The Mama Parsi Girls' Secondary School

Miss J Kelly

Miss J Kelly was appointed as the first official Principal in December 1918, but remained in this post for less than a year.

Miss Mary G Boardman – 1919-1932

Miss Boardman, a highly qualified and experienced teacher, took charge as virtually the first Principal of the school, for it was her moving spirit that maintained and raised the tone of the school. Praises and laurels were showered on this Irish Principal who had nursed the new-born Mama School within a decade and placed it as one of the best schools in the Sub-continent. Her old students even now revere the memory of Miss Boardman with love and a profound sense of gratitude.

Mr Cowashah Edulji Anklesaria – 1899-1942

Mr Cowashah was appointed as Administrator and Principal of the B V S Parsi High School in 1899. When The Mama School was established in 1918, Mr Cowashah assumed the responsibilities as its Principal till Miss J Kelly came on the scene.

This old stalwart of the Parsi Community served the new school for fifteen years altogether serving the cause of Parsi education for forty years, alternately being Vice Principal and Principal of The Mama School. This change though hurtful, explains the nobility and sublime nature of Mr Cowashah to work first and second in command alternately as and when the School required. This noble soul did his duty loyally and with utmost dedication. On retirement of Miss Boardman in 1932, Mr C E Anklesaria became the Principal. Mr Cowashah was a kind, gentle, simple and silent servant of humanity. He was a deep student of the Zoroastrian Religion. Unfortunately, in his lifetime, we never realised the achievements of this Parsi Head-Master. He slaved and toiled for four decades, teaching and raising funds for the School. In him were enshrined some of the finest virtues of a great ‘guru’.

Miss Iris Henrietta Thompson – 1923-1969

On the retirement of Mr Cowashah in 1941, Miss I Thompson was appointed as Principal and Miss Goola B Shroff who had joined the school as a teacher in 1927 was appointed as the Vice-Principal.

Education of Parsi girls made great advances through the services of Miss Thompson. She was an excellent teacher with an understanding touch. She sought to gear the programmes of girls’ education to the changing needs of the time. Perhaps more than anyone else, the Parsi women and girls of Karachi owe a great debt to the idealism and the toil that Miss I Thompson put into her tireless work. She dedicated most loyally her whole life to the service of The Mama School; in fact it would not be remiss to state that our dear ‘Miss Thompson was The Mama School'; and that the good reputation that the School enjoys today is largely due to her.

Miss Goola Bapuji Shroff – 1927-1974

In 1969 Miss Thompson retired and Miss G B Shroff was appointed Principal. Miss M S Contractor who had joined the school in 1936 became the Vice-Principal.

Miss Shroff, a born teacher, by dint of hard work, sincerity and loyalty rose to the highest position in The Mama School. Her whole life was spent as a class-room teacher. It was in her time that the school children took greater interest in science and mathematics. Most of the old Mamaians talk very fondly and with gratitude of her insistence for methodical and perfect work. She was a great disciplinarian but never unduly strict.

Miss Mani Sheriar Contractor – 1936-1991

Miss Contractor served the school from 1969 as Vice-Principal and from 1974 as the Principal. She came to the school in 1936 after taking her B A Examination, as a very young lady-teacher. She was a very able teacher and attended to her duties regularly, loyally and diligently. She completed fifty glorious years of dedicated services to the school – a record to envy! She is still loved by her colleagues and students, who wish her well always.

Miss Zarine Tehmurasp Mavalvala – 1963-1983 1991-2010

A product of The Mama School, Miss Mavalvala has been associated with this great Institution since she was knee-high. As a pupil, she was the House and School Prefects, and joined the School as a teacher of English in its Primary Section in 1963. Gaining much experience as a Class Teacher, House Teacher and helping out on a personal level in the Accounts and Administration Departments under the able guidance of her friend and mentor, Miss Roda B Boatwalla, over the years, Miss Mavalvala, in 1977, assumed the duties of Vice-Principal, which post was confirmed in 1978. On account of differences of opinion existing at that time, she voluntarily resigned from the services of the School in 1983; and rejoined her Alma Mater as Principal in July 1991. A rather strict disciplinarian, with a keen understanding of human nature, she has often been accused of despotic tendencies, but knows the value of silent leadership even at the cost of being unpopular in the process, what with the difficulties of human values and standards falling so sharply in today’s times! She however remains confident that, with her Beloved Lord Avatar Meher Baba ever guiding her every step, The Mama School’s standard will keep flying high.

Mr. Rustom Virji Divecha – 1981-1986

Though not declared the official Principal of the School, The Mama Parsi Girls’ School certainly owes a deep debt of gratitude to Mr. Divecha, as he was fondly called by many of us. One of the greatest educationists of our times, Mr Divecha rose from humble beginnings to respectable heights of greatness. On his retirement as Chairman, Board of Secondary Education, Karachi Region, The Mama School had the good fortune to have him join us as our Administrator and Head of the Afternoon Shift. He was highly instrumental in bringing about a lot of economic improvements at the School. Mr Divecha breathed his last while in service – a man born for education, dying in the service of education!