The contributions made by the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI), the first indigenous Catholic Congregation of India, in the educational field of Kerala were pioneering and revolutionary. Blessed Kuriakose Elias Chavara, the Founder of the CMI Congregation, established the first Catholic School of Kerala at Mannanam in 1846. All the other CMI Monasteries also followed that movement. In the year 1864, Blessed Chavara, in his capacity as the Vicar General of the Syro-Malabar Church, ordered all the parishes to start schools adjacent to them. This historic order triggered the emergence of a galaxy of educational institutions all over the State. It also became the basis of the socio-economic development of the whole State.
The main aim of the entire educational endeavour of the Congregation is to bring about a social transformation with emphasis on an option for the poor, coupled with a target of a moral reconstruction of society. Today, the CMIs run about 500 educational institutions which include Schools, Arts and Science Colleges, Autonomous Colleges, M. Ed and B. Ed Colleges , Engineering Colleges, Polytechnic Colleges, ITC Centres, Nursing Schools, Research Centres and a Medical College.