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Arushi Mishr

Founder of The English Literacy Project which is teaching 3000 Children of Migrant Labourers

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Building in the Edtech Sector during the Pandemic: An opportunity in disguise?

The Edtech Sector in both national and international markets has encountered a swift upsurge in the aftermath of the pandemic

The Covid-19 pandemic’s onslaught on human lives and livelihood has left the world reeling with an unprecedented crisis with almost all the traditional operations remaining disrupted. A systemic shift was also seen with most educational institutions globally plugging into ‘digital classrooms’ to keep the learning and development process of the students seamless. Remote learning induced by edtech saw a boom in consumption and expected all the students to connect virtually in the new normal.

India’s edtech startups raised over $2.2 billion in funding in 2020 itself. Although most students and their parents were keen on switching to the new-age learning platform in the modern world, India’s stark socio-economic condition throughout its expanse posed several challenges, with most villagers, marginalised workers, etc., finding it impossible to get their child logged into the virtual classrooms.

For many of the poor in India, the pandemic disrupted the children’s education which could lead to a ‘lost generation’ for countries that are severely impacted. To make learning feasible and accessible by the lower socio-economic strata in the country, The India Literacy Project - an edtech platform - allows students to access online videos and worksheets and use these resources at zero cost. Designed aptly, the videos and worksheets ensure that the learning does not need the involvement of teachers in real-time, yet the queries of the students are met. On the back of robust digital infrastructure in most remote regions in India, edtech is fast spreading throughout the country and so is the reach of groups like The Indian Literacy Project.

Irrespective of the students coming from either low-income or high-income groups, edtech has become essential in light of the pandemic, and also the only channel enabling children to learn. Given that the supply of edtech providing platforms is limited, and the population in the country vast, there is a lot more demand and potential for such platforms and curriculums in a bid to support the children. Failing this, many more families will be forced into poverty and the rich-poor divide in the country will continue to widen. The rapid innovation in technology and the widespread digital infrastructure that the government is investing in, provides with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to leverage edtech platforms to make education available to one and all.

Edited by Anisha Aditya from BW Disrupt.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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