Diary - Back to basics - at 59

15th January 2010 at 00:00

A mother of grown-up children has become the oldest person to pass their secondary school exams in India - at the age of 59.

Nurjahan Begum married before she finished her secondary education and never got to complete her studies. And although she then trained as a nurse and got a job as a health supervisor, she always hankered to go back to school.

Once her daughters had grown up she had her chance, and now Mrs Begum, from Cooch Behar in West Bengal, has completed her schooling, becoming the oldest candidate to sit the higher secondary exam.

India's oldest school pupil says she got her inspiration and determination from her mother, who taught her to dream big, and is now looking at ways of continuing her education.

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