusted their children’s crucial phases of growth and development to the institution.
Throughout her rewarding journey, her family, especially her husband, has been the pillar of support. They have always wanted her to work independently and fulfil her wishes. Being a team-player, she believes that the key to a successful venture lies in the boss-employee bonding. She is herself a very helpful person, and in return, she has been awarded with a very cooperative team of teachers with whom she shares a strong rapport. When she planned to organize the first carnival at school, the creative team and the Senior Manager of the marketing team jumped into action to put up a grand event with minimal investment in just 24 hours.
The major challenge that she has faced is ensuring parents’ trust in a new school. “Jaipur being a tier II city, most of the people here still fail to understand the importance of admitting the child in a playschool at the age of two. So gaining the masses and making parents understand the importance of learning at a very young age has been a constant challenge. One of the major provocations has been the waiting in-phase after the parents complete the inquiry, and we wait to hear the decision,” she recalls.
However, being the Director, Mrs Agarwal tries to enlighten them about the advantage of having their kids study in the “best facility in this growing, dynamic environment we are living in.”
Mrs Agarwal believes that apart from managing finances, it is not that challenging to inaugurate a school or organization. The main mantra is to continue having a personal and emotional connection with the venture. She prioritizes Determination, Patience, Motivation, Tenacity, and Consistency to be her focal points since her time in Mumbai. “If an individual builds these qualities in him and ensures their presence in the roughest phases too, I would say there is no power in the world stopping you from achieving your goal and enjoying the goal.”
The infrastructure and student-teacher ratio of Kangaroo Kids are the two significant factors of attraction and success. They make sure to give individual attention to each child, and their demands are met appropriately, which is unlikely in overpopulated classrooms of several institutions. The perfect blend of modernized, safe, and secure learning, make preschool a fun-learning experience. Moreover, they provide customized daycare with the curriculum at an affordable price, so that women of Jaipur can go to work at ease.
“I believe that a tree does not grow right after its first seed is sown. Similarly, starting a preschool does not make it a successful one right away,” says Mrs Agarwal. It is through dedication, motivation, and immense hard work of the owners, managers, teachers, staff, parents, and the students that a desired outcome is achieved. The constant support of her husband served as an added advantage. “It is your family and your team who can help make anything an accomplishment coupled with the right guidance,” she adds.
Upon asking about how they are dealing with the global pandemic, she said: “After the outbreak, we understood how people are struggling with their job and trying to meet with basic needs, so we have given 20 per cent off on annual fees. Besides, I believe the brain of a child develops max until five years of age, so we shouldn’t deprive them of education. Keeping this in mind, we have come up with a monthly plan for kids all over the globe. I make sure that if kids are unable to attend a particular session, then I send recordings and worksheets.”
Mrs Agarwal is looking forward to two future endeavours: opening up Billabong High, the high school of Kangaroo Kids, and further expanding it exponentially by opening a university of hers together. She also plans on getting a doctorate in the future and work on women empowerment. She provides flexible working hours for her female teachers to find a desirable equilibrium between their career and household responsibilities.
“My ultimate aim is to educate the masses and provide the best of facilities at affordable fees.” With this in mind, Mrs Agarwal is striding confidently towards an enriching future along with Kangaroo Kids.
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