Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Clarification on Indian Press Reports and GIF's email

This is a clarification regarding certain recent press reports from India (Mumbai Mirror of 15 April 2010 etc) and email sent by GIF (info@globalindian.org.sg) on 19 April 2010 with the same contents.

As you know, this blog was established as a forum for and by parents in Singapore. Comments are disabled until the matters that are sub-judice in the Singapore Civil Courts, are resolved.

The parent who was referred to (in the above email and press reports) wishes to clarify that certain falsehoods are stated and/or suggested in these reports.

The following is the true fact according to him:
This is to clarify that I have NOT implicated
  • any other parent, or
  • any current or former employee of GIIS, or
  • any current or former student of GIIS,
in any affidavit filed in the Singapore Courts.

So if you have posted anything on this blog, you should know that I have not implicated you in any way.

Disclaimer: FOR AVOIDANCE OF ALL DOUBT, PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS BLOG IS NOT AFFILIATED TO GLOBAL INDIAN FOUNDATION (GIF) OR ANY OF THEIR SCHOOLS, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO, GLOBAL INDIAN INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL (GIIS), MYGIIS, GLOBAL SCHOOL OR MYGLOBALSCHOOL OR ANY OTHER SCHOOL CONNECTED WITH GIIS OR GIF. To go to their web sites, click: About Foundation, GIIS Singapore, mygiis.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Update on Legal Proceedings

  • This is to inform that, as at Feb 2010, the Office of the Singapore Attorney General (AG) has stepped in and quashed GIIS's private Criminal Defamation proceedings against a parent who had helped to set up this blog.

    (This case/complaint was lodged on 10th Nov 2008 by Kaustubh Bodhankar on behalf of GIIS/GIF).

  • However, GIIS/GIF are still pursuing a civil suit (see below) which has also been in the Court for about a year.

Disclaimer: FOR AVOIDANCE OF ALL DOUBT, PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS BLOG IS NOT AFFILIATED TO GLOBAL INDIAN FOUNDATION (GIF) OR ANY OF THEIR SCHOOLS, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO, GLOBAL INDIAN INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL (GIIS), MYGIIS, GLOBAL SCHOOL OR MYGLOBALSCHOOL OR ANY OTHER SCHOOL CONNECTED WITH GIIS OR GIF. To go to their web sites, click: About Foundation, GIIS Singapore, mygiis.

Monday, April 27, 2009

IMPORTANT UPDATE -- LEGAL THREAT TO THIS BLOG/FORUM

To our readers:

This is to inform you that, as of 31 March 2009, a parent who is an editor of this blog/forum has come under legal threat from Global Indian Foundation (GIF) regarding this blog/forum. As such, the future existence and continuation of this blog/forum could be uncertain.

To deal with allegations made by Global Indian Foundation in the lawsuit:
  • Further reader comments are now blocked (with immediate effect)
  • Reader comments, that were alleged by GIF and Mr. Atul Temurnikar to be defamatory to them, are examined and may be sanitized or removed. (Please refer to already existing rules and a precedent. Deletions will be indicated where possible).
P.S. If you have any comments or suggestions regarding these matters, please e-mail them to editorparent2 [AT] gmail [DOT] com. Please bear with us if we are not able to respond individually.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Teachers' Day Wishes

A very happy teachers' day to all GIIS Teachers !

On behalf of all parents, we are happy to extend our Best Wishes to all teachers of GIIS Queenstown, East Coast and Balestier campuses.

Parents appreciate the many excellent and dedicated teachers who teach at GIIS. Parents and students are forever indebted to these teachers. As parents, we have very limited opportunities to express our deep appreciation to the best teachers.

Dear Parents, let us use this opportunity to write down here, our best wishes and commendations to those individual teachers who have made a difference to our child's education. (Click on the "comments" link at the bottom to add your appreciation messages -- please take care not to let out the name of the teacher).

