New Goa High School, which till January 1962 was known as Anglo-Portuguese Institute was founded in June 1943 by the Late Shri. Gundu Sitaram Amonkar.
He was born in Chicalim, Colvale. After his middle schooling he was sent to Bombay, where he graduated from Elphinstone College in 1924. Heeding Gandhiji’s call to the youth to work in villages, he returned to Goa in 1925, after giving up a lucrative Government job in Bombay. He soon won recognition as an inspired teacher, writer, social worker and reformer.
After resigning from his teacher’s job in Sacred Heart of Jesus High School, Parra after 18 years of service, in 1943 he founded his own school in Mhapsa by reviving a defunct one called Anglo Portuguese Institute, as no new school imparting education in media other than Portuguese, could be started in Goa as per the Portuguese Government decree, as the Portuguese Government did not look kindly on English and Marathi schools for they considered them as breeding grounds of Indian nationalism.
His reputation as a teacher had travelled before him and students flocked to his school, which he started at Ximer, Ansabhat, Mhapsa in a rented house that belonged to Dr.Aba Laad. In fact in the first year itself the enrolment was 184 students. The school provided facilities for Mhapsa youth, particularly girls, to receive their secondary education, as other English teaching schools were in Parra, Arpora, Saligao and Aldona in Bardez. His school really benefited Mhapsa girls as in those days they could not easily commute to far away places. The school was recognized by Bombay University in the very first year of its inception on 22-3-1944.
He always wanted his school to be housed in its own premises and he was looking out for a suitable place. In 1946 he found one place in Altinho, Mhapsa and bought a plot measuring 1500 sq.m. approx. with a large house. The house was bought by raising a loan for the then princely sum of Rs.lO,OOO/- from Mr. Julião Apoliano D’Souza.
The school then moved to the present site. Running a school in those days was a very challenging proposition. The Portuguese Government did not give any grants and the school had to depend entirely on school fees. Moreover, many parents used to ask for freeships/half freeships. Teachers were not easily available in Goa and had to be brought from outside. His wife, Smt. Vasanti ably assisted him in school management. She was an excellent manager of funds and whenever there was a shortage of funds to meet teachers’ monthly salary, she would give her gold ornaments to be pawned to raise funds to meet teachers’ salaries.
He raised another loan of Rs.20,000/- in 1948 for extending the school building so that all the classes could function under one roof. This loan was arranged from Mr. Kaka Deshprabhu (Viscount of Pernem) at 3% per annum.
The school was recognized by the Maharastra Board of Secondary Education in 1950.
He took ill in December 1959 and started keeping indifferent health. The family expected his son Shri Suresh G. Amonkar to be with his father and take over the reins of the school. Mr. Suresh Amonkar had left for Kenya and was teaching in the Goan School, Mombasa from 1956 to 1960. He had obtained admission to a British University for the term commencing August 1961 but that was not to be. For him it was a period of personal crisis but God’s will prevailed and he returned to Goa in April 1960.
After Goa’s liberation in 1961 he named his school NEW GOA HIGH SCHOOL to reflect the aspirations of renascent Goa.
Shri. Suresh Amonkar led the new Goa High School and also played a major role in the educational and social development in post-liberation Goa.
He was elected the first General Secretary of the Goa Headmasters’ Association and worked with Mr. Albano Couto IAS, (free Goa’s first Development Commissioner) who among other projects worked hard to introduce the School Grant-In-Aid Code in Goa.
On 16-7-1964 the school along with its property was transferred to NEW GOA EDUCATIONAL TRUST . Besides the settlers Shri Gundu Sitaram Amonkar and Smt. Vasantibai Gundu Amonkar, there were four other trustees. They were Sarvashree Balkrishna Bhagwant Borker alias Bakibab Borkar, Balkrishna Ramchandra Naique, Valentino Vaz and Suresh G. Amonkar, Headmaster of New Goa High School, who was appointed as the first Executive Trustee of the Trust.
From 1960 to 1980, under the able administration and dynamic leadership of the Headmaster Shri. Suresh Amonkar, the school flourished on all fronts viz. academic, infrastructural and student enrollment (which grew from 300 to 1500 pupils).
He received the Goa State Teachers Award in 1978.
From the year 1980 to 1988 Shri. Suresh Amonkar was deputed by Govt. of Goa as Chairman of Goa Board of Secondary & Higher Secondary Education and director of State Literacy Mission & Adult Education (Govt. of Goa 1989-1991).
He was the Secretary/President of Goa Headmasters’ Association, Chief Commissioner of Goa State Bharat Scouts & Guides and member of Educational Council of Goa Daman & Diu. He has worked on several official Committees of the Government of Goa dealing with educational matters. He was the president of Council of Boards of Secondary Education (COBSE) for one term.
