Upper Elementary raises money for Chauntra

When the curtain falls on the Upper Elementary production of Dear Edwina, the students will be asking the audience to support the Sabhota Tibetan School in Chauntra, India.

Chauntra, which serves the children of Tibetan exiles living in northwest India, has been a “sister” to MMS since 2001, and every year the MMS children do community service projects to raise money to buy winter clothing for the Chauntra students.

This year, the students decided that they would like to do something more personal for Chauntra, and decided to dedicate their work on the play to this cause. They hope to raise $2000, which will buy clothing and provide technology so that the students at the two schools can communicate more directly.

On Tuesday, Feb. 7, Kai Johnson, an Upper Elementary teacher, talked about his experience living with a Tibetan family in Dharamsala, where the Tibetan government-in-exile is based, and about the school established by the Dalai Lama.

The Tibetan schools in India teach Tibetan language and culture as well as English. Many of the children who attend the school in Chauntra come from uneducated families, and the families work on subsistence farms in remote areas. The school starts in Primary, where it reflects a Montessori methodology, and goes through 10th grade. In the last decade it has expanded its boarding facilities to serve students from the Arunachal Pradesh province in the northeastern tip of India.

Dear Edwina will be performed for Upper Elementary parents on Feb. 15-16. All the children in the school will have an opportunity to see the play during the dress rehearsals on Feb. 14 and 15, and parents in Primary and Lower Elementary may attend the dress rehearsals as well. They should RSVP at the reception desk.

An exhibit displaying correspondence and photographs from the children at Chauntra is on display in the MMS lobby. Children and families may contribute for Chauntra at the reception desk through Feb. 28.