(Please do not let out the name of the teacher whom we want to appreciate, due to the high risk involved as rival schools are on the look out for good teachers. It is OK to write: "The physics teacher of class 9C is doing a wonderful job" or "KG teacher M.S. has encouraged my child a lot" etc. Thank you for your kind co-operation in this regard).

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Dr Shashi Tharoor not involved with the school. What next?

Dr Shashi Tharoor not involved with the school, unfortunately

When Dr Tharoor's patronship was announced (see this blog's report,March 2008) many parents welcomed it, if only owing to Tharoor's stature and reputation.

Dr Tharoor, speaking at GIIS (February 2008), had stressed transparency and good governance. He was widely seen as the best man to provide moral leadership, the missing factor at GIF.

[ Why do we say that GIIS and GIF continue to be stealthy and devious ?

- because GIIS continues to hush up its CBSE XII 12th exam results for 2007-2008 (available only at this blog till this day).

- because CBSE X 10th exam result alone was conveyed to us in part, not trusting us with the full truth, and various IB results have also been covered up (see here) - except for Apoorva Sachdeva's brilliant individual performance which continues to be purveyed to media in promotion of the self-proclaimed leader of the diaspora.

- because newsletters continue to be sent to all of us, full of unjustifiable self-praise, partial truths, convenient exaggerations and evidently stage-managed media sound-bites.

- because GIF Vice President (CS Dharmadhikari) has abdicated his responsibility, failing to respond to the plea of the parents (report from DNA India Newspaper, Mumbai) on points raised in our open letter. Dharmadhikari's "slip" has clearly revealed to us, where the loyalties of this ex-"Justice" really belong: far from the side of Justice, but closely tied to his kith, kin and clan.

- because prospective parents waiting at the reception get to see none of the above, but brightly lit photos suggesting a rosy picture of the school (a famous one shows PM Lee giving an "award" to Temurnikar. The context of this "award" is only to be inferred from the small print in an old newsletter, and who reads small print anyway ?).

- the list goes on... ]


Fired up by Tharoor's speech about governance and transparency, one of our parent volunteers took on a task for himself. Starting out from an address published in this blog, he finally found himself in touch with Dr Tharoor's office, after weeks of untiring effort.

While Dr Tharoor stands firmly on the side of good governance and transparency, the volunteer parent was unable to convince him to take an active interest in GIIS/GIF's affairs with the diaspora.

Below is Dr Tharoor's message, meant for all parents. (recepient's name removed)
_____
On 7/22/08, Holly Ellis wrote:
> Dear ______,
>
> Dr. Tharoor has played no active role as a patron of the school and has not
> had any contact from the school since his visit to Singapore in February.
> Unfortunately, due to his extensive travel and meeting schedule he does not
> have the time to delve into the merits of the claims and counter-claims, but
> of course wishes the students and teachers all the best.
>
>
> Thank you,
> Holly
>
> Holly Ellis
> Assistant to Dr. Shashi Tharoor
>
> Afras Ventures
> 230 Park Avenue
> Suite 2525
> New York, NY 10169-0005

That was unexpected, as GIF continues to claim Dr Tharoor as one of its "key leaders" in all media publicity. GIF claims in "Bridge Singapore" magazine (May 2008) that:

"The Global Indian Foundation (GIF) ....is led by internationally acclaimed and eminent leaders, such as Prof. M G K Menon, Justice Dharmadhikari, N R Narayana Murthy, Dr. Karan Singh, Dr. Hari Harilela and Dr. Shashi Tharoor."

The matter of approaching Dr. Tharoor, has hit a dead end. The parent has given up.

Should we give up ? We welcome your thoughts and comments.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

GIIS, monopoly bus operator, gets away with price hikes !

... even as small time transport operators in S'pore think twice !

