Education and Academic Excellence: Tanya Thakwani and Seema Nair Present DPS International Ghana

Tanya Thakwani and Seema Nair give an overview of DPS International Ghana and explain what makes the school unique. DPSI Ghana commenced in Tema in the year 2010, aiming for quality education and academic excellence, providing holistic, modern and comprehensive education, from creche to A level.

Tanya Thakwani, First Lady, and Seema Nair, Principal at DPS International Ghana

Interview with Tanya Thakwani, First Lady, and Seema Nair, Principal at DPS International Ghana

What are the key factors that make your school different from the rest?

Seema Nair: DPSI was established in 2010 in Tema. It stands for academic excellence, wholistic development of the students, a dedicated team and preparing students on a global platform. These are the key areas. Our motto is Service Beyond Self. Our director, Mukesh Thakwani, started the school with a dream of contributing to society. He has groomed the entire team to be united and build this school to greater heights. This school is like an extended family. Our philosophy is working for academic excellence and overall development of the students. We have a number of projects and activities that help the children go beyond the classroom, through interschool, interclass and exchange programs, because we believe every child has potential. There is also an open-door policy at our school where parents are free to come to us and express any concerns that they may have so we can address them immediately, and that is what makes our school very different from others. We follow the Cambridge Assessment International Education curriculum which is broad and balanced. And being an IGCSE and A-Level curriculum school, we enable students to get to the universities of their choices later on in college life. We have a special counsellor who gives students guidance on what courses to choose, and which university would be best suited for each student. We have the DPSI Care Foundation which was started by the students so they can donate to causes like orphanages, or cancer research. Students are encouraged to use the power of the pen to write in newsletters, magazines and yearbooks and they learn that the pen is mightier than the sword early in life. Nothing is done simply; everything is done very grandly because we believe that even small things must be done to a scale of perfection. Every day there is an excitement to do and learn something new and it can be seen all around the campus. We want our students to be in a position to face the challenges of society.

What was the original idea for creating the school and what is behind the DPSI Care Foundation?

DPSI was established in 2010 in Tema. It stands for academic excellence, wholistic development of the students, a dedicated team and preparing students on a global platform.

Tanya Thakwani: My husband and I came to Ghana 22 years ago and I wanted to become a teacher. I got certified and my husband told me he would open a school and 10 years later he did. He believes that education is the best thing to give back to society, so that is why he started DPSI. I am really happy when I see how the children are growing. The DPSI Care Foundation was started by my son, Vishal Thakwani, in 2017 when he saw that there were people who were suffering.

What are the most important awards that the school has won?

Seema Nair: We have been the winners of the Spelling Bee Award in Ghana for four years in a row. We have won the British Consul Best School Award for Academic Excellence in the A-Level and O-Level for three consecutive years. Unfortunately, last year the award ceremony didn’t take place, otherwise we would have been the ones to win all the awards. We have also won external competitions like the International Olympiads in maths, where a child got a good scholarship, in science, etc. We take place in a number of competitions such as the Science Olympiads, the English Olympiads, the Maths Olympiads, etc. We encourage our children to participate and they have won a number of awards. At an international level, we rank among the top 10% of the schools in these competitions.

What is the process for selecting teachers at DPS International Ghana?

Seema Nair: Selecting teachers is a very important process because we believe that teachers make the school. They are the ones who actually interact with the children, so we conduct thorough interview screenings with applicants and if we find that they are a confident communicator they move on to a classroom demonstration, which is followed by a question-and-answer session. Afterwards, there is an induction program for the new teachers where they get acquainted with the school philosophy, rules and regulations. That is a 10-day process that is conducted at the beginning of the academic year.

Regarding your international partnerships, which one has helped DPSI the most to get where it is?

Seema Nair: It would be the Model United Nations (MUN) program which enables students to interact with other students around the world to get insights about different countries such as the economic, political, and social aspects of life. It is one of the best programs for giving students a platform to exchange their thoughts and ideas confidently with other people across the world.

Tanya Thakwani: We recently were in this year’s Toyota Art competition in which many of our children were awarded. It is a good competition for the students because it teaches them the patience needed in doing art. And three years ago, one of our students won a bronze medal at the international level.

What is the rate at which your students are awarded scholarships?

Tanya Thakwani: This year about 15% of students got scholarships.

Can you explain your 4Cs skills for students – Creation, Collaboration, Critical and Communication.

Seema Nair: It starts with the morning assembly. There is a morning prayer, addresses on thought-provoking ideas based on a weekly theme given to the students in advance. And when it comes to our classrooms, they are not just places to give lectures, there is a lot of hands-on training. Students actually learn by doing, which is our philosophy. Experiments and activities that they participate in can involve giving PowerPoint presentations, giving talks, or presenting group activities. It is not a conventional type of classroom that we have. There are multiple intelligences in a classroom so we identify them and create activities subjectwise so that the students will take an interest in them. That is when they learn to collaborate as a group. When they discuss with each other different aspects, they are learning communicative skills. In learning problem solving skills, they are encouraged to be curious and ask questions which leads to critical thinking. When teachers put together a lesson plan, they are supposed to plan activities around these four Cs.

What projects are you working on?

Tanya Thakwani: We are working on a science exhibition and tech talks for 2022.

Seema Nair: Students will be split into teams of ten for the tech talks and they will collaborate with each other and give presentations.

What do you want to achieve in the medium-term, say the next two to three years?

Tanya Thakwani: In the next three years, depending on the number of admissions, I would like to expand our primary school building.

Seema Nair: As the new principal, for the next three years, I want to see a high enrollment of students. I would like to have more global exchange programs taking place in our school. I want to see the team expanding so that we have the best minds at DPSI and establish ourselves as the best International Baccalaureate (IB) school, not only in West Africa, but on the African continent.

What is your inspiration, what drives you?

Seema Nair: My philosophy in life is work to your best and strive for excellence.

Tanya Thakwani: For me, when you work hard you will be successful.


  • ADDRESS: DPS International Ghana, Community 25, Tema, Ghana
  • CONTACT: (+233) 55 662 0540 / (+233) 54 435 3199 / (+233) 54 434 9579
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