Midnapore Collegiate School
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Midnapore Collegiate School, established on 14 November 1834, is one of the oldest schools in Bengal as well as India. The students and teachers of this school made contributions to Indian Freedom Movement during the British Rule. Khudiram Bose, a martyr in the freedom struggle was one of the students of the school. Some other alumni of the institution are Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay and Manik Bandopadhyay. Brahmo Samaj leader Wrishi Rajnarayan Basu as head masters had also contributed in building up the institution. It was formerly the Zilla School of Midnapore (currently Paschim Medinipur) in West Bengal. The school campus has a basketball court and science labs. and bright students. Students enter for the Madhyamik and the Higher Secondary examinations and competitive exams like JEE, NCERT, andOlympiad. The school has 47 teachers and 1400 students.
The school was established by people of Midnapore. With the economic help of Tezchandra Mehtab Raybahadur, the school had started its journey with a few thatched huts and 18 students. The first headmaster was Rasiklal Sen and after just two years, the school got the honor of Governmental Zilla School in 1836. When Calcutta University was established in 1857, the school came under its supervision.
During the time of British Headmasters Sir F. Tydd and Mr. Sinclare, their thought about teaching was,"the interrogative system of teaching should be carefully pursued during every step of the scholar's progress as the simplest and most effectual means of conveying knowledge." 'Sahityasamrat' of Bengal, Rishi Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay and his elder brother studied here.
Rajnarayan Bose, the socio-religious reformer and educationist took over the post of headmaster in 1851, and after 15 years retired in 1866. Another son of Medinipur, Sri Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar who was then the Principal of Sanskrit college, Kolkata, received the order of Council of Education that Rajnarayan Bose, Professor of English Department, would be appointed as the fourth Headmaster of Midnapore School. Rajnarayan Bose was already a stalwart figure in the field of Brahmo Samaj movement and have been a Young Bengal leader. He took over the post of headmaster on 21 January 1851. He was a revolutionary educationist of that time as he had ushered in a complete redress in the education system, i.e.,
- He abolished corporal punishment and introduced a friendly and cooperative atmosphere among the teachers and students to make education more interesting to them.
- He hated the procedure of "committing to memory and vomiting to paper". He followed the rule of teaching through interaction of both students and teachers. His eloquent speeches with humorous jokes attracted all students in the class. He put stress on interrogative teaching, so that the fundamentals of the student becomes strong.
- He understood that the students also need physical exercise and sports so he made a lawn tennis court and a gymnasium in the school premises.
- He observed that students sitting on benches without back-support cannot keep their backs straight, so their attention span becomes shorter while studying. So he introduced seats with back-supports for the first time.
- Being an active leader of Young Bengal, he was moved by the 'Academic Association' of Henry Louis Vivian Derozio so he introduced Debate Associations and Mutual Improvement Association in school level.
Due to his ideas the school was part of nationalist movements, widow-marriage, female education, Brahmo Samaj movements and many more socio-political activities. He was probably the first headmaster of any governmental school who had dared to inspire his students to join the freedom movement, and even had hoisted the national flag on the school premises. He adorned the chair of Headmaster till 1866.
The age of Nationalism
The school in Midnapore was noted for nurturing the nationalist movement. Teachers like Hemchandra Kanungo,Gnanendranath Basu, Pyarilal Ghosh, were noted for their nationalist teachings. Khudiram Bose, probably the youngest martyr hanged, was an alumnus of the school. His 'guru' in this field was Satyendranath Basu, an alumnus as well as a teacher of this school. He smilingly took the hangman's noose on 11 August 1908. A statue of him can be seen in the school's garden now.
Khudiram's political master, Satyendranath Basu was hanged in the same year on 23 November. Another alumnus, Anathbandhu Panja went to the gallows in 1933. Tyrant District Magistrate James Peddie was shot dead on 7 April 1931, inside the school by two freedom fighters, Shri Bimal Dashgupta and Jatijiban Ghosh. One can still find this room in this school which had been reconstructed and inaugurated by the main suspect in the political-murder case, Bimal Dashgupta himself.
During those fiery days, the school had a student named Prabodh Kumar Bandopadhyay who secured first division with letter marks in compulsory and optional mathematics in 1926. But the world of Bengali Literature knows him in a different name, Manik Bandopadhyay.
Succession List of Headmasters
|F. Tydd||Jan. 1836||Jul. 1847|
|Mr. Sinclair||Aug. 1847||Nov. 1850|
|Rajnarayan Basu||21.01.1851||06.03.1866 (on leave until 31.12.1868)|
|Shyama Charan Das||May 1884||Jun. 1892|
|Hari Charan Roy||24.06.1892||20.04.1897|
|Abhay Charan Basu||Jun. 1897||Apr. 1898|
|Upendra Nath Chandra||16.04.1898||08.02.1927|
|Narayan Kumar Mukherjee (OFFG)||01.11.1932||31.03.1933|
|Satish Ranjan Banerjee||01.07.1947||15.03.1951|
|Gostha Behari Pal (OFFG)||01.02.1963||30.07.1964|
|Bimala Prasanna Majumdar||31.07.1964||31.10.1966|
|Anuttam Bhattacharya (A.H.M & T.I.C)||12.09.1992||30.09.1998|
|Ajoy Kumar Roy (T.I.C)||01.10.1998||30.04.1999|
|Shyamapada Das (A.H.M & T.I.C)||01.05.1999||04.01.2000|
|Suchand Kumar Pan||05.01.2000||31.07.2004|
|Arun Kumar Bag (T.I.C)||01.08.2004||15.09.2005|
|Dr. Dilip Kumar Das[c]||16.09.2005||16.09.2015|
- Manik Bandopadhyay - renowned Bengali novelist
- Khudiram Bose - first martyr of indian freedom movement.
- Sir Abdur Rahim - Muslim League politician and Justice.
- Dr.Hassan Suhrawardy - first Muslim Vice Chancellor of Calcutta University.
- Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay - author of Vande Mataram
- The first Principal of Midnapore College
- Indian District Magistrate ICS Mr. Binoy Ranjan Sen was the president of Midnapore Collegiate School From 27.04.1937 to 21.03.1940
- Awarded the 'Rashtrapati Puraskar
- "The School with the March of Time". www.midnapore in.
- "Midnapore Collegiate school". www.schoolspedia.com.
- Smoronika (2008). Souvenir published on the occasion of 175th Anniversary. Mithu Enterprise.
- 'Rajnarayan Smriti' by Sri Haripada Mandal.
- TNN (7 May 2013). "President Pranab Mukherjee praises the revivalist in Mamata". The Times of India. Retrieved 1 February 2017.