Digital Infrastructure: Core of Governance
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Leveraging Technology for Transforming Education
How education impacts demographic dividend?
1. With the country strategically investing in digital transformation, building a strong demographic dividend that reaches the remotest part of the country is an important pivot.
2. More than 50% of India’s population is under the age of 25.
3. Therefore, sustained investments in education and equipping students with 21st century skills are crucial to ensure relevance and productivity as a part of the global and Indian workforce.
What steps have been taken so far in promoting education?
1. India has almost universalized primary education by ensuring improvement in both enrolment and completion rates of primary and elementary school.
2. Along with budgetary commitments to education, initiatives such as NITI Aayog’s Atal Innovation Mission have improved the learning culture.
3. Atal Tinkering labs have brought inquisitiveness in the learning process and democratized access to technology.
4. Industry has also contributed significantly to the progress of education by committing resources and innovative solutions.
Why India faces challenges in implementing uniform education system?
1. With 16 official languages, 720 recognizable dialects, and more than 13 scripts, it is a mammoth task to implement education homogeneity in the country.
2. It is coupled with differential access to educational systems in urban and rural areas.
Which way can technology help?
Technology helps in educational development through:
1. Improved connectivity and access to educational resources.
2. Focused skilling and capacity building of students.
3. Sustainable innovation.
Where is the focus needed?
Fostering innovation and the spirit to unlearn and relearn is at the heart of the digital transformation that should be aimed for.
Providing Access and Bridging the Divide
1. To become a knowledge economy, India must embrace creation of knowledge and content and not just consume it passively.
2. Need of end point devices and advent of emerging technologies are necessary to accomplish this.
3. Due to linguistic diversity, technology can help create and translate content to suit a diverse set of needs.
4. ICT is also helping classrooms to evolve from being isolated blocks by expanding the scope for collaboration and communication between students, teachers and administrators from different geographies.
Capacity Building of Teachers
1. A teacher should evolve into being a facilitator and help the child think critically.
2. He/she also needs handholding for making the transition into an ICT enabled facility.
3. His/her skills should be assessed to ensure that he/she is adept at leveraging technology and invest in continued improvement.
4. Initiatives like upskilling of teachers through Common Service Centres is also needed.
Need to Adapt to Varying Needs
1. MAIT, an apex industry body, proposed an Edu Vision Maturity Model to suit needs of schools across five levels.
2. Level 1 schools need the most basic tech-enabled infrastructure and level 5 schools are already ICT matured but need to invest on applications and use of emerging technologies.
3. This model is helpful because it staggers the expenditure as per the current readiness of schools and provides a good benchmark for aspiring to go to the next level.
4. This also gives a direction to various CSR efforts that are investing in K-12 schools.