ONLINE EDUCATION – A CHALLENGE

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Amidst the nationwide lockdown, schools and universitiesare depending on the online mode of teaching in order tomaintain continuity of education. Schools are launching apps, conducting classes over Google, Zoom or CiscoWebEx and sending interactive worksheets and videos forlearning. Even though internet based teaching is the most appropriate stop-gap arrangement now, it has highlightedthe inequalities in the education system. A majority of the student population isdependent in the pursuit of basic education. Private / Municipal / Govt. Schoolsare relying on the most basic internet app, whatsapp, to connect to theirstudents across the state and almost all school teachers have been asked tomake whatsapp group of all parents, in their respective classes and send themlessons that children can learn at home. This is the simplest tool teachers in rural and the semi urban regions like Odisha could use. Teachers are takinghelp from the Central Government digital learning portal “DIKSHA” also. Someteachers are also making use of videos for teaching concepts likephotosynthesis or geometry. Extension of the present lock down will adversely affect school education in our country. How badly has the Corona-virus outbreak impacted school education that only the school management can express their plight. Despite the first quarter has been a loss, on the behest of the HRD Ministry we designed the alternative method of learning to mitigate the loss and ensure basic learning out comes when students were confined to their homes.If lock down continues there will an adverse affect, as there is no substitute of teachers and technology cannot substitute them. Though in this crisis we are taking help of technology, at best it can be only supplementary. The Govt. haslaunched the E-Vidya initiative with each class having a dedicated channel.Similarly Confederation of Odisha Public School is also planning to launch EEducationinitiative in different TV- Channel / Web portal / You-tube livethroughout the country. We also plan to introduce shortly some more initiativeslike animation, demonstration and interactive methods nationally. This will beaimed for under privileged sections of the society. We are also building on audioprogrammes for community radio as well. Many of our teachers too are notaware of online learning, but are now making sincere effort to catch-up. During “this period, we have learned many things and we will be a future ready to faceany challenge, any time now. The online initiative has come as a major relief forparents of students of private un-aided schools. The parents should also respond in a proactive manner and pay fee of their ward irrespective of whether

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