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Ignis Careers aims to empower learners from deprived communities

Bangalore: Rennis Joseph is the founder and CEO of Ignis Careers. This company deals with Educational products and services. Ignis Careers promotes Life Skills and English skills in schools, addressing a serious gap in school education in India. Indian education is mostly based on rote-learning, leaving students with meaningless certificates without ever equipping them for life or providing them with problem-solving skills. They build a sustainable capacity model that train teachers and students throughout the year

Ignis programs are affordable at less than INR. 750/- a year per child. These are sustainable as they train teachers and support both affordable private schools and government schools.

Their programs address life skills based on the models of WHO and UNICEF, two factors that the Indian education system fail at by focusing on rote learning and unthinking discipline.

  • The programs promote functional skills in English through participatory, and interactive activities.
  • The programs are culturally appropriate and personalized.
  • They are age-appropriate and focus on developmental milestones
  • English skills along with life skills, improve learning outcomes, as English is a key skill in learning other subjects.
  • They focus on meta-learning skills so that students become motivated learners. 
  • Improved English skills help students in higher education, improve their access to information and open wider employment avenues for them as they grow up.
  • The English levels are tested based on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) for Languages) ranging from A0 to A2 levels.

The aim of empowering learners from deprived communities to gain access to wider academic and career opportunities through a culturally relevant and age/level appropriate curriculum with a special focus on reading, writing, and speaking skills integrated with life skills for purposeful learning, thereby providing an opportunity to break the cycle of poverty. 

Ignis has developed an integrated age-appropriate and culturally relevant English language and life skills curriculum to empower school students belonging to under-served and deprived communities. They worked with the schools to provide year-long training for their teachers in delivering the curriculum through innovative activity-based participatory teaching methodologies. The improved content delivery by teachers translate to better student performance and improved learning

Ignis has developed a range of interventions to the enterprise’s mission to improve language and life skills among marginalized communities. These are:

  • My English Guru: This is a remote learning solution that mixes live sessions self-learning materials. The five levels of live online programs for students from classes 1-10 seeks to ensure that students from vulnerable communities are not too affected by the disruption in education.
  • English and Life Skills Lab (ELSL): The English and Life Skills Lab (ELSL) is an 8-Level curriculum covering the needs of students from class 2 to class 10. The age and level appropriate curriculum are designed to develop the language skills of the students in an interactive and joyful manner.
  • Rural Teacher Fellowship (RTF): The program is specifically designed for government schools in rural and peri-urban regions. The engagement involves the delivery of the ELSL curriculum in government schools through trained Teacher Fellows recruited from the community to ensure dedication and ownership.
  • Digital Literacy and Online Classroom Management for Teachers: An orientation program to help teachers develop effective online teaching skills and familiarisation with online teaching tools, resources, and protocols.
  • Teacher Training for Participatory Learning: The programme that covers the theoretical and practical aspects are offered for teachers as a school capacity-building initiative. It covers innovative and interactive teaching methods using storytelling, puppetry, theatre, creative movement and art. The programme is intended to inspire creative energy among the teaching community and simultaneously enhancing their English skills. 
  • Aspire – Career Counselling and Awareness Program: A two-month program for career preparedness developed for learners from classes 9 and 10 in peri-urban and rural schools.
  • Employment Enhancement Programme for Youth and Professionals: Ignis has also trained over 4000 young graduates from various colleges and universities.

Pre- and post-assessments help gauge the progress in learning. Regular feedback collected from school leaders, teachers, and parents helps in continually improving and updating the curriculum.

Acumen had conducted a lean data study in 2018 on the English and Life Skills program in Affordable Private Schools in Hyderabad. A summary of their findings is provided below.

  • DEPTH OF IMPACT: 95% of parents reported an improvement in the child’s quality of life since Ignis’ intervention in the child’s school.
  • PERSONAL GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT: At least 85% of the parents reported positive impact across different facets of personal growth and development such as inquisitiveness, confidence, peer to peer interaction
  • NET PROMOTER SCORE: Ignis’ Net Promoter Score is 54, which is excellent. Parents loved the pedagogy and study material. Most parents also reflected their contentment upon seeing the improvement in their child over a period of one year.

Ignis Rural Teacher Fellowship program was piloted in a remote village called Banapuram in the Khammam district of Telangana. This is one of the 150 odd most backward districts in India. 8 years of intervention has shown great impact;

• Enrolment doubled from 104 students (2010) to 240 students (2018)

• Gender parity in enrolment and graduation achieved from 38% in 2010

• 90% enrolment in higher education, against a national average of 24%

Ignis Rural has ranked among the top 60 social enterprises in the DBS-NUS Social Venture Challenge Asia (2016/2017). It’s also selected for the GSBI-Miller Centre In-residence Program (2019), won HDFC Smart-Up Grant (March 2020), ET NOW: Leaders of Tomorrow, South Zone Finalist (2020), and National Startup Awards Finalists (2020).

To know more about Ignis Careers’ products and services contact Rennis Joseph at [email protected].

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