Straits Times 2/08/2008 Yeo Ghim Lay (ghimlay@sph.com.sg) reports: "School bus fares won't go up - for now". That applies to small time transport operators. But we all know that GIIS (our monopoly bus operator) has already hiked the bus fees steeply in May. (click picture to view report)

The reported story began when SSTA (S'pore School Transport Association) had recommended a $10 to $15 hike per month, to be effective from 1st August. The matter was then questioned by CASE. A gov't body (CCS) issued a warning against "price fixing". Now most operators say "no hike" or some say "modest hikes".

From CCS (Competition Commission of Singapore Gov't) statement: CCS understands that the school bus operators are selected periodically by school committees based on several criteria including competitive bus fares. There is therefore a competitive process for the most efficient and responsive school bus operators to be selected. There is no necessity for any price guidelines to be issued.

In GIIS's case ? The school itself is the bus operator. (We pay bus fees to GIIS, not any other party. GIIS makes a profit. GIIS pays to TnG, the current sub contractor. Therefore, GIIS is the bus operator. Evidence, see: GIIS 2005 ACCOUNTS ).

The company GIIS, as a bus operator, is a monopoly and has imposed a steep bus fee hike on us parents. It is now clear from this newspaper report that only a monopoly like GIIS will be able to hike by $28 per month and get away with it (see previous topic: transport ).

Because of this peculiar situation, GIIS, unlike most other schools, is not on the side of parents when it comes to school transport.

GIIS: In the light of the CCS statement, GIIS as a company has to be seen as proper and not seen as abusing your monopoly position or setting high prices due to your own conflict of interest. So we think the bus fee hike should be cut to $10 or $15 per month, which is fair, and it cannot be the $28 that you have already applied unilaterally, which is just brutal overcharging by a monopoly. We understand the reality of the fuel hikes, so we will support you on $10 to $15 range.

Parents approaching CASE or CCS will not look good on GIIS. Parents will not do it as a first option naturally being worried about victimisation etc. But we can register our dissatisfaction in many other ways too, to make an impact and get a fair deal.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

I am Sweet and I have Aids: French Verbs Avoir & Etre

"I am Sweet" and "I have Aids"

The principle is simple: It is easier to remember 10 new words in a familiar language than 3 new words in an unfamiliar one.

SOUND ASSOCIATION is a very powerful memory technique that can be used to assist in Foreign Language Learning.

Here is a FUN way to remember the French verbs TO BE (être) and TO HAVE (avoir).

VERB TO BE (être)

I am --> I am SWEEt --> Je suis
You are --> You are ESsential --> Tu es
He/She is --> He is ESTablished --> Il est
We are --> We are SOMEbody --> Nous sommes
You (pl) are --> You are ETErnal --> Vous êtes
They are --> They are SO Naughty --> Ils sont

VERB TO HAVE (avoir)

I have --> I have AIds --> J’ai
You have --> You have ASthma --> Tu as
He/She has --> He/She has Anemia --> Il a
We have --> We have AVON cosmetics --> Nous avons
You (pl) have --> You have A VErsaci bag --> Vous avez
They have --> They have ONTario friends --> Ils ont

By Nageeb Gounjaria, Language Specialist, Frenchfaster Singapore

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Charity or not Charity ? Profit or Non-Profit ?

It is time for GIIS+GIF to have whistleblower protection
F.A.Q

  1. Is GIF (Foundation) a charity ? Ans. Yes. GIF is registered as a charity.
  2. Is GIIS (School) a charity ? Ans. No. GIIS, as registered under company registration laws, is not a charity.
  3. Is GIF (Foundation) a non-profit ? Ans: Yes. GIF has sufficiently high expenditure (!) and does not pay out dividends, so as to maintain non-profit status.
  4. Is GIIS (School) a non-profit ? Ans: No. GIIS makes profit and is legally permitted to do so.
But: These facts above do not give GIF (exact words are: any charity that is "doing good"), "the license to operate in anyway convenient", if we go by Mr Gerard Ee, current Chairman of NKF (Straits Times 19/07/2008).

