As we all know that the pandemic has caused a havoc in the world schools and colleges. Teachers, students and parents are struggling with various concerns. There arises a need for reform in our conventional education system.
Although, our government under the guidance of PM Shri Narendra Modi has taken number of safety precautions in numerous sectors to however, it’s more focussed on the economy, infrastructure, and other support systems. And, yet our education sector has suffered quite a bit.
In order to protect the students and our country from the second wave of corona, the option of online classes has taken prominence. This step aptly goes in parallel with our aatmanirbhar bharat campaign which has become a motto of the masses in the country.
The best way to adapt is to become self dependent by promoting online education and providing access of the basic means like computer, laptops, internet to our students to attain education and continue their studies in normalcy.
Pacing up with the developed countries, hereon students from the remotest and poorest of backgrounds will have access to the best learning content. With a multi-channel approach to combat these issues, now TV channels can also run educational content for students.
Secondly, the teachers too should be trained well which can help reduce inequality in the Quality education imparted to various sections of society. Moreover, widespread promotion of online classes and digital media will provide room for students to develop self motivation and become independent. Lastly, access to best digital content for all, as well as the room for creativity and innovation will help our future citizens to think, analyse and get more clarity about what is right and wrong for themselves, for society as well as future of our nation.
Kofi Anan said, ‘Knowledge is power, Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family.’
As the Pandemic tightened its grip over the social fabric, the education sector came to a grinding halt, only to pick up it’s threads and start the prospect of Online Learning.There is no date in sight as to when the schools will reopen. The resulting impact on students across India are far reaching and irreversible.
India is a large country with varied Topography and socio- economic identities. While there is large network of Government schools, we also have a fair share of Privately funded schools of varying standards.
Only a handful of fortunate children are availing online education,as only 24% households in India possess smartphones and 11.5% of the households that have children of between the ages of 5 and 18, have a computer with an internet connection. Under these circumstances, we have a vast population of students thrown in back gear. The disproportionate access will lead to disparity in Teachers and students struggling with Digital Infrastructure, Learning device and Internet availability. Hence, their quality of teaching and Learning will be substandard.
We have already lost 6 months in the process. How then can we claim to give the remaining 75% Indian student population quality access to education? We could further tweak the dream of RTE to RTDE i.e Right to Digital Education!
Vision of our pride Prime Minister Sh. Narendra Modi to make India a self reliant Nation. This is a vision which can take not only Indian but the entire Nation to the level, where each one will look up to us. If we look at the leaders of top companies in the world, Indians are everywhere . To name a few - Google CEO- Indian, Microsoft CEO- Indian, Adobe CEO- Indian , Master card CEO are Indians and we can name many leading companies which are working under the leadership of Indians but here the question arises, If Indian can lead the world, why not India? Let's try to understand why these Global leaders are doing wonders outside the nation - the main ingredient required to do well in any field is - security, security of basic needs - we need to give that feeling of security to each citizen of the Nation. We need to earn the trust of youth of the Nation that they can accomplish their dreams and aims within the Nation. When citizen has that feeling of security and trust that enhances the ability to take risk.
Education plays a vital role in building the Nation; therefore, we must come up with the programmes in educational institutes which work to encourage our young children. Educational policies must focus on these areas -
Developing Leadership Skills - Focus should be on developing Leadership skills from the childhood itself. We must frame policies which encourage our youth to become entrepreneurs.
Creativity - The more creative the mind is more it will experiment and work toward creation. It is very important that educational institutes give environment to young minds to think creatively and encourage them to experiment with their creativity
Standardization - We see diversity in everything, every area, every product . There must be some standardization across every sector so that each one can has standards for every product. First and foremost we need to get standardization in education itself. I believe New Education Policy will be able to meet this parameter.
Decision making - We must equip our students with skills and knowledge that can help them take decisions. Environment should be such that encourages child to take decision and mistakes should be welcome.
If youth of the Nation has the feeling of security and trust , and is imbibed with the leadership and creativity, then it will take us towards the leading role and will make us self reliant- AtamNirbhar.
Instead of spending so much money on welfare programmes, we must ensure work on education of each and every child in such a way that instead of taking advantage of welfare policies he/she should be able to work and earn himself/herself.
