Shalini Sharma – Founder & CEO, Hi KALPAA Pre School
This Bangalore based preschool is into experiential learning that revolves around the concept of creation through experiment and experience. At Kalpaa (https://kalpaa.org), children are given the freedom to explore, experiment and experience the whole learning process. Kalpaa believes in creating child centric environment to help them stimulate and nurture their individual potential, interest and needs. It is built on six strong foundation stones, which give every child the joy of learning and experiencing. With a vision of ensuring holistic development for all types of learners into an all-around personality with sound values and superlative qualities, Kalpaa Preschools are fast developing into the most sought-after education establishment.
Shalini Sharma, the Founder and CEO of this preschool, started this venture in 2012 and plans to add four new centres for the academic year 2023-24. She is a passionate edupreneur with a technical background of BE and MTech as her educational qualifications. With an overall experience of around 15+ years, she always had a strong desire to contribute to the learning of future generations. She started her entrepreneurial journey with their experiential learning brand, FUNLAB. According to her,
“We designed STEM based curricula and trained thousands of school children on Robotics and Aero Modeling. I have also been running multiple branches of Preschool for last 7+ years. Recently, I along with Kalpaa core team, we developed a unique story-based curriculum with STEAM and experience-based learning for the early learners.”
She has been a serial entrepreneur and successfully running multiple businesses, mainly into Education and Telecom. Through all of her ventures, she takes pride in creating multiple jobs that directly benefit the society. Most importantly, she is encouraging innovation and technology through various training and education methodologies that are latest and upto the global standards.
She along with her core team members developed a unique award-winning curriculum after extensive research and analysis which is mainly focused on stories and experiment-based. She aspires to make Hi Kalpaa a preferred pre-school brand PAN India, with presence in all major cities. Shalini believes hands-on, experience-based learning is the best way to educate early learners. She wants to tap into the big Indian market, which has a size of around 100 million (10 Cr) students only within the age group of 2-6 years. She is optimistic about this sector and has a target of opening 1000+ branches within next 5 years with overall enrollment of 1 lakh plus students.
India’s first woman IPS officer Dr Kiran Bedi has been an absolute inspiration to Shalini. Her dominance in the field of police administration and public services, which are largely managed by men, provides Shalini an excessive level of encouragement. She symbolises women empowerment, independence, and self-reliance.
Awarded as “India’s First Experiential Learning Pre-school” by Global Triumph organization, “Pre School with best infrastructure in Bangalore” by MySkool & have been adjudged as “Women Edupreneur 2020” by Blind Wink; things aren’t easy for Shalini at those initial days. She had to face several problems related to statutory permission and its complicated process, and then problems in raising initial capital, quality control under the franchisee business model also were some of the initial hiccups. Personally, it was very difficult to maintain work life balance but somehow, she has managed it all till date.
To all young entrepreneurs, she says that success is not any cakewalk. Hard work, honesty, and integrity are the best qualities to get success in life. Self-confidence, passion for the profession and constant innovation are the key elements for any entrepreneurial journey. One shouldn’t get affected with negativity around, be focused and calm, and will definitely get, what is aspired for.