Indian Summer School: A fascinating, and at times surprisingly moving experiment
With shows such as Educating Essex, Channel 4 have had a lot of success focusing on schooling in the UK. Now they present this very different series which sees five working-class British boys, all of whom have failed their core GCSEs (only one of them has a grade C pass), head to the world-famous Doon School in the foothills of the Himalayas to see if six months of intensive studying can transform their lives.
What follows is a fascinating, and at times surprisingly moving, experiment as the boys take to the strict Indian system with various degrees of success. While dyslexic Jack, lacking in self-belief, finds the lessons a revelation and begins to dream of becoming a chef, bright but bored Jake starts as he means to go on by smuggling in booze and choosing sleep over study. Then there’s chatty Ethan, with his nail polish and long hair, who hopes one day to transition from a man to a woman. Out of mainstream education for much of his life, he struggles with the rules from the start and a stand-off emerges between the strict but gentle teachers and an emotional Ethan, who appears to see this as a less-than-enjoyable step on his journey.
Sarah Hughes, The Telegraph