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COVID-19 has been pushing EdTech towards the future at a faster rate. However, rural sections are yet to feel a part of this push. Keeping this in mind, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman´s Union Budget for 2022, has introduced schemes and proposed launches to bring the youth of India up to date.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • One class One TV channel program to be expanded to 200 TV channels
  • Launch of Digital DESH e-portal and virtual labs and skilling e-labs to promote critical thinking skills and stimulated learning environment
  • A Digital University to be established with world class quality universal education
  • High quality e-content to be delivered through Digital Teachers
  • Expanding the PM eVidya scheme from 12 to 200 channels

The Tech Panda gathered the reactions, both positive and negative, of EdTech experts to find out how the budget will impact the ecosystem.


Read more: Budget 2022 reaction: Electric Vehicle


 Swapnil Dharmadhikari, Director & Founder, Splashgain Technology Solutions Pvt. Ltd.

Expanding the PM eVidya scheme from 12 to 200 channels will bring in a regional inclusion for students across the country, and the move is applaud-worthy

“Due to the unprecedented contractions put forth by the Covid-19 crisis, the schools were closed, and the children, particularly in the rural areas, scheduled tribes and other weaker sections have lost two years of education. FM Shrimati Nirmala Sitharaman mentioned the launch of the Digital DESH e-portal for the skilling, upskilling & reskilling of our youth. This will strengthen access to quality education for the underserved and economically weaker sections of our society.

“FM Shrimati Nirmala Sitharaman also mentioned a Digital University being developed to provide students with world-class quality education with ISTE Standards. This will help students to learn by being in comfort, from anywhere. This is an encouraging first step towards the future of this country, with initiatives towards the digitalization of Indian educational institutions. Expanding the PM eVidya scheme from 12 to 200 channels will bring in a regional inclusion for students across the country, and the move is applaud-worthy.

“We at Splashgain are genuinely excited to continue transforming our reputed educational institutions to become new-age digital education hubs that are in step with global trends and are enabling a future-ready learning environment.”

Sarvagya Mishra, Co-founder & Director, SuperBot (PinnacleWorks)

This also opens prospects for new age tech startups to collaborate and contribute in establishing a robust digital infrastructure along with the government

“The government has insisted on the development of digital infrastructure. Especially, in the education sector, the government has realised the need for a nationwide eVidya programme and digital university. This also opens prospects for new age tech startups to collaborate and contribute in establishing a robust digital infrastructure along with the government. New businesses have been leveraging technologies like AI, machine learning and data analytics, and have presented successful implications which might come handy in enabling the national education projects.”

Karanvir Singh, Founder & CEO, Pariksha

The expansion of ‘One Class One TV Channel’ to provide supplementary education in regional languages for classes 1-12 will boost the early and secondary education in the country

“Digital education became the familiar way of new-age learning following the lockdown. The new trend has been well accepted by the government as the way forward for upskilling, widening access to education, and strengthening the higher education system in the country.

“Additionally, the budget too circumscribed the fact that in a diverse nation like India, education can only be delivered by understanding the vernacular requirements of every region. The expansion of ‘One Class One TV Channel’ to provide supplementary education in regional languages for classes 1-12 will boost the early and secondary education in the country. And the proposed launch of the digital university will simultaneously cater to the requirements of higher education. Thus, the budget has served, end-to-end, to raise the education system in the country in a holistic manner.”

Ankit Maggu, Co-founder, Geekster

The launch of digital university is a great step, as it will increase the penetration of quality education even in the remotest areas at affordable price points

“The biggest challenge that our youth face is the lack of in-demand skills, the reason for this is that our higher education has not been able to adapt as per the changing Industry requirements. The new age entrepreneurs are trying to address this gap through different models making skill based education accessible to the masses but a lot more needs to be done. The launch of digital university is a great step, as it will increase the penetration of quality education even in the remotest areas at affordable price points.

“Additionally, Digital DESH e-portal will help further refine the skills of the youth making them more employable and will reduce the skill gap, benefiting both – jobseekers, and employers. ”

Piyush Bhartiya, Co-founder & CEO, AdmitKard

Stressing on higher education will reflect in the next generation’s culture and quality of skill-set in the employment market

“The budget has been very much in line with the latest trends and changing paradigm in the education system. We are glad that the government is promoting digital education in India. The budget mentioned the launch of a nationwide digital university, which might be the answer to the long prevailing gaps in the higher education system. What initially started as a result of the global lockdown, has now been acknowledged as the probable solution to the difficulty of accessing higher education in the country where 65% of the population resides in the rural region. Simultaneously, stressing on higher education will reflect in the next generation’s culture and quality of skill-set in the employment market.”

Himanshu Tyagi, CEO & Founder, Digikull

Following the lockdown, adoption of digital medium increased. The budget has leveraged this shift in behaviour to add to the ultimate aim of digital India

“The long prevailing skill gap in the market was a challenge for both- the recruiters, and youth of the nation too. With the launch of Digital DESH e-portal we can expect to fill in this gap to a certain extent. The interesting part is, that following the lockdown, adoption of digital medium had increased. The budget has leveraged this shift in behaviour to add to the ultimate aim of digital India. If the execution is right, we can gradually expect digital learning to become the primary education system 5 years down the line.”

Rishabh Khanna, Cognitive Scientist, Co-founder, Suraasa

Skilling and upskilling have been the talk of the EdTech town for the longest time (for all the right reasons) and it’s great to see the government working towards that too

“Accessibility to quality learning is a huge challenge for the country, especially in the digital mode of delivery. I think that the Digital University and ‘One Class One TV Channel’ are very thought through ideas to ensure that no children are left behind due to language, resource, or digital barriers.

“Skilling and upskilling have been the talk of the EdTech town for the longest time (for all the right reasons) and it’s great to see the government working towards that too. The FM also talked about teachers being trained to be able to deliver quality learning outcomes to students. I think that is one of the most important components of the education system since a trained teacher has the potential to transform lives of many children and create impact at scale. I am excited to witness the implementation of proposed initiatives and how they impact education across the country.”

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