Many Singapore charities are under the scanner. Last week, the former Chairman of Ren Ci was "charged with forgery, conspiracy and misuse of funds". Report of 16 July Channel NewsAsia:

Former Chairman of Ren Ci has been charged with forgery, conspiracy and misuse of funds.

The ex-Chairman faces charges for alleged criminal breach of trust, one count of forgery for the purpose of cheating, and one count of abetment for allegedly falsifying accounts.

He also faces six charges under the Charities Act for allegedly providing false information over a decade.

Two of his associates, Raymond Yeung and Phua Seow Hua, were also alleged to have gone into conspiracy with the venerable and were also charged in court on Tuesday.

This is the second case in Singapore where a large charity and its leaders have been charged with mismanaging funds. The first was the National Kidney Foundation and its ex—CEO, TT Durai.
(SPH report by cheekin@sph.com.sg)

The Straits Times report on charities [by Radha Basu, radhab@sph.com.sg] "Back on their feet again" should ease all worry of us parents who are shocked by documents on GIIS and GIF regarding fees and funds collected. [Refer to our earlier articles on 2005 accounts, 2006 accounts, fee rise analysis -Ed].

Singapore being not a 'noisy' place (as compared to India), means that most of us expat Indian parents will just stay silent. [as long as they wanted to continue in the school without undue pressure. -Ed] Anyway, if this was in India, parents could have screamed aloud but managements would still go scot free, with all their money and connections to pull ! In Singapore you don't scream, you have to show patience, but ultimately there is faith in the system that those who do wrongs will not go free. It is a matter of time.

NKF saga dragged on for 3 years. Ultimately law and order prevailed. Parents should be happy, how swiftly cleanup was initiated with minimum disturbance to NKF patients. Which means, in the event of a probe on GIIS+GIF, students, teachers and parents have nothing to fear or worry about. We can expect the authorities to haul up those who did wrongs, or abetted wrongs or neglected their duty to prevent wrongs, but day to day operation will continue smoothly.

From the ST report:
"July 2005. NKF CEO T.T. Durai's lawsuit against Singapore Press Holdings leads to revelations that he has a $600,000 annual salary and travels first-class.

The NKF is also found to have inflated patient figures. Further scrutiny reveals that only 10 cents in every donation dollar go to patients.

In a culmination of court proceedings that drag on for three years, Durai goes to jail to serve a three-month corruption sentence in June 2008, nearly three years after the scandal erupted."

NKF's new Chairman Mr Gerard Ee said:
'Often charities forget that they are enterprises with a social mission. Just because they are doing good is not licence to operate in any way convenient.'

Whistleblower Protection

Other ST reports [Not on website. 'Road to Recovery', 19/07/2008 Radha Basu radhab@sph.com.sg & Janice Heng janiceh@sph.com.sg] mentioned Whistleblower Protection: A policy which protects employees who report wrongdoing. Prof Mak Yuen Teen (expert in governance and ethics at NUS, who also helped to clean up NKF and SATA) said that whistleblower protection "is especially important for charities", and "routine internal audits don't always pick the problems". SATA's previous CEO was found guilty and asked to go after a scandal in 2005 (a private company registered by the CEO came to light), but now, the "new" SATA protects whistleblowers.

NKF ans SATA are stronger as a result.

As well meaning parents, we suggest GIIS and GIF authorities, principals, board, management, auditors, finance professionals, and all advisors (whether inactive or active) to take note of the above and do the right thing. It is never too late.

[If you are interested in knowing about legally protected whistleblowing, governance and ethics, please read this article by Prof Mak Yuen Teen. Highly recommended. -Ed]

-------
READER COMMENTS removed on 14/4/2009:
1. eyeopener 'Magnum' comment
10 Dec 2008 11:52 PM Ref #28
2. Anonymous comment February 8, 2009 12:01 PM

Friday, July 11, 2008

GIIS Queenstown CBSE Std 10 Results 2008 : Full Facts

(We are sorry for the delay in completing this since Bala's departure. The blog/forum is short of volunteers and seems moving towards a natural death.)
Dear Parents,

We have all received the Newsletter No 217 from GIIS on CBSE Std 10 results for 2008.

