When opening a new school, most individuals or members of the Society, find difficult to give a name to the school, which is acceptable to all the members and catchy for all.
What’s in a name, one might ask. A rose would smell just as sweet by any other name. The bard was not wrong when he alluded to this. But in the present times, a name holds as much importance as anything else. Let us take the name of a school, for example. In urban areas, the name of the school connects with the parents first, even before they have seen the inside of one. The millennial prefers a name which resonates with his aspirations and goals. Hence, he would give more weight to a foreign/English sounding name than an indigenous one. Let us say we give him an option to choose between Lotus Valley International School and Chaudhury Devilal Higher Secondary School; we know which he is going to choose. (The choice is no reflection on the standards of either school.)
How to choose a name for your school? When a person or a group of people get together to start a school, the first thing that they have to decide is its name. The name of the school must project the vision of the promoters if there is one. Secondly, the name must be attractive and fitting the cultural milieu for which it is intended. It helps if the spelling is easy and a domain name is also available. Generally, names of Gods, religion or even the state and country’s names are taken as a school name. Thus, The Indian Public School is connected to the Indian ethos. Similarly, Delhi Public School shows that it is primarily of Delhi and is easy to remember and is easily fixed in the minds of the people. On the other hand, a name like Poorna Pragyna School is difficult to remember and pronounce.
Nowadays, it is quite common to hear the word ‘international’ affixed after every other school even when it is totally rational in its make-up and curriculum. This is because the general belief is that these schools are much better than others. Sometimes, these schools operated from residential spaces with an indigenous curriculum and still called themselves an ‘international school’. Another popular suffix is ‘public’. A school can be given any name with ‘public’ attached to it to make it catchier. Hence, we have Delhi Public School rather than Delhi School. ‘Global academy’ and ‘World School’ are some of the recent additions to the list.
There are as many names as a creative mind can think of. One has to see whether it makes any sense and it must connect in peoples’ minds. But even a very catchy and well-researched name cannot guarantee the success of the school if the other parameters like curriculum, faculty, fees etc., do not match up. Whether a school has an ethnic name like Maadhyam, Sanskriti or Vindhyachal or a foreign sounding name like Mountfort, Jesus & Mary or Bridgeville, if it has to do well, it will. An appropriate name is just the first step on the ladder to build a school.