We are happy to see that positive changes are coming up which develop faith in the citizen that he will lead a life without any fear of (unemployment, scarcity etc) anything but with the sense of security and trust on the Nation. It is time when we all i.e. Educational Institutes, Educationists, students and everyone has to stand with our Honorable Prime Minister and towards his Vision and Mission of AtamNirbhar Bharat. Together we can and we will accomplish the mission of making India AtamNirbhar Bharat.
In a diverse democracy like India, Government announcements and plans are analysed, praised and criticised at several levels left, right and centre. But the end truth remains the same that in this time of crisis, the Government of India is genuinely trying to reenergize the education. The new education policy is a biggest step ever taken towards the reformation.
The sudden outbreak of Covid 19 has mesmerized the whole Nation. As the nation-wide Lockdown in emerging out of the corona pandemic comes to an end, educational institutions, students, parents and teachers are struggling with different concerns. On the one hand, re-opening of schools exposes students and teachers to community spread; on the other hand, extended lock-down translates into loss of education for all students. Therefore, in order to protect our students and our country from second wave of Corona, the option of online education needs to be explored for all schools in India at least for the next academic year
There are concerns about reaching out to the remote corners of the country, but the investment in technology and new dedicated channels can address this. Majority households and even school going children have access to internet and laptops and therefore, in comparison to the risks of COVID-19 infection, it may be better to study online. Besides the technology and access part, online education also has several other benefits; despite the fact that it may bring a disruption to the existing model of conventional education.
Online education can help reduce inequality in the “Quality” of faculty and education available to students across different schools and colleges in India. We have a large number of universities and colleges, but not all faculties are qualified. Even with top colleges and schools, often, a vicious loop of mediocrity is formed and education quality suffers. By removing the nuisance of unnecessary overheads and administration and by bringing the best faculty in direct contact with the students through online learning can do wonders for motivation of both, the faculty and student.
Access to online classes and digital media will provide room to students to develop self-motivation and become independent. After all, conventional teaching is often criticized with spoon – feeding and over emphasis on exams and internal tests and assessments. This reduces the creativity in students and makes them dependent on marks, and placements that are related to exam results.
Online teaching will save the time to travel as well as the negative sides of gossip and bullying from peers, both for students and faculty, a phenomenon which is so common these days unfortunately.
Access to the best digital content for all, as well as the room for creativity and innovation will help our future citizens to think, analyze and get clarity about what is right and wrong for themselves, for society as well as future of our nation. Faculty will get more time to do research, as administrative work will get reduced. Currently, administration and discipline has taken a priority over academics and research. Online education will give prominence to the genuine teachers and researchers.
Online classes are the best solution to protect our children from corona infection and also ensure continuity of education at least until the pandemic threats exist. Parents will not worry as their kids can study safely from home. Teachers can also teach from home and give more time to self study and research.
Traffic and congestion on roads will be less if more than 100 million school students do not physically go to school and instead, study from home, and will help reduce pollution and save our environment.
Kids are smart in learning new technology and will enjoy online education. Students will not need to carry heavy school bags to school and no crowd in buses and rickshaws. Students will be forced to learn to study by themselves at home through text books and through online classes. As our students become more independent, they will carry these values as they grow old to be more responsible citizens, will have more time to pursue their passion, and may create their own start-ups, thus help towards making of an Atma-Nirbhar Bharat
At Malwa Sahodaya, Punjab (consists of 20-25 CBSE schools) which is actively working under the dynamic leadership of Dr. Sanjay Chugh in the capacity of Zonal Director, We are completely aligned with the vision of a Atma-Nirbhar Bharat and believe that access to the best of digital education to our students will ignite the next wave of local innovation and economic growth. Growth oriented education shall become the foundation of a self-reliant India.
Aatma Nirbhar Bharat-The Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi, announced that the aim of this campaign was that of making the country independent against the tough competition in the global supply chain and to help in empowering the poor, labourers, migrants who have been adversely affected by COVID.
Several norms and facilities have been introduced by the Govt regarding the same. Crowd sourcing of ideas is being done at all levels to find out ways in which our country can become self reliant.
Education will play a key role in making India self reliant. The New Education Policy 2020 holds the key to the same. The focus on IT, coding, vocational courses and vernacular language has been done purely to reinforce the best interests of our children as they get ready to face the future.
