ICT in School Education and Policy Matters
eINDIA 2010 hosted the School Education INDIA 2010, where eminent dignitaries witnessed deliberation on Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan, strategising and implementation of policies on usage of ICT, challenges in developing eLearning and role of ICT in advancing inclusive education. The track also included discussion rounds on different education models, pedagogy and and ragogy in ICT mediated classrooms, as a part of Principals' Conclave.
Session I :: Role of Technology in Rashitraiya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) Programme: Challenges and Opportunities.
|The aim of the session was to carry out deliberations focusing on the provisions and hindrance in implementation of the said initiative and role of ICT in its facilitation.
In about 7000 schools ICT implementation has been done, out of the 18000 high schools in the Andhra Pradesh. Teachers are given training for updating them with the ICT element.The Panelists for Session I consisted of :
Dr SS Jena gave a presentation on ICT in open schooling in context of RMSA. Open schooling is seeing a paradigm shift from one time schooling to life long education, fixed to flexible timing, instructional based learning to learner based instruction, and so on. He spoke about the challenges in the field, course delivery system, augmentation of learning resources, PPP and ICT based resource support for open schooling.
Dr Subir Roy talked about ICT implementation at schools and use of computers only, for ICT literacy. He told about RMSA in West Bengal with 10,000 secondary schools , grant of INR 5 lac per school, challenges being faced, and concluded by talking about effective elearning systems (to comprise of interactivity and simulation).
Amit Gupta then spoke about large Indian market space, requirement of a policy to let the private players interact at large with the education system. RMSA needs to bring not a few but all schools together under the benefit umbrella. He concluded by requesting government representative Shri SC Khuntia, to consider giving an "actual shape to PPP models" allowing more private participation and benefit to maximum number of schools.
Shri SC Khuntia then addressed the gathering, beginning by speaking about RMSA, as a logical extension to SSA. Universalisation of education through secondary education is a highlighting factor for RMSA. He emphasised on need to increase access, equity and quality – the three pillars for RMSA. He spoke about new ways of learning, that are ICT enabled and initiatives being taken by government for the same. For instance, in KVS and NVS are mostly ICT enabled now, under the ICT enabled school scheme. There is an effort to equip high school children to cope with future and it is a must to make teaching-learning can be enhanced using ICT as leverage. He spoke about capacity building of teachers and importance of PPP as being envisaged under RMSA. Government has been recently working on Draft National Curriculum for Teachers and there ICT is being included in every pre-training course and also the in-service training programmes. He also described about providing online libraries, e-comprehensive evaluation and assessment, easy monitoring for the parents regarding the school progress of children and scholarships for the children with use of ICT. Near the end of his address, he explained that besides scholastic activities many other educational activities, along with curriculum reforms and classroom transactions will also be facilitated by ICT, under umbrella of RMSA.
Session II :: Moving Towards Digitally Equipped Schools: Priorities and Challenges
|The aim of the session was to have secretaries and principals of schools to discuss the ways to deliberate on how interactive classroom teaching learning modules can be developed and implemented.The Panelists for Session I consisted of :
Terry Wason, next spoke highlighting the role of in-service professional development and to strengthen teachers skills. He also explained that social networking sites should be considered as learning sites such as teacher tube, a part of YouTube based site, where teachers share their learnings. C Neelap put forth two questions – whether you should create technology or perpetually be acceptable of people who create technology for school. He described that it is important to include ICT in teaching so that we can compete with global standards. He insisted that the preachers must provide guaranteed quality knowledge and smiling learning which makes every student effective user of technology.
K Sadagopan mentioned that eLearning is better known as "extended or revolving or everywhere learning." He explained that future will be better than. The traditional methods are being challenged today and ICT implementation, especially in past ten years, has proved its worth with increased graduation rate, more meaning connection between staff and students and stronger relationships of academic institutions with business. He told that quality content acquired for effective teaching-learning and finally said, "we need to bring learning to people instead of people to learn."
