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The idea of establishing a model school that would provide quality all-round education to meritorious students coming from every walk of life in an environment that fosters unity in diversity was conceived in 1964. The idea was initiated by the Late King Mahendra in consultation with the then British Council representative, Lynndon Clough.

Initial inspection team (J.B. Tyson, Lynndon Clough and the architect)

After much planning and forethought, Budhanilkantha School came into existence in 1972. As a joint venture between the Government of the United Kingdom and the Government of Nepal, the Nepali government provided the required land and the British government provided all the technical and financial assistance.

Teaching started in 1973 with one building, 82 students (all boys) and about a dozen teachers. The same building served as the hostel, the cafeteria and the classrooms. The construction of other buildings (hostels, classrooms, dinning hall, assembly hall, sports hall and staff quarters) was completed by the end of 1978. Peter J. Wakeman became the first Headmaster of Budhanilkantha School and Mr. Ratna Bahadur Tamot and Mr. Gehendra Man Udas were the first Nepali personel to be appointed as teachers.

Planning for school site

The first batch of students took the School Leaving Certificate Examination (the national exam that is taken at the end of class 10) in 1980. When 11 out of 14 students listed as the Top 10 position holders in the whole nation were from this school, Budhanilkantha School established itself as the icon of quality education. In 1983, English was made the official language of instruction at Budhanilkantha School and two years later the Cambridge University’s Ordinary-Level program was introduced. The introduction of Advanced Level of the same took place in 1986.

The major change came in 1991 when it was switched from ‘Boys only school’ to a co-educational institution. The first batch of girls (14 in number) was introduced into the system the same year. The addition of two hostels, one of which was inaugurated by the late Princes Diana, in 1992 facilitated the increase in the girls’ population.

In 1994, the British Management handed over the administration to Nepalese management. In the years that followed the country saw many political and economic turmoil that no doubt poised many new challenges to Budhanilkantha. But with the support of the government, the School Management Committee (SMC), teaching and administrative staff, students, parents and many other well-wishers, the school has been able to remain a true center of excellence.

The growth of the school has never stopped. In 1997, the 10+2 program of the Higher Secondary Education Board of Nepal was introduced. New subjects were introduced in the A-level too. The student population continued to rise till it reached near about a thousand in 1999. Addition of new hostels for the girls in 1999 raised the girls’ population to over 300. The Learning Resource Centre, completed and inaugurated in 2008, has added another feather to its cap.

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