At the same time, if you read this blog regularly, you also know that GIIS has covered up the CBSE Std 12 results for 2008 so far - no newsletter, no announcement. GIIS Management does not want you to know. But we brought you the full information here: Class XII Results.

Similarly you may know that IB results for 2008 are out, and is being covered up, even though one student, Ms Apoorva Sachdev, has scored a brilliant 100%. We congratulate Apoorva for her brilliant performance, achieved in spite of all the drawbacks and distractions of being in GIIS.

We have posted below, the full detail of Std 10 results for GIIS QT for 2008. It shows that average performance dropped compared to 2007 for the major academic subjects. The Newsletter told us a different story. So we know that Newsletter No. 217 contains a statistical lie.

COMPARISON OF AVERAGE RESULTS 2007 and 2008 for important Subjects
Subject Average in 2007 Average in 2008 Difference
Maths 87 85 -2
Science 83 82 -1
Soc. Studies 90 85 -5

Question: Why did average marks drop ?
According to newspaper reports, all-India average marks went up !

According to the report in The Hindu 28th May: Class X marks have gone up all over India in 2008.
“The initial feedback has been that the mean marks in different subjects have improved and there has been a good average performance. The pass percentages have increased in the three subjects in which High Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) was introduced (Maths, Science, Social Science),” said the CBSE chairperson. from The Hindu 30th May report.

GIIS Management, Mr GSS Rao, Mr Temurnikar, would you like to explain how GIIS bucks the trend ? And how you transformed a drop in performance into an "OUTSTANDING ACADEMIC FEAT (Title of Newsletter 217)" ?

Details below:


















Name. Engl Hindi Tamil French Urdu Maths Sci S.St Addl addl. subj Total1 Total2
1 A G 90 94
99 88 99 79 EB 470 549
2
G K 90

