Why the schools in India need to re-think Technology after the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020

Ekta Grover
November 10, 2020
5 Minutes

“There are decades where nothing happens and weeks where decades happen”- Vladimir Lenin.

India recently witnessed one such week with the introduction of The National Education Policy.

National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 is a refreshing change. 34 years after the NEP 1986, this was much awaited. With the changing economic reality, globalization, increasing disruption in the workforce - future of jobs is changing. Which means that educating the workforce must change, too.

The Education of future should respond to increasing need for formal introduction to life skills, managing self and others,  ability to make long term connections between the abstract and interdisciplinary fields, as multiple career disruptions will happen.

According to World Economic forum -  65% of children entering primary school today will ultimately end up working in completely new job types that don’t yet exist. How do we then prepare our children for digital confidence and become lifelong learners ?

The sophisticated workplaces will require coping up with disruption, increasingly multivariable decisions. All of this means that a country obsessed with churning doctors and Engineers can no longer continue doing so.

Our thoughts on the policy

There are many things that need to happen in hip-joint with policy - a changing social fabric and attitude toward learning as a supporting system, a keen relentless drive for implementation at all levels, starting right from the microcosm of how a child is educated. Right at their schools!
In the new policy, there is space for more -  but many good intentions of the plan rest squarely on the shoulders of the schools and learning spaces. So, the policy alone won't cut it. Well trained teachers must lead the way. By adopting the right tools, and planning for a gradual adoption to the new curriculum. To create a holistic learning experience, NEP also recommends the approval of an arts-integrated model that incorporates fine and performing arts, culture, and heritage of India in the teaching-learning process to bring fun, joy, and creativity imbibe India ethos in the learners. The need of the hour is not a well-trained mind but a well-formed mind. NEP's sole focus is that facts can always be googled, but the understanding of the basic concepts and its practical implementations cannot. And this is where Technology comes into play.

The schools have ever tried to stay away from using Technology mistaking the lousy choice of either amateurish tools (white label apps custom developed for a school’s needs, which can't bring the best Engineering technology to the product), or an over-engineered Enterprise tools (ERP like LMS solutions which are overkill for K12 segment).  Increasing student engagement, motivation, accelerates learning and building a new model  connected education

Parts we see missing

Support for homeschooling. The NEP is so focused on fixing the education system that assumes that equal opportunities for all children will enable them to access these opportunities equally. More structures for NIOS and likewise Open assessments have been neglected. PARAKH in NEP should have accommodated and created compositions of capturing alternative growth. After all, learning is having children climb their own mountains. And some tax reforms/support the firms pursuing alternative learning to aid these policy changes to the implementation.

Digital literacy

Digital literacy addresses long term structural in-inequalities in a society, and an inclusive technology such as Shunya that can even out access, diagnose, predict and remediate the learning challenges with hyper personalised learning.

But what schools fail to understand is that it's more efficient for the schools to leverage Tech players, rather than outsource white label custom apps which have basic usability issues & amplify the perception of high barriers to technology.

The penetration of technology in Education has so far not attracted true bar raising engineering, algorithms, system and human centric design and how the space is ripe for a Tech first intuitive invention that speaks to the user.

What schools need

What schools need is “A” technology that has long term memory, is not a mere window to learning hopping from content to content. Education and learning today is increasingly multimodal, and with a new generation of learners. In an increasingly distracted world , communicating effectively, using high fidelity data and signals to hyper personalising learning in their own classrooms. And the first step to do this is to hyper-focus on increasing the productivity for teachers to offload mind-numbing admin tasks to Technology - which is why Shunya was proudly co-developed with Teachers PAN India.

Online Learning so far, has been a one way push based interaction, and we have tried our best to blend it with offline learning taking a multidimensional approach. Much like superimposing technology on the physical world - a world class hybrid learning for distinctive learning needs. Because no two children are same.

Join us in making Tech enabled earning the best experience people have ever had! Happy learning!