Prajodh Rajan: Inculcating the Joy of Learning to Nurture Young Minds

Prajodh Rajan
Prajodh Rajan

A joyful early years and balanced school education are the prominent pillars that strengthens the foundation of life. It is the precondition that ensures that the course of life is driven to prosperity, success, and beyond. And having the right means to access this important aspect to substantiate, requires reliance on education providers who take this factor just as seriously and with utmost precedence.

Instituting its key principles on a similar basis is Lighthouse Learning. It strongly emphasizes early childhood education and beyond, offering a holistic environment for young minds, that nurtures and assists in developing life skills.

Leading the organization to an eminent position, Prajodh Rajan, Co-founder & Group CEO of Lighthouse Learning is guiding the strategic direction and growth. Under his leadership, the company grew from 2 Pre-Schools in 2001 to 1300 Pre-Schools across 360 towns & cities in India, Nepal & Bangladesh, and a fast-growing network of 45 + K-12 Schools in India – EuroKids, Kangaroo Kids, EuroSchool, Billabong High International School and Centre Points Schools.

Let’s slide into Prajodh’s journey and learn more about the leadership that led Lighthouse Learning to success.

On course to delivering excellence

In 1999, the journey of Lighthouse Learning (formerly called EuroKids International) began as a children’s book publishing company. During those years, Prajodh discovered that there was a dearth of high-quality preschool options for parents to choose from. He believed that the lack of focus on early childhood education led to a wide gap in the non-availability of a strong foundation for young minds.

Keeping this in mind, Prajodh embarked on building the very first preschool from the ground up to offer every child that enrolled, a second home. During its development phase, Prajodh was greatly influenced by the idea of inculcating the Joy of learning in young children so that they may grow to become lifelong learners.

Today, Lighthouse Learning strives to progress on its intended growth journey by inculcating and lauding its team members’ Can-Do spirit, through which it will further the cause of education with agility and technology. With a keen sense of purpose to offer every child a holistic learning approach, Lighthouse Learning focuses on child-centricity to change the course of education.

The Lighthouse Learning Group is powered by a professional team with years of experience across all functions, and each member is geared to empower children, communities, and stakeholders at scale. It strives to collaborate with parents and teachers, and staff to provide all-around excellence for children. The outcome-driven philosophy and child centricity ideology at the core, fuels the organization as it serves as a guiding light in setting the highest benchmarks for education in Pre-School and the K-12 segment.

Every day, Lighthouse Learning impacts the lives of over 150,000 students across its campuses. Prajodh says, “It brings me great joy to see these young minds enter the real world and use their education and knowledge to make a difference year after year. This, in my opinion, is one of the most significant contributions we are making to future generations and our country.”

Lighthouse Learning also takes significant pride in having positively impacted the lives of over 1,000 women entrepreneurs by empowering them to run their pre-schools and offering respectable employment opportunities to women staff members across these pre-schools.

In addition, it partners with various organizations to offer quality education across different segments of society – like the Happy School Project or the Adarsh Anganwadi Project – wherein it has partnered with the Maharashtra Government’s Women and Child Development (WCD) Department.

Creating Impact:

Lighthouse Learning began as Prajodh’s brainchild 22 years ago and has grown leaps and bounds with the help of inspiring colleagues who all believe in one objective – “Lighthouse Learning is here to ignite the Love for Learning in young children.”

Another core focus at Lighthouse Learning is the desire to help creative entrepreneurs, especially empowering first-generation entrepreneurs. “Today, we are blessed to have walked this path with over 1,000 women entrepreneurs in championing the thought of self-reliance and waving the flag of success as first-generation entrepreneurs. This determination and desire has helped us create an organization that thrives on building entrepreneurship opportunities in the education field,” mentions Prajodh.

Prajodh states – today, as skill sets evolve faster than one ever imagined, it’s imperative that students gain knowledge beyond just school-prescribed books. He highlights that schools and colleges should use teaching styles and tools where students feel comfortable being curious and asking questions, therefore enabling them to evolve their learning and thinking. Skills that are essential to be taught and primed to students are cognitive skills – such as critical thinking and problem-solving; socio-emotional skills – such as self-esteem, adaptability, creativity, perseverance, and empathy; Digital skills – such as computational thinking, for children to be able to adapt to the changing times.

He says, “A key component of addressing the needs of the youth is to have the right educators on board who are constantly being guided & upskilled to cope with the emerging trends in education and the psyche of the new age children and youth”

He continues, “Our scale – the network of preschools and schools also helps us to learn from the versatile skillset of teachers and school leaders to make the delivery of learning at our campuses more effective and improve learning outcomes for our student’s year on year.”

Provisioning Unparalleled Resources

Today, in spite of the advent of many pre-school brands, Lighthouse Learning leads the way in being focused on spotlighting the advantages of a quality, future-ready curriculum that can help children imbibe language, science, math, and social skills for life from the tender age of 3 years.

Prajodh is also cautiously optimistic about technology. According to Prajodh, technology today is all pervasive – entwined in nearly every part of our surroundings. Technology affects how one live, work, play, and, most importantly, learn. Therefore, it has become very logical for schools also to deploy technology in the classrooms to help students learn effectively. New technologies such as AI, machine learning, and educational software aren’t just changing the field for students; they’re shaking up the role of educators, creating philosophical shifts in approaches to teaching, and remodeling classrooms.

Speaking on the subject, Prajodh states, “I believe that the real story for the future of education will center around how educators’ structure and run their classrooms, as well as how technology will be used to help students imbibe and retain concepts. The objective educators have is to use technology as an enabler to make learning more engaging and fun for our students. When paired with interpersonal relationships, thoughtful educators, and deliberate programs, technology can be an incredible asset.”

Technology has ensured a paradigm change in the way education is delivered in this country. Technology has also made it convenient to share the curriculum, revisit the same at convenience, hold easier procedures towards examinations and most important – personalizing learning. Under a supervised platform, technology is effective and a great enabler of education. With an influx of new learning models available, traditional educational methods are bound to evolve in the next decade.

“The need to maintain a fine balance while using technology both at home as well as at school is key. When used in the optimal manner, technology can change the way children learn, and this, in the long term, will bring the desired change that policymakers are hoping to achieve – driving 100% literary with engaged learners.”

Also, Prajodh emphasizes that outcome-based education is going to equip the future workforce with higher adaptability to new challenges – including the threat of technology taking away jobs. It is, therefore, the collective duty of everyone to leverage technology now to shape young minds so that they can overcome the challenges that the future may hold for them.

Testament to Triumph

For Prajodh it has been very humbling to have been awarded numerous awards and accolades over the years, including ‘The Global Change Maker Award in Education’ instituted by Franklin Covey Education, ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’, Top ‘50 Leaders Changing Indian Education’ and “50 Visionaries – leading icons in Education” as one of the top education influencers in the country.

All these awards bear testament to the hard work Prajodh and his trusted team across Lighthouse Learning put in to ensure children are provided with the Love for Learning.

Prajodh would advise all mission-driven edupreneurs to always focus on bringing about a positive impact in the education sector as his own which is ‘To ignite the Love for Learning in 1 Million Children.’

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