' St. Aloysius' High School, Kanpur

Action Replay 2008-1977

Time stays - we go' is well known adage... Everything we do, everything we say, we are accounted for. Not many of us can achieve the pinnacle of greatness so that the world remembers us. But surely, in our little corner of the earth, we can be great and for that we will be remembered. Aloysius has been that little corner of the earth where greatness of individuals will be endeared by all those who lived through that era of time. I joined St. Aloysius on the 7th of January 1977 and through those years many great people have come and gone, leaving behind their footprints in the sands of time. I will recount in brief, the years that have flown by commencing with the present and slowly rewinding to the past. Father Edward Goveas, a highly principled man full of fortitude and determination has strengthened the school at its base. He has brought about awareness and loyalty to the school amongst the staff and students. He has converted Aloysius into an IT centre for learning and recording. His organizational skills and keen concern for everything be it sports, concerts, national events is genuine and from the heart.. A tireless man who wants to see Aloysius reigning supreme is his vision and he is close to it. He joined the institution as principal on the 3rd of July, 2005.

Father James Francis, formerly principal of St. Joseph's School, Rihandnagar took over as principal on the 7th of July, 2003. He was indeed a stimulant for hard work. He loved facts and figures, had great charisma and loved to rule in his own uncanny style. He changed the face of Aloysius brought it closer to the modern world of computers and information technology. He was a great thinker, highly independent and had a great sense of humour. His stay was short but the impact he made was great.

Rewinding further till July 1997, a remarkable change in all physical forms as far as the geographical layout of Aloysius is concerned came about by Fr. Stany Michael D'Souza who joined Aloysius after his tenure as Principal, St. Joseph's College Allahabad. He took over the reigns of governance on the 5th of July, 1997. Fences came up, school boundary walls were increased in dimension, roads were reinforced with concrete, windows got a dress-up with meshes, tree plantation drives were highly encouraged, trips, excursions were given a boost, many new faces amongst the staff were visible, class XII was introduced. Aloysius was rocking, indeed. There was music, games, dramas, LTS clubs, and contests of every kind. The old blue and white uniform suddenly disappeared and dark grey suddenly appeared. The Golden Jubilee was celebrated with lights, bangs and action plays. The founder of St. Aloysius Fr. Pereira was escorted from his cottage in Shimla to be the Chief Guest a the festivities. Fr. Stany worked wonders and suddenly, without a whisper, for his commitment to the Diocese is such, left for Jagdishpur.

April 8th, 1988 saw the arrival of a former vice principal taking over Aloysius as Principal. This man was no other than Fr. Lawrence Fernandes. He took over at a time when Aloysius was facing an internal crisis. He quickly got down to business and settled the roaring waters to a quiet flow. A few were still roaring but with his style of functioning he divided the roars into whispers. Many of us say that it was during his time that Aloysius underwent a golden era of fame and success. A long line for admissions, much political and police clout was needed to get admission into Aloysius, no matter which class. Aloysius had to expand, the strength was increasing in leaps and bounds. The servant's quarters were demolished and a new primary block mushroomed instead. Aloysius brought home laurels at inter-school competition the most striking was the much coveted inter-school Debate held in 1994. Aloysius beat Kanpur's elite convent that is St. Mary's taking away the trophy which was so attached to the convent. Trips to Nainital, Dudhwa National Park, regular outings to Nawab Ganj, Bithoor were a regular feature. Games, debates, converts, quizzes were very much part of every day life in Aloysius. Fr. Lawrence faced many a war and won but the war he won on his birthday 5th of August, 1991 was the most talked about. On the 31st of July, destruction of the school cycle stand, water tank and over small canteen was executed by the Cantonment Board. With the support of the staff and students armed with the undying Aloysian spirit, apologies were tendered, the mess cleared and a new rejuvenated Aloysius rose. Thanks to the determined nature and the guts and skills of Fr. Lawrence, a brave new Aloysius was born.

April 10th, 1982, Aloysius was handed over to a brilliant, hard working, music minded and innovated administrator named Fr. Richard Fernandes (May his soul rest in peace). He knew exactly how to tackle complex administrative problems. He built an excellent Principal-teacher cum student relationship. Rotary clubs made in roads to our school to install a junior club called the "Interact Club" which was highly successful owing to Fr. Richard's ever supporting hand. Excursions, picnics, inter school activities, functions were encouraged, gradually bringing fame to Aloysius which was the most talked about school during his tenure. His ability to handle disciplinary problems were so smooth and convincing that people wondered how one individual could function so well with all concerned with Aloysius. A trip to Chennai, Bangalore, Mysore and Ooty along with fourty five students and five teachers have made Fr. Richard immortal to those who went on that trip. New basketball, a brand new stage fitted with the latest music and light system are some of the things attributed to him. In 1987 St. Aloysius won the Inter school Sports at OEF Stadium grounds which contributed to the good name of the school even further. We will always remember Fr. Richard for his God given qualities of forgiveness and caring.

For a brief period Fr. John of the Cross administered Aloysius. Ever ready with a smile to greet one or a joke or anecdote to liven one's mood for the day was expected from such a benign man, a priest really in the true sense just like Fr. Saldanha who was often referred to lovingly as "The Godfather"

I had left Aloysius in May 1979 before that I had served as s teacher under the capable hands of Father Jerome D' Souza from 1977 to 1979. Fr. Jerome was a sprightly, highly energetic and a quick improviser who could handle any given situation at any given time. He had a commanding voice which dominated his personality. He was very democratic in his dealing with both the students and staff who adored him. Games, sports, curricular and extra curricular activities went hand in hand through out the year. I remember on two occasions Aloysius had two Annual Events in the same year the Annual sports and the Annual concert. Aloysius name and fame were at its zenith under Fr. Jerome's tenure.

What is a school without teachers ? Like water without a combination of Hydrogen and Oxygen ! Great teachers have left Aloysius either to foreign Lands or to the heavens above. Mr. Bruce Wilmar whose boxing, athletic and cricket skills made Aloysius a school to reckon on with. Mrs. Patsy Wright whose handling of children in the primary level paved the way to those children to build up their Knowledge of English in a highly competitive "English" world. Mr. Yaqub's jovial and unorthodox style in teaching Mathematics created many a I.I.T. aspirants, Miss Lorenz's proficiency in Geography made the world a less complex world to study., the graceful and dignified teachings of Miss. Sinha has made many students a fan of Shakespeare, the gentle and ever willing Mr. V.K. Misra made Physics less challenging to the student masses. The quick witted and clever Mr. B.N. Misra made chemistry as harmless as its chemicals.

Fate brought me to Kanpur for a good reason and for that I am thankful. Aloysius, I always believe, will be as constant as the Northern star, a star that will never change its position, a star that will never compromise !!!

Mr. Richard White

(Geography/English Teacher)
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