Schools and institutions have to pull themselves up- sharpen their processes to meet global standards. No student should be lost to another country. At university levels, too many changes and upgradations can be done.
The student is the key figure in all of this. The feeling of belongingness and responsibility to the country has to be nurtured in each child. We have to go back to the old saying of country before family before self. The day our children and parents come out of their self concerns and think about the greater good- half of the task is already done.
Instead of blindly running after the ‘good’ life abroad, a child should feel the confidence and pride that comes with Being Indian - Creating Indian and Promoting Indian.
Today India is celebrating 74th Independence Day. We translate Independence as 'swtantra' in Hindi. स्वतंत्र is made up of two words स्व and तंत्र . स्व means own and तंत्र means mechanism.
Being independent means having your own mechanism, your own system and hence being self reliant.
India will enjoy its freedom and independence in true sense when every citizen is self reliant.
India can achieve this self reliance or atamnirbharat when every child will be trained to find solution of his problems ,to innovate and the courage to make.
The Indian parenting mindset is to educate the children to get good services. In public sector or private sector. To make India atam nirbhar the parents and schools must educate the child to serve the family, society and Nation.
"Education is the best friend. An educated person is respected everywhere. Education beats the beauty and the youth." - Chanakya
The onslaught of the corona virus across the globe has brought many a machinery to a standstill! Among the many sectors affected, the education system is adversely affected. The consequences are far-reaching and could possibly drag into the next few years. No doubt, this is the crucial time for education sector because entrance tests of several universities and competitive examinations are held during this period. The education sector is facing unprecedented challenges and needs to adapt and find solutions to keep children motivated and in their route to learning.
How will the education sector and educators deal to overcome the challenges? How will children continue to learn, even as school, by necessity, becomes a digital space? Every educational institution is busy trying to combat the challenges in whatever way it feels, best!
Self-reliance in education space, during and after this pandemic:
We need to organize our school spaces in such a way that the issues that surfaced are understood with deep empathy and every child’s capacity to learn is appreciated and nurtured. It is important that every child is enabled to grow into a self-reliant individual. Yet, mutual interdependence too must be emphatically nurtured. School spaces are to be all-inclusive. Collaborative learning and exploration are to be encouraged and the idea of mutually exclusive competition must be actively discarded.. Our schools, and parents too, must work towards achieving a fine balance between self-reliance and interdependence for the children.
There are several ways to tame the dismal situation and work towards a more relaxed, wholesome, entertaining and yet up-building that would help undo the shackles of hopelessness and despair - such as taking to some hobbies, such as listening to music and appreciating other art forms. Reading is another indispensable activity. The relative solitude of reading enables children to traverse multiple worlds and gain access to a variety of human experiences across time and space. Without a doubt, it nurtures imagination and creativity. Yoga and sports are an essential part of the school curriculum. These should be given a renewed focus as they play a crucial role in physical, mental and emotional well-being.
Self reliance in education would mean in a nutshell :
Learning by doing and critically analyze rather than rote learning.
Developing an ability to research, publish papers to develop new line of thinking at the grass root level
Encouraging to Design and Innovate without the boundaries of set syllabus and fear of failure.
Vocational training after grade 8th as per the choice and aptitude of the learner.
Removing barriers to collaborate with world class institutes to encourage quality in school and college education.
Less regulation, less interference by authorities, more autonomy to growth oriented educational institutes.
Internships and work experience as part of senior secondary curriculum.
Having strong students’ profile criteria for admission in higher educational institutes.(profile that includes voluntary community service, internship experience and academic excellence)
Respecting and providing training to teachers for building work related capabilities in the students.
Career counseling and employability support at the secondary stage of education.
During the pandemic, the use of technology in education has been put to test on an unprecedented scale. We need to draw lessons from this period and shape the evolution of educational technology in a manner that it is organically adaptive to our educational philosophy of collaborative and child- centred learning .
The pandemic also opened up another portal for children – technology in education which was extensively used and has laid the basis for future course of action in many fields including the education sector!
So in word and spirit if we could move forward keeping the pandemic behind as a bad dream, looking for positive aspects in every field, we would surely be well on our way in making our country. "Aatmanirbhar" in accordance with the vision of our P.M, Shri Narendra Modiji !