A school in Phangane district of Maharashtra has given new hope to elderly women. This special school ‘Aajibaichi Shala’ is for women who are above 60 and have never been to school.

These old women have been learning to read, write and do basic arithmetic over the past 11 months.

The school was started by Yogendra Bangar. The idea of starting such a school occurred to him when he was attending a religious function and officials were reading from the scriptures. During the function, Bangar overheard an elderly woman saying, “If we knew how to read, we could read the holy books ourselves at home instead of others doing it for us”.

Bangar is a teacher who runs a primary school in the same village; he started the school for the elderly women as an extension of the primary school. The main reason to start this in the same premises was to teach the young students to respect the elderly.

Every weekday, between 2PM and 4PM, the women come to attend the classes in their uniform which is a bright pink saree. The elderly students also carry a slate, chalk and textbook.

I know how to write my name and sign. All of us come here together and study: Student at school for old women in Thane’s Fagne village. 

The elderly students have also been given one tree each to look after and they are up to the task perfectly.


On International Woman’s Day, March 8, the school will celebrate its first anniversary. Bangar has plans for a Sports Day.