‘Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.’ Nelson Mandela gave this famous learning in 2003. Today in 2019, this learning has the same significance. Education is a critical investment that we make to reap benefits in the long run. It is the cue to eradicate gender discrimination, reduce poverty, prevent illness, build a sustainable planet and foster harmony. But let’s look at the ground reality of the quality and status of education in the country. The latest Annual Status of Education Report 2018 (Rural) or AESR 2018 shows a clear mirror to a country that is claiming to be a hub of knowledge and talent.
The AESR 2018 report collected data from 596 districts in India and showed the learning deficit faced by our next generation. Below are some findings presenting a dismal picture of education in India.
This dismal outcome in the education sector is despite the Right to Education (RTE) Act that is making compulsory education for children between the age of 6 to 14 years. There are other initiatives like ‘Pade Bharat Badhe Bharat’, ‘BetiBachaoBetiPadhao’, ‘UDAAN’ etc. But unfortunately, all these efforts are not translating into substantial learning, raising doubts about the precedence of Central and State Governments.
This is one aspect of the situation. The other aspect calls for offering a sustainable and practical solution to the bridge the learning deficit in the country. At a time when the world where we live is transforming itself by ‘smart’ technology, the education sector can derive the benefits from smart digital practices. Technology in the classrooms does not necessarily translate into the presence of digital devices. It includes using technology to improve effectiveness and engagement in the classrooms. Adopting smart digital technology-based learning and teaching techniques can combat various pitfalls that need an urgent confrontation. With that in mind, there are reasons that elaborate a 21st-century view of effective, collaborative and competent learning.
Using technology as a mode of imparting knowledge can open new doorways to new experiences, new pioneering and new routes of understanding, collaboration, and training. Education, today, deserves a digital overhaul to get better and relevant ROI in the future.
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