A recent article published by The Economic Times (October 04, 2019, 08:03 IST) talks of how edtech is helping the education system in India to get better learning outcomes.
Priyanka Sangani, the author of the article shares how start-ups are investing in technology and education to enhance the quality of teaching in the public education system in India.
The article explains how ReadToMe®, an AI-powered reading and comprehension platform is deployed in a rural classroom in Maharashtra. The author highlights some of the software’s features; such as the translation tool, which helps in translating difficult English words from the English textbook, into the primary language (in this case, Marathi) of the students.
The article then talks about the various benefits of edtech and how companies like EnglishHelper are blending technology and education to bridge the massive gap in English reading and comprehension. Sanjay Gupta, Global CEO, EnglishHelper, is quoted, “the challenge is to get exposure to language as a student. This (ReadToMe®) is a multi-sensory, repetition-based platform which won’t confuse the student”.
The article highlights how India has over a million public schools where the majority of students are enrolled, but their learning outcomes leave a lot to be desired. Annual Status of Education Report surveys indicate only 15% of Grade 5-6 students can both read and comprehend simple English sentences.
“We did a third-party evaluation and found 20-40% improvement over people who didn’t use this program. At full deployment, it is expected to benefit more than 15 million students and 200,000 teachers,” Sanjay Gupta says. The article also reports that EnglishHelper has signed an agreement with the Government of Maharashtra to roll out the ReadToMe® platform across 65,000 schools in the state. Of this, in excess of 10,000 schools have already been covered and over 13,000 teachers have been trained on how to use the software. “We would like to cover 100,000 schools by March 2020, which is not even 10% of the government schools in India,” says Sanjay Gupta.
EnglishHelper engaged in a partnership with USAID to enable the spread of the program. A key aspect is the integration of the technology with existing school curriculum, making it easier for schools to adopt the program. This automation enables the teacher to remain in charge and makes the process more effective.
The author comments upon the need to sustain such initiatives over a period of time. The importance of long term partnerships is underscored. There is an increase in government investment in modern classrooms. The key is to stay focused on tracking the impact on learning outcomes.
To know more about the ReadToMe® tools, please watch
The original article has been written by Priyanka Sangani and published by The Economic Times.