I made a long delayed visit to the North East this week. As you may know, it is a significant contributor to our Schools business, and Rajiv Singh and his team are doing a great job of establishing Pearson as the premier school publisher in the region. I would urge many of you in support departments to visit the team, and get a better understanding of the rather unique challenges they face - from IT, to Customer Service, to HR.
Naveen and I visited Guwahati, Dimapur, Kohima and Tura on this visit. In fact I am writing this on the drive from Tura to Guwahati, while in the middle of the breathtakingly beautiful Garo Hills.
Rajiv claimed that you can open the school bag of any primary school kid in the state and you will find a Pearson book. This is logical, since we publish on behalf of the state board, but its illustrative of the difference in the scale of what we are doing here, and in many other parts of the country. Here, something like 600,000 students are learning English from a Pearson book.
Cynic that I am, I asked Rajiv to stop at a small government school we passed - three classrooms, one teacher. Now we have photographic evidence of the truth of his statement.