Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar presents trophies and certificates at ceremony
TWENTY-three of the brightest minds in the UK – eighteen of which were from Scotland – were honoured in a ceremony in Glasgow recently to celebrate their completion of a leading abacus training programme.
The War Memorial Hall in Bishopbriggs, packed with family and friends of the winners, rung with heartfelt applause when Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar MSP presented each of the children with their awards.
The celebration was organised by computer scientist and educator, Dr Rashmi Mantri, head of The British Youth International College (BYITC), who set up the organisation in 2015 after teaching her own son, Druhv, maths using a counting tool that has been used for millennia – the abacus. Now BYITC and its Supermaths programme is the leading abacus training provider in the UK and has also developed the world’s first games-based abacus maths application.
“Clearing all levels of Abacus is no walk in the park as it requires a lot of hard work and typically takes students 3 – 4 years of practice to complete this. It really is like a mini PhD for these incredible young people,” said Dr Mantri.
“As well as enabling people to do mental arithmetic in super fast time, the abacus is a highly effective brain development tool for concentration. The touch and feel nature of it makes it very popular for children with dyslexia also for example.
“With Maths Week Scotland upon us, we want parents and teachers to know that the abacus is a tried and tested tool to improve mental maths. Our annual maths competition called an Olympiad, opened on 25th September – it is very popular as it is open to anyone to enter and is free of charge.”
Of the 23 winners at the graduation ceremony, 18 were from Scotland and the remainder from across England and Wales (all listed below).
- Mishika Pandey, 10, who attends East Craigs Primary School
- Shariva Lasure, 12, who attends Craigmount High School
- Aaliyah Deepak Krishnaveni, 11, who attends Tynecastle High School
- Gauri Shrikande, 12, who attends Craigmount High School
- Aarush Gosain, 12, who attends Rosehill High School, Wallyford
- Taran Vighnesh, 9, who attends Kirkliston Primary School
- Shreya Navratna, 15, who attends Tynecastle High School
- Rishon Ashley, 14, who attends Tynecastle High School
- Santiago Prieto, 12, who attends St Augustine’s RC High School
- Tanush Venkat, 11, Cramond Primary School
- Atharva Sawant, 13, who attends Glasgow Academy
- Tarun Vusikala 13, who attends Hutchesons Grammar School
- Victoria Guseva 10, who attends Shawlands Primary School
- Ojas Maniyar, 9, who attends St Patrick’s Primary School
- Deshna Saravanan, 11, who attends Mearns Castle High School
- Aanya Pasupuleti, 10, who attends Glasgow Academy
- Advik Mittal, 9, who attends St Patrick’s Primary School
- Janice Dsouza, 11, who attends Bishopbriggs Academy
- + Aarush Naik, 10, who attends Kinnaird Primary School in Falkirk
England & Wales winners:
- Varshini Senthilvelan, 11, Hersham
- Vishruth, 8, Basingstoke
- Shreeka Lingala, 11, Cardiff
- Hiransh, 11, Peterborough
“As parents of the millennials, we stand before a crowd of highly intelligent and capable future leaders – today’s kids. Abacus classes run by BYITC are really effective and have made it worth these the kids’ time in preparing, attending and undertaking homework assignments provided by able teachers and coordinators.
“We are humbled by the extent and quality of their input and happy to be part of this fitting recognitions.” Said the parents of Rishon, 14, from Edinburgh.
“He loves maths as he finds it fun, interesting and enjoyable. He found the Abacus very helpful to solve calculations quicker. He always asks questions and seeks answers. He has a never ending curiosity.” Said the parents of Tarun, 13, from Glasgow.
Leader of the Scottish Labour Party and Member of the Scottish Parliament, Anas Sarwar, said: “It is a great privilege to meet, and present completion certificates, to all of these high-achieving young people.
“Highlighting the outstanding achievements of young people across the United Kingdom is vital for their own development and the future of our nation, and I congratulate each and every one of them on their awards.
“I would like to congratulate the work of Dr Rashmi Mantri and the BYITC team in continuing to develop and teach the next generation of STEM superstars.”
To find out more about the awards and how to sign up for the free maths competition, visit the BYITC website.