Sophia High School
|70 Palace Road
Karnataka 560 001
|Motto||Truth and Universal Love|
|Number of students||2,000+|
|Color(s)||Beige and brown|
|Affiliation||School Sisters of Notre Dame|
Sophia High School is a private school in Bangalore, India. The middle and high schools are girls only, while the primary school is co-educational.
In August 1948 when the Internuncio and the Apostolic Delegation shifted to New Delhi, his residence and grounds in the heart of Bangalore was taken over by a group of Catholic nuns of the Society of the Sacred Heart, RSCJ. In January 1949, three pioneers of the order, Mother Catherine Andersson, Mother Ivy Bourke and Sister Dorothy Bullen opened a school called the "Convent of the Sacred Heart" in the only residential building on the grounds, the old "white bungalow". A Montessori class with 17 students and one qualified teacher was established. About 40% of the students admitted were not Indian nationals. In 1957 the school's name was changed to "Sophia High School" after St Madeline Sophie Barat, a founder of the Society of the Sacred Heart.
In 1972, the Society of the Sacred Heart, reviewed their strategy in India, and handed off several thriving local schools, including Sophia High School, to other Catholic groups, to focus more on schools that needed funding and attention, especially in India's rural areas. Sophia High School was taken over by the School Sisters of Notre Dame.
Since then the school has grown significantly. The school's current enrollment is over 2,000 students. The school is not a religious organization and its students, who are chosen through a competitive interview process, hail from many different ethnicities. The founding "white bunglow" still stands on campus and was remodeled in 1998.
Sophia's prepares students for the 10th grade national ICSE examinations. The school also prepares students for the 12th grade national ISC examination conducted by the Council for ISC Examination, New Delhi. The medium of instruction is English. It is also one of the hardest schools to gain admission to, with lines snaking outside the gates of the school during sales of admission forms.
The ICSE (Class 10) program in the school offers a wide variety of subjects like English, Science (Physics, Chemistry and Biology), Mathematics, Economic Applications, Computer Applications, Hindi, Kannada, French, History and Civics, Geography and Environmental Studies.
The ISC (Class 12) program in the school offers three streams, namely Science, Commerce and Humanities. In the Science stream, the students have to compulsorily take English, Physics and Mathematics and can choose 2 other subjects from Psychology, Chemistry, Economics, Biology, Computer Science and Elective English. In the Commerce stream, the students have to compulsorily take English, Commerce and Accounts and can choose 2 other subjects from Psychology, Economics, Computer Science and Elective English. In the Humanities stream, the students have to compulsorily take English, Political Science and History and can choose 2 other subjects from Psychology, Economics, Computer Science and Elective English.
The majority of graduates attend colleges and universities in India and around the world, such as the IITs, NID, BITS Pilani, Delhi School of Economics, St. Stephen's College, the St Xavier's Colleges in Bombay and Calcutta, Lady Shri Ram College, the Ivy League universities and Georgia Institute of Technology, and MIT in the United States.
Sophia has held concerts over the years, to raise funds for good causes. A production of The King And I was held in Chowdiah Memorial Hall in 2002.The sets for the production was designed and executed by Rebecca Taylor an Alumni.directed by Ashley Powell They did a rendition of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, Joseph And The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, in 2006, which was held to raise funds for the construction of the Auditorium block of the school. It was held at the Bishop Cottons Boys High School Auditorium. In 2010, the school did a musical version of the Disney movie, Mulan. It was the first concert to be held in the school's own auditorium and was held to raise money for the construction of a school in rural Karanataka. A concert titled 'The Alternative Snow White', was held in August 2013 to help fund the reconstruction of the Mater building. This concert was a huge success.
2010 witnessed the change of leadership from Sr. Sandhya to Sr. Priscilla and in 2014, from Sr. Priscilla to Sr. Alpana.
The house system
Apart from academics, students are encouraged to participate in co-curricular activities. Activities and competitions within the school are conducted in Houses. These houses are named after the founder members of the school, with the Julie House being changed from the Duschene House after the Notre Dame Sisters took over from the Sacred Heart sisters.
- Andersson - Gold House
- Barat - Red House
- Bennett - Lavender/Purple House
- Julie - Green House
The students try to live up to the mottos and ideals of their respective house..
School motto and song
The school follows the motto of 'Truth And Universal Love', which they expect all their students to strive to achieve. The school song was written by one of the founder members of the school, Mother Anderson.
The song goes as follows:
'Love and Truth Fair Gifts Divine Honor, Glory, Praise be Thine Childlike hearts to God's own heart Fashion'd by thy gentle heart
Flame of truth so strong and sure Make thy children free and pure Flower of love by silent speech Gift of self unto us teach
Boundless, quenchless deathless fire Stronger than our men's desire Burn our souls with truth's own flame Peace and joy shall be thy flame
Show our mind and guide our wills Love's dear duties to fulfil To the needy, to the sad Help us bring thy message glad
God who art both love and truth Lead our footsteps, lead our youth Then within thy heart's divine Truth and love shall intertwine
Models and Actors
The Sophia Opportunity School
Sophia's Opportunity School branch educates specially abled children. This branch also undertakes social action out reach programs, such as work with a street children’s home in Chamrajpet, interaction with the women inmates of Bangalore's Central Jail, a day in rural schools in the Bangalore metro and visits to aged and orphan homes in the area.
The Sophia High School Brass Band
The Sophia High School Brass Band was initially trained under Dr. Ashley William Joseph who is the Director & Conductor of the 100-year-old Bangalore Musical Association and the Founder Director & Conductor of the Indian National Symphony Orchestra. The School Brass Band was known to be one of the Best Band Ensemble's amongst a host of schools in the Country. Their smart and chic Band Uniform with a black and white checked pleated skirt, formal white shirt and pink sash made it one of the smartest band uniforms in town!The strength of the Band was around 100-150 students right from grade 7 to grade 10 initially and then upto grade 12(once ISC 11th and 12th grade began). After multiple trials and rounds of selection from a large number of students, only a few were lucky enough to be selected and trained in the Brass Ensemble, representing the School in various inter-school competitions nationally. The Band has a variety of instruments from the trumpet, trombones, tuba, flute, drums etc. all playing in harmony to replay some beautiful tunes. The Sports Day traditionally began with a grand opening from the Brass Band Performance with the emotional National Anthem followed by some fantastic tunes for the March past. The Sports day ended with "Abide with Me" with the coming down and folding of the School Flag, always receiving a standing ovation from parents who stood in awe after the performances of the day and the beautiful ending tune.
There are five main buildings; Cuvilly(middle school), Mater(eighth standard),Duschene(high school), Julie(pre-primary), Barat(primary) and the ISC block(+2). The Cuvilly building houses an auditorium.
- Sister Mary Alpana (current),
- Sister Mary Rosilin,(Primary)
- Sister Mary Prabha,(Opportunity)
- Sister Mary Priscilla
- Sister Mary Sandhya,
- Sister Mary Aneeta, (Primary)
The school helps teach the residents of the Angel orphanage, with students of the +2 section volunteering to help teach them after the normal working school hours. The school supports organisations like HelpAge India, Global Cancer Concern India, and the Smile foundation. The school concert, a production of 'Mulan', was held to raise money to build a school in a rural area of Andhra Pradesh.