Online Classes impossible: 27% of students have no phone, no laptop

According to a survey conducted by NCERT, about 28 percent of a total of 35,000 students, teachers, principals, and parents cited intermittent and lack of power as a major hindrance during online classes.

The survey covered 18,188 students studying in CBSE-affiliated schools like Kendriya Vidyalayas (KVs) and Navodaya Vidyalayas (NVs).

The survey also mapped all the online subjects in which children are facing problems while studying at home.

As stated by the survey, “Mathematics contains a number of concepts, which require interaction, continuous support, monitoring from the teacher, and these aspects were lacking in the online mode of teaching,”. 

IS: The Print

“Next to mathematics, science was identified as the subject of concern since it contains several concepts and practical experiments, which could only be done in the laboratory under the supervision of the teacher,” it also states.

The survey was conducted by the NCERT, in order to “address the issues related to gaps and/or loss of learning among students, during and after the lockdown”.

To help & support students with no digital device or limited access to one, the guidelines suggest the capacity building of all the teachers.

As textbooks would be the only resource for children with no digital devices, the guidelines suggest that states and Union Territories ensure that they have the full set available at home. 

They have also suggested that supplementary learning material, such as workbooks, worksheets, projects, quizzes, and puzzles should be delivered to students at home.

“In case, the school teachers and heads are staying in the same area where many students who do not have any contact device are also living, the school can create a Shiksha Team with the help of community members. This Team can include teachers from different schools and volunteers for arranging safe classes in the community at open spaces,” the guidelines state.

In case this is not possible, the Ministry suggests that teachers form groups of students who stay in nearby locations and are of the same or different grades and empower them to help each other and do peer learning and tutoring.

To solve the e-learning issue in rural areas, providing a TV set at the community centre in these areas is another suggestion for students to study via online classes.