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Annual Report 2017-18

A letter from
Saurabh Taneja

CEO, The Akanksha Foundation

Akanksha has always been on a continuous path of learning about the bluose of education in a rapidly changing world. The year 2017-2018 was a year of ‘Looking Ahead’ for all of us. Building on Akanksha’s 27 years of experience during the previous two phases, 1991-2007 when Akanksha ran the after-school centres and 2007-2017 when we transitioned into running 20 schools, we wanted to define what the next decade in Akanksha’s journey would look like.

We asked ourselves 2 fundamental questions:


What would define excellent education in the coming ten years and hence, what would an Akanksha graduate look like?


How do we further our vision of serving ALL children?

Read the full letter

The Akanksha Foundation is a non-profit organisation (across Mumbai and Pune) with a mission to provide children from low-income communities with a high-quality education, enabling them to maximize their potential and transform their lives.









Today, we are one of the largest urban networks of public-private partnership schools of its kind in India. Looking ahead, we seek to expand our network of schools, share our effective practices and advocate for quality school reform for children across India.

The Akanksha School Project Turns 10!

In 2007, Akanksha aimed to create a model for high performing schools through The School Project, in collaboration with the Pune Municipal Corporation. Over the past 10 years, we have grown to 20 schools across Mumbai and Pune serving over 7400 children, in partnership with the PMC, PCMC, and the MCGM.

School Growth

Social Growth

School Development Review

Our biggest priority through the year was ensuring that our schools are making continuous progress in their classrooms as well as providing high-quality experience and support to every student and family we serve.

5 key parameters to evaluate our schools

Teacher Engagement Survey

We conduct School Culture Survey to draw insights on three key domains - relationship with leadership, mutual trust and respect, and teacher well being. The survey helps support the School Leaders to continuously strive towards maintaining a healthy school culture in alignment with our organisation’s values.

This year’s results:


positive responses on relationship with school’s leadership indicating faith in our school leaders.


positive responses on the culture of mutual trust and respect


positive responses on teacher well being

Nearly 300 teachers participated in the survey. 40% of the teachers were with the Akanksha Foundation between 1-3 years, and 34% were with the Foundation for more than 3 years. The survey measured leadership, respect and trust, teacher well being, and engagement.

Akanksha’s 3 Focus Areas

At Akanksha, we are continuously striving to strengthen our schools. We focus on three specific aspects that we believe would lead to the strengthening and development of our schools - Academic Achievement, Youth Development, and Community engagement.

Academic Achievement

Key Academic Achievement 2017-18


Student Retention


Teacher Attendance


Parent Attendance


Student Attendance

Our focus is on skill development for every child, and on balancing traditional and progressive teaching methods to enhance learning opportunities. To support this focus, we ensure that the teaching staff and School Leaders are provided with regular training and are supported by Akanksha’s central Network Support Team. Teaching and Leadership Staff are provided support in creating structured lesson and learning plans.

This years SSC Results

SSC Results

Stories of Achievements

Youth Development

Our focus aims to provide age appropriate character building and socio-emotional skill development. Teachers, counsellors and social workers collaborate to make these goals come alive in the school.

We encourage children and adults to openly discuss about the issues and challenges that affect learning and the well-being of children (like bullying, alcohol abuse, and domestic violence). These are addressed through effective listening and collaborative problem solving.

‘Mandala’ by Tohid, 13 years old, Akanksha student

Art for Akanksha

We believe that learning happens everywhere and in many innovative ways and the fewer the boundaries of subjects and content, the greater the learning. We put together a module of 35 lessons which brings together two very different subjects – Math and Art. It was designed for our Art and Math teachers to have fun with, explore, and go deeper for themselves and their students. These modules demonstrated that Math can be studied in different ways.

Community Engagement

Through the Community Engagement focus, our aim is to strengthen parent-teacher engagement to aid student learning outcomes. We focus on developing strategies to work with communities at large to work in transformational manner.

Social workers lead a team of parents and help equip them with knowledge and skills they can use to drive positive change within the school by developing life skills ranging from health, hygiene and nutritional awareness along with spoken English classes.


of Akanksha schools have fully functioning SMCs trained on a regular basis versus 66% across the country


of Akanksha schools have consistent parent development initiatives offered through the year

Akanksha’s Alumni

We have over 2500 School and Centre Alumni who have carved a strong path for themselves with their career and further studies.

Our Support and Engagement Program

In 2017, Akanksha initiated their Alumni Support and Engagement program to create an ecosystem of support for all alumni to fulfill their life goals.

The program aims to address the growing needs of the organization as it continues to evolve. To ensure that we support our alumni in the best possible manner, we conducted a round of research to understand the needs of our alumni. Through surveys, town halls and personal interviews, we arrived at the five key areas that needed to be addressed.

