Disruption wrought by COVID-19 is different. We have transitioned to a world that needs to coexist with this unpredictable threat. In these times, our schools must quickly respond to the breakdowns. However, a response is necessary, but not sufficient. We need to get ahead of the curve, we need to reimagine our schools as resilient systems.
Every child deserves education as a fundamental right in this country. But even today, we are not able to guarantee that right for all the children in India. We realise how complex it is to achieve even this basic goal of creating sustainable social change in the field of education. But we are taking what we have learnt and building on that in 2020.
In a conversation with Founding Fuel’s podcast series Virtuoso, hosted by Anna Assisi, Shankar Maruwada, CEO of EkStep Foundation traces the journey of EkStep and distills some of the key lessons for entrepreneurs and builders. As someone said, you can't put 20,000 ants together and create an elephant.
CEO and Co-founder of the EkStep Foundation, Shankar Maruwada, explains how they’re leveraging technology, big data and mobile platforms to drive forward education at scale in India. The idea was to think big: they aimed for a big goal to reach 200 million children in India and improve their access to learning opportunities.
Digital technology can rapidly transform how countries provide services such as education and health to their citizens. The public services of the future should be effective, efficient, fair, data-driven, and responsive to individual needs. And the groundwork to turn this vision into reality needs to be laid now. Data can be the key.
With the successful implementation of Aadhaar, India has been able to evolve a model of public digital infrastructure, which is different from other parts of the world. There is a large body of student population probably of around 200mn that has no access and/ or affordability for the top-end EdTech products.
“Learning will go micro and will become just-in-time expertise to provide a product or service... Credentials will become data-driven and your work will become your resume, as the world moves to data-driven micro credentials,” said Nandan Nilekani, chairman of EkStep and non-executive chairman of Infosys.
“Today, 2.5 billion people have smartphones and they have options in terms of data, apps and capabilities. This has an impact on education too,” said Nandan Nilekani Chairman, “Digital unbundling leads every sector, including education, to go from mega to micro and creates new ways to mix and match.”