The ‘Digital Divide’ in Education caused by COVID-19 is an issue that has been overshadowed by the human devastation that has been witnessed. However, it is a potential catastrophe that could leave an entire generation of children (particularly those from economically vulnerable communities) with insurmountable learning gaps and stunted emotional growth.
Ensuring equitable access to digital devices and the internet is the only realistic solution that can help alleviate this injustice. All students from Grade 9-12 must be provided laptops/tablets with a preloaded 4G SIM Card so that they may benefit from the abundance of high-quality online content and stay connected to their teachers and peers even if schools remain closed for the foreseeable future.
Bridging the Digital Divide in Delhi Government Schools
In collaboration with Delhi@2047 partners, the Delhi Government is planning to provide tablets (with 10’ screens & a wireless keyboard) to all students in Grades 10 & 12 (approximately 400,000 in number). These grades have been specifically chosen as they have to necessarily appear for the CBSE board examinations at the end of the year and therefore a good quality device that is exclusively available to them is necessary for their preparation.
To supplement this, the Department of Education is providing high-quality academic online content; sourced from renowned partners such as Khan Academy or created in-house by our teachers in our state-of-the-art studio. Teachers will be conducting their classes via Google Classroom to ensure that students are able to understand the lessons in these online modules. Additionally, all grades will also be receiving regular academic exercises and worksheets via a semi-online medium such as Whatsapp.
A permanent move towards the blended mode of learning will be a certainty in the post-COVID world. In such a scenario, the collaboration with Delhi@2047 partners will empower students from Delhi Government schools to continue learning in the same manner as their peers in private schools and develop the necessary skills to be competitive in a world where the lines between online and offline have been blurred.
Project Duration: The project will commence in August 2021 with a target to procure all the devices by October 2021.