88
95 96 97 78 EB 466
544
3

S K 94 86


96 93 96 73 EB 465
538
4
A B 92 79


98 98 97 63 EB 464
527
5
D G 91

88



99 89 95 97 In.IT 462

559
6

R Gh87 93




96 90 95 98 In.IT 461



559
7



Kr S 94



85







98 89 95 70 EB 461



531
8



Pr N 91







83



95 95 93 97 In.IT 457



554
9



Sr Su 86



92







89 91 96 97 In.IT 454



551
10
Sw S 90 89

94 86 95 78 Ptng 454
532
11
Al Dh 87 90



95 93 88 75 EB 453
528
12
Sa M 88 87

97 88 93 73 EB 453
526
13



T S 86





81


94 94 94 74 EB 449



523
14



U P 90 89





95 90 85 99 In.IT 449



548
15



Sri 81



88







98 88 94 77 Ptng 449


526
16



C S 78 90











95 93 91 82 EB 447



529
17



A K 90 81











95 95 85 99 In.IT 446



545
18



N B 86 88











91 84 95 64 EB 444



508
19



A Gos. 81 88











89 90 95 100 In.IT 443



543
20



Ne K 87 86











85 90 94 72 EB 442



514
21



R Ar 81 81











90 91 97 99 In.IT 440



539
22



Vi D 86 79











95 86 94 95 In.IT 440



535
23



Am S 83







81



98 91 86 100 In.IT 439



539
24



Me Ti 86 83











95 90 85 61 EB 439



500
25



Sa Ba 82 90











95 85 80 69 EB 432



501
26



Sh Ga 86



73







95 85 93 99In.IT432



531
27



V Sr 82







80



91 91 86 99 In.IT 430



529
28



J Al 84 80





88 89 89 57 EB 430
487
29
Su Ba 83

71
95 88 90 51 EB 427
478
30
Pr Ra 87

81
77 85 95 99 In.IT 425



524
31



Pr Ma 92







76



87 93 77 56 EB 425



481
32



A L N 81



86







78 92 87 100 In.IT 424



524
33



Sri I 82



90







95 87 69 98 In.IT 423



521
34



Su R 86
89







80 81 86 97 In.IT 422



519
35



B Se 90



82







82 74 93 73 EB 421



494
36



Va Pa 80 75








92 87 86 65 EB 420



485
37



Pr Bh 81 78











90 89 81 82 EB 419



501
38


Ay Si 77 83
87 82 89 100 In.IT 418



518
39



An B 84 82











83 73 95 97 In.IT 417

514
40



Pa Ch 88 76











90 85 77 95 In.IT 416



511
41



Shr Me 87 72











84 87 85 96 In.IT 415



511
42



Ka Mu 72 85







75 90 92 99 In.IT 414
513
43



Aa si 90 80






86 85 73 65 Ptng 414


479
44



Ach 86



81







95 81 71 55 EB 414

469
45
Ak Me 90

59



95 80 85 95 In.IT 409



504
46



Ri Ga 80 79



84 87 77 67 EB 407
474
47

Pra D 79 87





80 77 83 59 EB 406
465
48
Ras R 75 78 91 86 75 98 In.IT 405



503
49



Sh Bo 74







64



94 83 89 96 In.IT 404



500
50



M Pu 73 90











85 73 78 98 In.IT 399



497
51



Vi Pr 86 80











70 74 86 96 In.IT 396



492
52



Chi Th 83 80











73 73 85 66 EB 394



460
53



La So 84



70







85 70 83 91 In.IT 392



483
54



Na Pa 80 70











71 74 92 61 EB 387



448
55



Sau Bi 87 78











61 77 78 94 In.IT 381



475
56



Sun Ka 74



80







90 63 71 60 EB 378



438
57



Sid Ra 85







55



66 76 94 62 EB 376



438
58



Pr Ma 90 57











76 75 78 96 In.IT 376



472
59



Saa H 83











55 82 82 69 60 EB 371



431
60



Di Bh 88







53



71 71 85 62 EB 368



430
61



Arv Ka 83



64







68 76 75 46 EB 366



412
62



Kr N 72







63



83 75 72 96 In.IT 365



461
63



Ro Jo 66 70











74 76 76 93 In.IT 362



455
64



Ca Ly 80







58



65 78 81 58 Ptng 362



420
65



Say Ba 75







51



90 78 58 95 In.IT 352



447
66



Thy R 76







40



92 70 73 67 EB 351



418
67



Ad R 81







50



87 59 71 95 In.IT 348



443
68



Pu Ta 66 63











67 54 85 64 EB 335



399
69



Se Ni 75







50



61 59 86 56 EB 331



387
70



Ash Vi 78



61







48 53 75 61 EB 315



376
71



Su Sh 70 60











48 52 72 93 In.IT 302



395
72



Ma Na 73 42











48 50 70 58 EB 283



341


Average/Highest/Lowest by Subject












Engl. Hindi Tamil French Urdu Maths Sci S.St Addl























Tot. 5981 3118 1129 1184 55 6121 5888 6130 5795























Avg. 83.07 79.95 80.64 65.78 55 85.01 81.78 85.14 80.49























Highest 94 94 92 88



99 98 99 100























Lowest 66 42 61 40



48 50 58 46



Average/Highest/Lowest for Addl. Subjects
Addl. Subject Average Highest Lowest
Introduction to IT 96.94 100 91
Elements of Business 67.29 82 46
Painting 75 78 58
Comparison of school's performance, 2007 vs 2008 (in 3 major subjects)
Major Subject Average in 2007 Average in 2008 Difference
Maths 87 85 -2
Science 83 82 -1
S Studies 90 85 -5