Impact of digitization on education
Technology has been an essential part of every household in India. Every sector has seen a trickling down of innovation, machines and technology in our lives. It has made our lives, easier and faster. To simplify it further, it has taken the centre stage of all our lives has coerced other hesitant sectors to adapt to the fiercely changing lifestyle.
Not just technology, even the internet has conquered our hearts and mind. The impact of this sudden shift has left a visible imprint in every industry. The pandemic has left a lasting impression on all our lives. While we have taken to working from home, adapting to attending meetings on Teams, Zoom or Google meetings, the education sector has also seen a drastic change.
For all the reasons above, Internet consumption in India rose by 13%. And it is estimated to penetrate to reach above 55% by the end of 2025.
Plenty of e-portals have come up to give space for learners to enrol for their online courses and training. Seeing the huge number of takers of digital education, universities, colleges and schools have started offering online learning classes. Understanding the importance of penetrance of education in rural and urban areas alike, the Government of India implemented a new National Education Policy (NEP). Hence, the Ministry of Education was allotted ₹93,224.31 crores in the Union Budget 2021–2022 for child education.
The Digital divide
The shift to online education brought forth the divide created between the haves and the have nots. There was a need to patch this gap that became evident as government and public schools. The challenge during the pandemic was to make education accessible for all children irrespective of their financial background, their location, internet connectivity and bandwidth.
Private schools continued to conduct online classes while schoolchildren from Government and Government-aided schools struggled without a smartphone in their localities; having an internet connection was out of the question. There was a dire need to bid adieu to traditional teaching methods and address issues like shortage of teachers and teaching methodologies.
Many children NGOs came forward to work as a bridge to reduce the divide. While several NGOs worked to provide the latest tools and methods of imparting knowledge by training teachers, others helped by reaching out to students in the remotest corners of the country by distributing Tablets, smartphones, etc. Other Indian NGOs also helped children in this pandemic by supplying study materials to children right at their homes so that they continue practising, learning or rehearsing in the absence of school teachers.
For children coming from challenging economic backgrounds, school’s mid-day meals were the only source of a full square meal. To address food gaps in children, The Akshaya Patra Foundation initiated the Happiness Kits Programme where each mid-day meal beneficiary received a Happiness Kit. These Kits would support their health, hygiene, nutrition and education.
Donate online to organisations that help bridge the gaps between the equipped and the unequipped. With your online donations, you can reach out to provide a secure future to children who have lost hope due to the pandemic. By enabling them with educational technologies and supplies, you can help them stay on par with other children who have the access to technology in general.