How Start-ups are Focusing on Rural India's Education
Entrepreneurs with their innovative ideas can fight World Bank's warning of learning crisis to India
According to the World Bank’s latest report titled World Development Report 2018: ‘Learning to Realise Education’s Promise', a warning has been issued to India for its learning crisis. Studies from the report show that in India a grade two student cannot solve a two digit subtraction problem and cannot read a word from a short text. This portrays that in India’s deepest corners lie educational issues so deep that it’s difficult to root them out.
While infrastructural problems exist, they are not the only ones that pose a threat to the Indian educational system. What do though, is the system and its operations. And that is what start-ups are focusing on – making the processes revolving around teaching and its implementation an easier task.
Entrepreneur India takes a look at the various ways in which start-ups are reaching out to the rural areas and getting involved with the schools there for better educational practises.
Making Learning Fun
One of the most important aspects that most start-ups are looking at is making the process of learning a fun activity – one that is liked by students. Creating activities out of exercises or assignments also encourages more participation from the students. The start-up Learning Delight makes learning a fun activity for students while aiming to digitize schools in rural areas. By creating stories they also ensure that children are more curious to learn.
Videos to the Rescue
Talking about interactive content, start-ups are moving from book or e-books to videos. Audio and visual content increases the curiosity of the students and also, makes way for better learning. LearnFatafat is a start-up that is converting educational content into videos for students. The startup was founded by Pankaj Chhajed in a small town called Bhusawal, thus giving him a better understanding of what the students even though it was a challenge to arrange for the amenities.
Creating Regional Content
While imparting knowledge, it is important to make it understandable to the young minds. Not just students, often for teachers in rural areas too, English is a language that they are not comfortable with. Sensing this problem, start-ups like Learning Delight have introduced regional content as well.
"The first obvious observation was that in rural areas the teachers were not very well-versed with English. Majority of the technology initiatives in this domain were in English, which created a slight gap in the system. So we made sure, that whatever we do should have the regional language component in it," said Harshal Gohil, founder of Learning Delight.
Schools on Cloud
With its name Meghshala literally translating to schools on cloud, the start-up does exactly that. They curate carefully thought out Teachkits which are basically interactive content for students – videos, exercises etc., and upload it on the cloud. Once on the cloud, these kits can be downloaded by a teacher on his/her tablet and used to teach the children. The structure of the content is designed similar to that in a textbook.
In the business of news for 5 years now. Making my way across India thanks to my career. A media graduate from Symbiosis, Pune, I have earlier worked with Deccan Chronicle (South India's leading English daily), T-Hub (India's largest incubator) and Anthill Ventures (a speed-scaling platform).
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