Prof BP Khandelwal, to begin with, spoke about life long learning. Technology has arrived, has made learning more vibrant and things are being turned into more interactive and attractive in classroom. He made an important point that teachers and their value must never be negated. He mentioned about importance of values that lie in education and International Commission Report for Education adopted by all UNESCO member countries where emphasis is on 'learning the treasure within'. He put forth that with technology there should be implementation and supplementation, especially with respect to capacity building.
Session III :: Digital Storytelling: ICT mediated Learning and Practices (Special session sponsored by Commonwealth of Educational Media Centre for Asia)
|The aim of the session was to share stories related to using radio media for dissemination of knowledge in schools.The Panelists for Session I consisted of :
CIET has two audio studios and two video studio from where daily networking, conferencing and interactive programmes are broadcasted.
Vandana Arimardan talked about work of CIET, where they have two audio studios and two video studio from where daily networking, conferencing and interactive programmes are broadcasted. She described that they broadcast programmes from Gyan Vani and Gyan Darshan. They have 12 channels and thousands of audio clips of historical importance. Then she elaborated about the launch of 'I-Radio', which is a form of web-casting. For the broadcast towers are required while I-Radio operates with help of a cost effective set up and from there send signals from internet (use of MTNL Broadband), globally. They work for the education of children with effective use of technology.
Prof Kamat added to above that they also convert text books into to digital books that are available to visually challenged students.
Khor Kok Yeow talked about 'Life Size' webcast method at WOU. He explained about the biggest challenge in usual webcast is the cost, which is very expensive. He talked about challenges available at WOU – the bandwidth, audio and video and Internet – for implementation of I-Radio in Malaysia. Finally, about the I-Radio implementation he told, "It was a big success when received positive feedback and comment from different RO and public internet users, knowing that the audio/video is clear and without lag."
Ahmadzulkarnin Ramli presented a case study – 'Digital Story Telling (DST): The Case of Open University Malaysia (OUM). At OUM, DST has been seen as a facilitator of learning both by itself and in combination with other instructional elements. He concluded by saying, "In order to stimulate DST development for education purposes at acceptable cost and timeline; investing to have an in-house Learning Materials Development Centre (CiDT) is the right decision for OUM."
Buddhika gave a presentation on 'Telradio', a form of internet radio service. He briefly explained the meaning of digital story telling as an "art of telling stories with a variety of digital multimedia and DST workshops that have been conducted in Sri Lanka. He spoke about applications of the same in the area of health care, education, disaster management and community. The challenges faced by his institution mainly comprised of script writing, content dissemination and low number of DST produced after the workshops. Kalinga Athulathmudali spoke about how I-Radio helps in breaking geographical boundaries in elearning. He explained the concept of 'Tech Katha', and explained that how iRadio is a highly interactive, on demand way of breaking language barriers, sharing knowledge and building communities with self-support.
Zeena Abdul Gafoor gave a presentation on I-Radio in Maldives. They started this programme in Maldives about six months ago. She described the workshops hosted through I-radio with parents, teachers and students, to disseminate knowledge to all. To sustain and maintain I-Radio there is an Education Development Centre, where there is a station and a studio; and with help of professional experts broadcasting of relevant programmes is done but a major challenge is presence of only a few producers.
Session IV :: Role of eLearning to Enhance Subject Knowledge of Students
|The aim of the session was to explore how multi-media instruments can help in encouraging children to learn in productive way, through deliberations amongst the implementers of learning.The Panelists for Session I consisted of :
|iRadio is a highly interactive, on demand way of breaking language barriers, sharing knowledge and building communities with self-support.
He spoke about quality of teacher in classroom, appreciating different activities that teachers indulge in schools, understand the needs of teachers, understand student needs and considering increasing level of engagements of students.
After each session, there was a question-answer round, after which all the speakers were thanked with a token of appreciation.