Shri Amonkar was active in Municipal Council and Goan politics after liberation. As a member of Congress party under the leadership of Shri Purushottam Kakodkar. He was active worker against merger of Goa in Maharashtra and addressed several meetings in Bardez. He contested Mapusa seat as Congress candidate. He was elected twice as councilor of Mapusa Municipal Council and served for eleven years. He was also chairperson of the Council.
He has written numerous books like Goa Opinion Poll, Text Book of Geography, Handbook for Headmasters and Teachers and Report on vocationalisation of education in Andhra Pradesh & Karnataka. He has actively espoused and supported the secular cause of inter religious dialogue in Goa by addressing meetings and thus bringing different communities closer to one another .
Other Heads of the school who have contributed to the continued progress and prosperity of the school are :
Smt. Sudha S. Amonkar, (recipient of National Teachers Award in 2000),
Shri Aureo Cunha Gomes(2000-2002),
Smt. Lata R. Salkar (2003-2004),
Smt. Anuradha S. Karpe. (2004-2008)
Smt. Mabel De Sa (since 2008)
On 15-12-2003 the Trustees named the secondary section of the School as G. S. AMONKAR VIDYA MANDIR to honour the Founder’s memory and vision.
The school has now expanded with a new building block in the middle joining the Northern and Southern wings. Currently, three different sections (Secondary, Primary and Pre-Primary) accommodate approximately 1600 pupils in two shifts
The board of Trustees has been expanded on 30th July 2006 which is as follows: Mr. Suresh Amonkar (Executive trustee), Mr. Balkrishna Naik, Mr. Valentino Vaz, Mr. Sanjay Usgaonkar, Mr. Raj Amonkar, Mr. Mohan Kaul, Mr. Shantaram Shet, Mr. Sharadkumar Rao, Mr. Gurudas Natekar, Mr. Gurudatta Bhakta, Mr. Sudin Usgaonkar, Mr. Prashant Mahatme, Mr. Suharsh Usgaonkar, Mr. Gautam Amonkar, Mr. Chandan Naik, Mr. Ashish Prabhu Verlekar ,Mr. Ajay Sardesai & Mr. Rozendo Mendonsa.
After the demise of Trustree Mr. Balkrishna Naik, Mr. Sanjay Naik was invited to join the board of trustees in May 2013.
Today, over 6000 New Goa alumni are meaningfully contributing towards social, educational and economic development in and outside of Goa.
The list of eminent luminaries who were this school’s alumni is too long to be listed here.
But some of them include Goa’s Hon. Chief Minister in Shri Manohar Parrikar, Ex-Director of a National Institute of Oceanogrphy & current Vice Chancellor of Goa University Dr. Satish Shetye, several ministers and MLAs, councilors of Municipalities, eminent doctors, engineers, architects, advocates, chartered accountants , teachers and professors in Indian and foreign universities, Corporate heads, Entrepreneurs, a Bishop, and committed honest citizens who have contributed to the good of society.
Our ex-student Shri Suresh Amonkar, besides devoting time for the school, also supported the cause of `Antar Bharati’, which seeks to promote national integration by encouraging the cultural understanding between states of Indian Union.
To attain this objective Shri Amonkar single-handedly pursued the task of translating and researching ancient Indian texts during the past fifteen years.
He has translated `Dhammapada’(a book on teachings of Gautam Buddha), from Pali into Konkani for which he received `Sahitya Academy Translation Award 1999. He also translated `Bhagwadgeeta’ from Sanskrit into Konkani in 2002,`Thirukkural’(a Tamil Classic) into Konkani, in 2004, for which he was presented the Late Shyam Kakodkar Award by Konkani Kala Kendra. His translation of `Jnaneshwari’ from Marathi into Konkani, in 2005, bagged the Gurukul Pratishthan, Pune felicitation award . `Japuji Saheeb’( a book on teachings of sikh guru Gobind Singh) has been translated from Punjabi into Konkani, in 2008 `Jakata Tales’ and `Zen Katha’ have also been translated by Shri Amonkar in Literary Journals. Translation of`Gospel according to St.John from the New Testament of the Bible in Konkani was published in 2009 and `Zencho Dishtawo’ on 16-6-2013..
The Government of India recognized his work as Educationist, Social Worker and Writer, and honoured him with `Padma Shri’ Award on 26th January 2009.
Padma Shri. Suresh G. Amonkar is the Executive Trustee of New Goa Educational Trust and was the Chairperson of School Managing Committee since its inception, and is also on the Board of `Bal Bhawan’ Goa.
In the meeting of New Goa Educational Trust held on 20th October 2012, Mr. Suresh Amonkar proposed that Mr. Sanjay S. Usgaonkar takes over as the Chairperson of School Managing Committee. The proposal was unanimously seconded by the other trustees and from 3rd November 2012, Mr. Sanjay S.Usgaonkar took over as the Chairperson of School Managing Committee.