This 50-year-old woman from Meghalaya clears Class 12 exams three decades after dropping out of school

A mother of four, and a grandmother to two, Lakyntiew Syiemlieh from the Ri Bhoi district of Meghalaya recently passed her Class 12 exams after dropping out of school three decades back.
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American track and field athlete Jacqueline Joyner-Kersee once said, “Age is no barrier. It’s a limitation you put on your mind.” 

And, 50-year-old Meghalaya resident Lakyntiew Syiemlieh stands testimonial to this saying. Hailing from the Umsning Lumumpih village in Ri Bhoi district of the state, she recently cleared her Class 12 board exams. 

50-year-old Lakyntiew Syiemlieh.



Lakyntiew, who has four children and two grandchildren, decided to pursue her higher secondary education three decades after dropping out of school. Earlier this year, she was one of the 24,267 students who appeared for the state board's Higher Secondary School Leaving Certificate (HSLLC) exam. 

Lakyntiew appeared the exams for the arts stream and had opted for subjects like Khasi, English, Political Science, Economics, and Education as her areas of specialisation.

On July 13, when the results were announced, she was elated.

“I got the third division, but I am very happy. My children are so thrilled that they started shouting, hugging, and kissing me when the results were declared,” the 50-year-old told The Indian Express.

In fact, the grandmother of two has expressed her interest in pursuing higher studies in the field of vernacular language. Lakyntiew, who dropped out of school in 1988, took up a distance education course offered by Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) in 2015.

Lakyntiew along with her classmates.

“I stopped going to school because Mathematics was too difficult for me to understand. I was offered a job to teach pre-schoolers in 2008, and that was the beginning of my love for re-learning,” she told NDTV.

Being the oldest student in the class, Lakyntiew was seen sporting her uniform while attending classes at Balawan College in Ri Bhoi district for two years. Most of her classmates called Lakyntiew as ‘Mei,’ which means mother in the Khasi language. 

Besides concentrating on academics, she also actively participated in extra-curricular activities like field trips, dance competitions, and singing challenges, among others. 

The Minister for Education of Meghalaya Lahkmen Rymbui also congratulated Lakyntiew for her achievement, saying,

“Age is not an issue when one is in search of education. Lakyntiew Syiemlieh is an example for everybody, and especially for those who give up studies midway. I congratulate her and appreciate her hard work and dedication.” 
Edited by Suman Singh