Thursday, 26 April 2012

Bishop Cotton Girls

Bishop Cotton Girls' School , Bangalore

On April 19 th 1865 , in a house on High Grounds ( later known as "Westward Ho") the school for Boys and Girls was opened as a foundation and connected to the Church of England for the education of the European and Eurasian Community of Bangalore and its neighbourhood., through the efforts of the Rev. J. Gordon, R.Firth and S.T. Pettigrew , Chaplains of Bangalore. It took the honoured name of Bishop Cotton of Calcutta, for it was established in connection with a sheme of education which Bishop Cotton had originated. The heraldic shield of Bishop Cotton , became the Shield of the School. The Rev. S.T. Pettigrew, who had taken a prominent part in starting the school was appointed as the first Secretary of the Board of Governers of this School.

Early stages

The early years were difficult and uncertain with frequent changes in leadership. In 1870 the present site of thirteen acres on which the Boys' school stands was acquired. It was Dr. G.U. pope who transferred the schools to the site, with the Girls' School under its own Head mistress. He served the schools with great distinction and gave us his family motto - "Nec Dextrorsum Nec sinistrorsum". After Dr. Pope's departure in 1881, the Schools faced grave financial and academic problems. In 1906 it was contemplated to close the Schools altogether.

In a last effort the then Chairman of the Board Of Governers, Bishop Whithead, invited the Rev. ( later Bishop) Pakenham-Walsh , the Rev. H. Lamp and Rev. C.R. Burnett, who along with canon Foley, formed the Brotherhood of St. Peter to save the schools. Humanly speaking we owe the very life of the Schools to these men and in particular to Bishop Pakenham-Walsh, who remained Warden for nearly six years. His tenure sybolizes a period of academic excellence and building construction. He dedicated he first Chapel in 1907; he was the first Warden to start the log Book. The School song was written by him and the music was composed by Mr. Saunders. In 1911, the Girls' School moved across the road to Stafford House. From 1865-1912, the Girl's section was under the stewardship of Mrs. Smith, Miss E.A. Gow and Miss A.M. Gow, who served as Head Mistresses. Miss F. Elmes was the first Principal of the Bishop Cotton Girls' School

Early 1900

Between 1913 and 1934, the buildings adjoining Stafford House were expanded. Miss R.M. Waller is remembered for her intellectual and administrative talents. During her tenure she served the school faithfully and set it on firm grounds. Miss M.E. Hardy ( 1945 - 1952 ) , a good sports woman and disciplinarian , came to Cottons after years of service as a missionary in Burma. The Church of South India came into existance during this period. The school uniform underwent a change from Navy Blue skirts to green tunics during Miss E. Drayton's time. Unfortunately her tragic end came after the completion of only five months of principalship. Mrs. C. M. Gaughan steered the school throught he turbulent periods

1950s - 1970s

Miss C.B. Schiff (1954 - 1957) strengthened the involvement of parents and encouraged cultural activities, especially Music and Art. The building of the Art room and the extension of the staff room were accomplished. Miss C.M. Millington had been on the staff of the School before she took over as Principal. The Raman Science Block and the Chapel of the Holy Family were constructed during this time. The examination system changed over from Cambridge Certificate to the Indian School Certificate Examination.

The first Indian Principal, Mrs. Acca Joseph took over in 1963. Her able administration helped this school to establish itself strongly as aself-sufficient unit. The centenary year was celebrated with great enthusiasm. Distinguished personolities like Mr V.V. Giri and Mrs Indira Gandhi visited the School. The School library was inaugurated and the New Boarding Block was built. Indian culture was intricately woven into the fabric of the education system. A strict disciplinarian herself, she demanded the same standards from her staff and Students. She retired in May 1972.

1970s - 1980s

Audio-visual aids were introduced and the teachers were urged to improve their approach through self-evaluation and adoptation of fresh methods of teaching. Mrs. V.M. Chandran who took over as Principal in 1973 is the person behind the construction of school auditorium. The parents' Block was inaugurated during this period. Two new houses - Elmes and Waller were introduced in addition to the existing Barton, Foley and Maiden Houses.

Pale green Tunics were changed to Dark Green.Computer studies were introduced. The strength rose from 700 to 3000. Six additional class rooms were built and shift system was introduced.

The Bishop Cotton Women's Christian College was started in 1985, the first of its kind in the Diocese.

Members Of the Board Of Management- 2008
The Chairman being the Bishop of the Karnataka Central Diocese, Rt. Rev. S. Vasanthakumar.
Vice Chairman, Mr. J. M. Richard
Secretary, Principal, Mrs. Princess Franklyn
Treasurer, Mr. J. C. Chandrahasan
Educationa Committee Convenor, Mr. John Zachariah
Area Chairman, Rev. Satish Timothy Paul
Members of the Board - Rev. Vincent Rajkumar, Rev. Job Jayaraj and Rev. Mrs. Florence Deenadayalan

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