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Updated On - Nov 15, 2021 PM

In India, 60% of students have no internet access

A study conducted by the Azim Premji Foundation showed that more than 60 percent of children in schools in India do not have access to educational opportunities online.

In the one and a half years since the Covid pandemic erupted in India, The technological divide is continuing to create difficulties in learning and teaching remotely According to experts. Learning and teaching activities needed to be moved online when the disease forced the closing of colleges and schools. Although technology has ensured that learning wasn't completely suspended, however, the digital divide is still making learning remotely an 'operational nightmare'.

60 percent of students are unable to use online education.

A study conducted by The Azim Premji Foundation showed that more than 60% of students in India are unable to access online education opportunities. Similar research conducted by Oxfam India found that even for students attending private schools in urban areas 50% of parents complained about problems with Internet connectivity and speed. Another third of them struggled with the costs of mobile phone data.

A mere 20 percent of school-aged children in India were offered remote education in the pandemic of which only half of them took part in online live lessons in a recent national sample survey conducted by ICRIER and LIRNEasia a think tank that focuses on the digital aspect of policy.

School drop out rate during Covid

In actuality, 38 percent of households claimed that they had at least one kid who had been unable to attend school because of Covid-19. "Digital schooling was the only logical way forward to continue learning for children during the pandemic. But now, there is a need to categorically address some pertinent issues for building a more resilient system for the future, regardless of whether conventional schooling or digital is the primary way forward," said Amruta Singh an education specialist who is working in K12 education.

According to Sangeeta Gadre who is a Delhi University professor, the issue of digital divides was a problem that faced both sides of the academic exchange whether the teacher or student. "While advancing the cause of digitalization, these challenges must be accounted for. We also need to be cognizant of the fact that women are proportionately more disadvantaged when it comes to the usage of digital devices," Gadre stated.

Technology's relevance

Urvashi Sahni is an associate of the Center for Universal Education at the Brookings Institution, said, "Technology has the potential to achieve universal quality education and improve learning outcomes. But to unleash its potential, the digital divide and the embedded gender divide must be addressed."

"Access to technology and the Internet is an urgent requirement in the information age. It should no longer be a luxury," she declared.

A professor at Ambedkar University, "The digital divide continues to make remote learning an operational nightmare. Over a year into the pandemic, it is still a challenge and cannot replace the traditional classroom learning."