India. The education industry was hit hard and the impact of the pandemic will have lasting effects. However, Covid-19 had also brought some optimistic deviations as well.
An Eighth-grade student, Ananya Sharma used to love going to school but after the pandemic, she got worried about her studies which often makes her feel nervous. Taking distant education classes eased her nervousness to some extent.
So, when her school decided to start online classes last year during the pandemic Ananya enjoyed it. Now the 14-year-old girl is enjoying the new era of schooling for the first time shared her mother Anuradha Sharma.
“Being a parent, we never wanted the studies to get hampered due to any reason but the virus has changed the whole situation altogether. Thanks to the technology which saved the future of our children,” added Mrs. Sharma.
On the other hand, a few parents think online schools come with risks. It could normalize remote learning methods that have had poor results for many students.
Teachers in dilemma as schools continue online classes
During the pandemic, schools have decided to associate with online apps to deliver online classes in this academic year. A majority of private teachers have lost their jobs. Schools, specifically the budgeted ones, are using services of just 20-30% of teachers run online classes.
Specifying the problems associated with online classes Prabhjot Kaur, a language expert and teacher, shared “Language classes are a secondary choice for students and with Covid, kids are spending more time with their regular online classes and there is a decline in students’ opting for online classes for additional courses like foreign languages.”
Many schools said they only require 20-30 percent of teachers to run the school and they have been using online apps to communicate knowledge to students. It has also been seen that the schools do not have funds to pay salaries, which made the administration opt for online apps.
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Prabhjot said she is waiting for an alternative option to earn now. “The situation will endure unless schools start assigning classes to teachers in full capacity for leading online classes“.
The Scenario of Online Education after Pandemic
According to the latest report by UNESCO, over 91% of the world’s student population has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Transcontinental Times recently spoke to the experts on the online education scenario and its future aspects.
Sanjay Tyagi Chairman St. Froebel School Delhi “The COVID 19 Pandemic and consecutive lockdowns have affected the education system throughout the world. Today the entire education system has undergone a transformation that will go on long after the virus threat subsides. The changes the coronavirus has caused might be here to stay. With this sudden shift away from the classroom in many parts of the globe the question often comes to our mind is whether the adoption of online learning will continue to persist post-pandemic and how such a shift would affect the world of education. Well, the future is optimistic and hopeful”
Dr.Christopher Abraham, CEO and Head, Dubai Campus, SP Jain School of Global Management stated “During this pandemic which had a catastrophic impact on almost every industry including education, the human ingenuity to address such sudden and uncertain circumstances was put to the ultimate test. Under these circumstances, the evolution and growth of online learning evolved as the next big transformation in education. Contemporary research indicates that online learning has gained increased popularity during the pandemic due to the normalization of virtual learning and there is an increase in enrolments”
Mr. Nick NOAKES, Director of Center of Education Innovation, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology said “I think blended and hybrid courses will stay through a delivery mix of synchronous and asynchronous, or online and on-ground formats. While the pandemic may have brought about progress in online education, such gains are not guaranteed. The advantages and benefits offered by effective instructional innovations – new approaches to learning experience design, can only be fully realised and sustained if they are harnessed and institutionalised. This will require an institutional-level approach that turns special projects into accepted components of an institutional practice”
According to Monica Malhotra Kandhari, MD, MBD group “Learning by screen or remote learning will continue to play a major role even after schools are able to re-open post the pandemic. For more than a year now, online classes and remote learning have been the medium through which learning is delivered to students. With the situation slowly inching towards normalcy, one thing is clear: remote learning is here to stay and with the imposed acceleration in adoption it will play a bigger role in the education ecosystem. The use of digital tools and virtual learning can add much to the current classroom-based learning system and will complement classroom-based teaching and learning”
Mr. Atul Temurnikar, Co-Founder & Chairman, Global Indian International School said “COVID-19 shook the entire educational machinery, with everyone from schools to colleges and beyond moving from physical to virtual spaces. This transition took some time but now, after one and half years, we are able to see the pros more clearly than the cons. Everything, from syllabus creation to curriculum assimilation to report keeping and compilation, went online.”
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