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The Privileges of the Fifth Floor

Over the last five years, have you ever found yourself wondering what exactly it is that the older girls and boys in the blue uniform do all day? I – most definitely – have.

I used to find it so hard to believe that the ISC Section is an active part of Bombay Scottish because, most of the time, I had no idea what was going on up there. Right from the multiple new subjects, to the senior library and the different teachers – the ISC Section has always been a mystery to me, and possibly to a few others as well. Why is that?

Now that I’m in the 11th grade myself, I understand. ISC has always been a mystery because it has always been so unorthodox and self-sufficient.

I’ve found that there has been a drastic change in my environment since I’ve joined the ISC. For instance, I don’t have to walk to the other side of the school to borrow a book anymore. The senior library is really God’s gift to the fifth floor. It’s a life saver!

Another big change is the uniform. Now, when I say ‘uniform’, I don’t mean just the clothes. I mean the change in behaviour that they have caused. For example, just last week, a little child bumped into me while running and then apologised for it while addressing me as ‘Didi‘! It wasn’t that big of a deal, but it got to me because I had never experienced that in the last twelve years I had spent in Scottish.

What’s even more surprising is that it doesn’t end there. The teachers, too, treat us differently. I don’t know if I’m the only one who noticed that classes now have been more informal than ever. Teachers do not hesitate to leave the class unattended sometimes; they talk openly about sensitive matters; class discussions are more active… There are so many small but significant changes in our lives.

The biggest change has been that, now, we’re expected to behave in a certain manner. We are expected to be mature. In my opinion – being treated like an adult, with responsibilities, targets and ethics is what makes ISC so spectacular.

I was pleasantly surprised by this, and I think that others were, too. Hopefully, the ISC experience gets even better over the next two years. But even if it doesn’t, I’m already convinced I want to stay here and unravel some more of the secrets – or should I say – privileges of the fifth floor.

— Raksha Saraf

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