Alumni Impact


of our alumni have cleared Grade 12


School and Center Alumni


of our students passing the SSC enroll in Junior College


of our Alumni enroll in degree college to continue education

We focus on 5 key areas

Employment Support

Employment Support

Financial Support

Financial Support

Parental Engagement

Parental Engagement

College & Career Awareness

College & Career Awareness

Life Skills

Life Skills

Alumni Stories

I Dream Like You — Book Launch

A book featuring 25 of Akanksha’s alumni stories

This year we launched a book, edited by Saker Mistri, that highlights and celebrates 25 Akanksha stories. Each of the stories is a representation of the stories of the millions of young people in our country and the barriers that stand before them to reach their dreams. The book is about parents and teachers and the school as a community that has the power to change lives.

India School Leadership Institute

Established in 2013, India School leadership Institute (ISLI) is a project of Akanksha Foundation and among the first organisations in India dedicated to developing skills of School Leaders.



5.3 lakh




School Leaders include principals, headmasters/headmistresses & owners of Government, budget-private or low-income schools. ISLI aims to create a pipeline of leaders equipped to lead high performing schools for children of underserved communities and establish the benchmark for School Leadership training in India. The Fellowship Programme, which is specially designed to develop and improve their skills in order to provide a great education in their schools.


Akanksha 3.0

Being the change at Akanksha is living and leading by our values. It empowers us to transform our teams, our schools, and our organisation into all that it can be. Be The CHANGE articulates the spirit of our 6 core values.

Prove, Multiply & Advocate

Akanksha 3.0 is based on three principles — Prove, Multiply, and Advocate. Going into the future, Akanksha will create multiple ‘proof points’ through its schools, students and alumni who demonstrate the power of our vision. This network of our people and our schools will act as ‘multipliers’ and ‘advocates’ influencing school system reform through advocacy and partnerships.

Akanksha network to impact




Children & Alumni



1 Million


5 strategic focus areas for the next 3 years

Strengthening proof points through schools, students and alumni

Strengthening proof points through schools, students and alumni

Participate in policy advocacy through research & partnerships

Participate in policy advocacy through research & partnerships

Enable setting up 65 Akanksha inspired schools through a School Leadership Academy

Enable setting up 65 Akanksha inspired schools through a School Leadership Academy

Unleash the power of voice of our students, educators, parents to influence neighbourhood schools & the wider community

Unleash the power of voice of our students, educators, parents to influence neighbourhood schools & the wider community

Developing 15 more ‘proof points’ in new cities, or through innovative schools

Developing 15 more ‘proof points’ in new cities, or through innovative schools

Student Vision Framework

We envision all students graduate from our school empowered with a sense of Mastery, Autonomy & bluose for success in the 21st Century


Shapes the beliefs, actions and attitude of a person. They must be underpinned by knowledge and skills and therefore form the core of the student vision framework


Manage and recognise own emotions, develop and care and concern for others, nurture positive relationships, learn to solve problems and make responsible decisions

Key Knowledge domains

To be mastered by each Akanksha graduate to be successful in the 21st centuary, the global environment

New Competencies

These competencies are necessary for a globalised, digital interconnected world. We are hoping to develop this in our schools, going forward.

Our Values: Be The Change

Being the change at Akanksha, is living and leading by our values. It empowers us to transform our teams, our schools and our organisation into all that it can be.


We come together to reach our vision. We reach out to support each other in achieving our goals and we derive joy in other’s success.


We are here because we believe. We believe in our vision, mission and in our ability to achieve ambitious goals. We believe in each other’s potential to go beyond expectations.


We do what we say we will do. We take ownership of our actions. We hold ourselves and others accountable to the goals we set and our commitments.


We do whatever it takes! We are resilient and learn from our mistakes. We are persistent in our passion for long-term goals.


We embrace our diversity. We care deeply about each other and treat everyone with dignity.


We raise the bar and go beyond expectations. We strive to learn continuously and push ourselves to get better every day in the role we play. We derive enjoyment in working together, in each others success and in everything that we do.

Akanksha School Leadership Academy

The Akanksha School Leadership Academy aims to create transformational leaders who will overcome the challenges of educational inequity by designing schools that are progressive, rigorous and joyful for children. We aim to create visionary leaders who drive a learning environment that ensures success through academic achievement, social & emotional support, and a strong relationship with the community.

Four distinctive leadership competencies of our program

Our approach is grounded in immersing aspiring School Leaders in all aspects of school leadership through experiential learning and consistent focus on the leadership competencies. These competencies form the foundation of our program and aim to equip our aspiring school leaders with the skills and attitudes necessary to inspire and motivate a team of excellent educators, working together to provide children with a love for learning and life.

Designing a Vision

Designing a Vision

Instructional Leadership

Instructional Leadership

Strategic Thinking

Strategic Thinking

Developing People & Culture

Developing People & Culture