In the second of her interview series, Laura speaks to the inspirational Swati Popat Vats.
With more than 33 years’ experience, Swati Popat Vats is the founder director of Podar Jumbo Kids preschool and daycare chain in India with more than 280 centres. She is also the nursery director of Little Wonders Nursery (UAE), which has branches in Jumeirah and Sharjah. She heads the teacher-training wing of the company and is a lead assurer for the CACHE programme. She is president of Podar Education and president of Early Childhood Association (India) and the national representative for the World Forum Foundation.
A columnist for nationally circulated newspapers and magazines, she has authored several books for children and parents. She has received many accolades and awards for her contribution to Early Childhood education and was recently presented the Fellowship of Honor from the New Zealand Tertiary College. She was the founder consultant for the Euro Kids preschool project in India and helped set up TATASKY’s children’s television activity channel, ACTVE WHIZKIDS.
In this episode, Swati describes her role as leader of a large nursery chain in India, with settings in the UAE. She recalls that the first president of Podar Education was none other than Gandhi. She reflects on Montessori and other theorists and pioneers that have informed her practice, and goes on to discuss the charity arm of Podar and how this positively impacts on children in Early Years and enriches their lifelong learning and development.
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