Official Website of CSI Parish Kattakada, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

Official Website of CSI Parish Kattakada, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala
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India had no systematic system of learning. The traditional syllabus consisted of the alphabet, basic mathematics, poems and grammer. Sometimes, occult sciences such as astrology were also taught. There was no uniformity in syllabus. Text books were unknown. Teachers were not experts in their subjects and they were not trained for their profession. The scheme of study was mostly based on learning by heart. Furthermore, education was not universal; it was restricted only to pupils born of high castes. The lower caste people had no entry to the traditional schools.
The modern system of education was introduced in India by the missionaries. The ever widening horizon of knowledge, as included in the curriculum in European countries, was introduced to the students in India. There emerged a common syllabus and set of textbooks for the students all over India, for the first time. Training for teachers, hitherto unheard anywhere in India, became an invariable feature of education. The lower caste people were admitted to schools, where they sat beside their upper caste counterparts. There emerged modern colleges and universities all over India. Education-and not family background-became the criterion for a job in government. English education was introduced in India. This language became the vehicle for formulation of political opinion and national movement in India.
Needless to say, the premier educational institutions in any city or town in India, whether they are schools, colleges or professional/technical colleges, were established by the Christian missionaries. The foremost reason for Kerala’s educational advancement is the contributions by the missionaries. The first college in Kerala – the CMS College, Kottayam- was established in 1818 by the Christian missionaries.
When Swathi Thirunal became the Maharaja of Travancore, he thought it not proper for the royal family members to keep away from the modern education, while the common people in different parts of the country enjoy the same. So”, he wanted to establish an “English school” in Trivandrum, where the princes and princesses of Travancore could acquire modern education. For this purpose, he approached the Christian missionaries. They were given facilities in Trivandrum, and thus, the Maharaja’s School was founded. Later, it became the Maharaja’s College and the University College. It may be interesting to note that the architecture of University College, Trivandrum resembles the University College, Oxford.
The contributions of missionaries to women’s education should also be stressed. Many shcools were started by them all over India. This encouraged many people to send their girl children to schools. The missionaries taught the people that educating a girl child is educating a family. Accepting this teaching even princesses from across the country attanded schools and colleges. It brought about a social change in terms of the outlook towards women and their rights. The identity of women as human beings began to be accepted by the society.