Education: Rangjung Higher Secondary School (RHSS) last week held a picnic to celebrate its certification as a three star school.

The Ministry of Education (MoE) has certified the school for maintaining its position among the top ten performing schools in Class X for the past three consecutive years.

The school ranked ninth in 2012 followed by a second position in 2013. Last year, the school was ranked sixth with a Class X qualifying percentage of 60.66.

Although the rankings may have fluctuated, principal Tashi Namgyal said their qualifying percentage has been gradually improving. Last year, 99 Class X students qualified for higher education.

“Our qualifying percentage in 2012 was 47.9 which increased to 60.4 in 2013. Last year, we performed slightly better,” he said. “This goes to show that the number of students qualifying from Class X has been constantly increasing and the school is making progress.”

Dzongkhag Education Officer (DEO) Phuntsho said the ratings of top ten schools are based on the academic performance and physical ambience. The office monitors schools twice every year and submits the reports to MoE.

The Bhutan Council for School Examinations and Assessment (BCSEA) rates the academic aspect while the Education Monitoring and Support Services Division (EMSSD) looks at indicators that include an enabling environment and enabling practices. Factors like leadership, management and the Gross National Happiness and greenery aspects are some important elements of the rating indicators.

“Though top ten rankings were prevalent, the three star certification is the first in our education system. We take up the certification for Classes III, VI, X and XII,” he said.

Principal Tashi Namgyal said the school also teaches students the importance of volunteerism and community vitality. They identify destitute students from different schools and help them through donations collected from communities.

“We also have the practice of lending helping hands to the religious organisations,” he said. “Such activities are pertinent aspects of the performance management system.”

He added that His Majesty The King, during his visit to the school, had presented a soelra of Nu 64,500 for the school’s outstanding performance and commanded that it be used for a school picnic.

Meanwhile, beginning this year, the dzongkhag education office has also come up with a system of providing cash prize of Nu 15,000 for three star schools and Nu 10,000 for those schools ranked in the top ten list.

“This is one of the many avenues through which we are trying to motivate students and improve their performances,” the DEO said.

Besides RHSS, Dungtse Middle Secondary School in Phongmey was also certified as a three star based on its class X results while Jigme Sherabling Higher Secondary school in Khaling was also certified as a three star on the basis of class XII results.

Tshering Wangdi, Trashigang