education, Edtech

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The pandemic has turned around the entire situation in the education sector. The transition from traditional learning to digital methods has helped in the growth of EdTech startups and existing companies. We have witnessed a significant surge in the usage of online courses, e-learning platforms, and language learning apps, coding for kids, skill development in the youth, and video conferencing tools for kids.


Read more: Budget 2021: Expectations from IT Healthtech M&E and Homegrown Startups


EdTech companies expect help from the budget 2021 for various tax cuts, easier credit access, and other benefits to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Tech Panda gathered opinions from EdTech experts about what they expect.

Reducing the GST Rate

Sumeet Jain, Co-founder, Yocket

“Taxable supply implies an inventory of products or services or leviable to tax under GST. Likewise, the administrations given by an educational foundation to its aspirants, personnel, staff, or educational institutions are not needed to be burdened under GST. This may hamper the career choices and opportunities and may affect the country majorly. Educational institutions and courses are being taxed 18%, which should be reduced to around 5%.”

Rajeev Tiwari, Founder of STEMROBO Technologies

“The Government has been giving so much emphasis on the penetration of Digital Services and Financial Inclusion in the BFSI Segment. Still, as far as education is concerned, only conventional school education has been kept out of GST. Innovation and tinkering based Ed-Tech firms still have to pay GST @18%. There should be some provision wherein they need to pay reduced [email protected]% or so.”

Educational institutions and courses are being taxed 18%, which should be reduced to around 5%.

Anoop Gautam, CEO and Co-founder, Tinker Coders

“The current taxation of 18% on the EdTech sector can be reduced to a lower percentage, so that accessible quality digital education becomes a viable option for students coming from all sections of society. The recent months have witnessed the maximum funding during this pandemic in the EdTech sector, which is also a direct result of increased awareness. The EdTech sector’s growth is going to be prominent in the months to come, as students and teachers are accustomed to online learning tools. Decreased taxation can eventually help the EdTech sector to expand horizontally and revolutionize the education system.”

Scholarships for Higher Education Fund

Anoop Gautam, CEO and Co-founder, Tinker Coders

“The significance of education is very precious in the lives of people as well as countries. This is the exact motivation behind why numerous organizations have begun offering scholarships to meritorious and praiseworthy aspirants. Presently, with the assistance of study abroad scholarships accessible for essentially every course, the government shall provide more scholarship opportunities for deserving candidates that can seek help in their determinant decisions for the choice of career courses and University.”

Innovation

Anoop Gautam, CEO and Co-founder, Tinker Coders

“Education on digital platforms is not being upgraded because the government does not take the initiative to collaborate with EdTech firms and companies to seek help and keep up the pace with technology. Therefore, the government should cooperate with EdTech companies to provide technology updates to assist in better online learning and provide effective results.

The government should cooperate with EdTech companies to provide technology updates to assist in better online learning and provide effective results

“The government should set out a special fund for developing online courses. These courses can be provided to the larger public at subsidized rates. The courses can be of small duration, having full-time access to specific topics that can help students from smaller towns and cities. These courses should also be recorded and made available in regional languages, so that the growth of different socio-backed children doesn’t get hampered.”

Rajeev Tiwari, Founder of STEMROBO Technologies

“The Budget can focus on a more comprehensive and extensive way our young students in the K-12 segment get exposure to Innovation and Tinkering while in school. Therefore, by the time they graduate, we have some real innovators at our doorstep. It is high time Indian students and professionals get a boost in recognition of their innovations via Intellectual Property Rights (IPR).

There has to be a culture within the country to promote brain gain

“There has to be a culture within the country to promote brain gain. Considering this, there’s a government scheme of developing Atal Tinkering Lab through which, around 5000+ ATL Labs are already set up, but given the fact that there are 1.5 million+ schools in India, there is still a lot that needs to be done.

“India improved its ranking in the Global Innovation index to 48th in 2020 from 52nd Position in 2019. But still, there are many requirements to be done if we have to take Innovation at the grass-root level and make it significant for the masses.”

Upskilling

Rajeev Tiwari, Founder of STEMROBO Technologies

“There is a shortage of millions of teachers in our education system. At the same time, there is a need to update and redesign current teachers’ qualifications, so that they can train their aspirants for the demands of the future. Budget 2021 should also include provisions and proposals for teachers’ abilities, taking into account the digital sustainability, development, enhancement, and acceleration of the study patterns.”

Budget 2021 should also include provisions and proposals for teachers’ abilities, taking into account the digital sustainability, development, enhancement, and acceleration of the study patterns

Abhishek Gupta, Founder and CEO, Hex N Bit

“Education institutions require considerable improvement in order to scale up the employment ratio. There is considerable demand for a skilled and talented workforce. With the education budget of 2021, institutions would expect to elevate infrastructure according to the industry’s demand for the new age technology like Artificial Intelligence, cybersecurity, digital marketing, IoT, etc.

“Apart from infrastructure, the institution must set up a plan to upskill the faculty and candidate with industry connect skill development programs, which will help the education system bridge the gap between academia and industry. In the future, these steps will increase the employability ratio across various tech and non-tech sectors.”

Technology-Based Learning

Rajeev Tiwari, Founder of STEMROBO Technologies

“Until now, the emphasis in education delivery for the government sector at the K-12 level has usually been on quantity, improving education scope, and spread. However, there seems to be a growing need for Indian students to organize themselves and be serious about their companions worldwide.

With the education budget of 2021, institutions would expect to elevate infrastructure according to the industry’s demand for the new age technology like Artificial Intelligence, cybersecurity, digital marketing, IoT, etc.

“In order to achieve this, the Technology-Oriented Curriculum Delivery, based on technique, pedagogy in line with the demands of the 21st Century Skills, should be assimilated in our Education Delivery for K-12 Students and Schools. Budget 2021 should allow for improved accentuation and discretionary designation in order to resolve these concerns.”

Preferability for Online Courses

Rajeev Tiwari, Founder of STEMROBO Technologies

“Many schools and universities do not yet favour online courses. Teachers and school authorities do not advice students to opt for online courses. Hence, the majority of students are unaware of the opportunity of online learning programs and benefits.

“The government should step in and help in boosting the awareness of online learning courses and promote the online learning platforms making it sound credible for students and parents to accept. Also, students face unprecedented challenges in understanding digital infrastructure, so an awareness around the same should also be done to help society at large.”

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