New Delhi: In a bid to bridge the digital divide Save the Children and edtech company Byju’s signed a memorandum of understanding to make online learning accessible to children from all walks of life. To begin with, they will provide online tutorial for 7,500 children from economically weaker communities in three geographies of Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh & Rajasthan.
Byju’s will provide education content license free of cost to beneficiaries from class 1 to 12th for 3 years from the date of activation. Initially, the course content would be given to children whose parents have a smart phone (Android) so that children can access course via parents mobile. Together, the two organisations aim to build up on this so that access to quality education is not restricted to a few.
Speaking on the partnership, Jyoti Gandhi, Deputy Director, Individual Giving, Save the Children said, “This unprecedented situation has thrown off efforts of many years towards achieving our goals. A recent United Nations report expressed concerns over children from economically disadvantaged families struggling with access to remote learning and lack of quality education content. Through this partnership with Byju’s, we are attempting to rewrite the future for children by ensuring that they are not deprived of learning continuity. Byju’s ‘Education for All’ initiative resonates with our commitment of inclusive education for all and together we aim to reduce this urban-rural divide as much as we can.”
Further, Kamal Gaur, Deputy Director, Education added, “Quality learning continuity is important along with inclusive education, and access to this should not be undermined during emergencies. The longer children and youth are unable to attend learning facilities, the more likelihood of their failing to return to their institutions, especially girls and the most marginalized. This partnership comes as a welcome step, more so because it provides access to a standardized curriculum and is aligned with various boards in the country, thus providing equal and homogenous opportunities to all, while also taking us closer to achieving the SDG4 quality education targets and protect a generation.”
Earlier, in a press statement Byju Raveendran, founder and CEO, Byju’s said, “With ‘Education for All’, we want to ensure that all children get an equal opportunity to learn and are committed to empowering children across the country through our tech-enabled learning programmes. We are also happy to have like-minded and renowned partners on this journey as we work to make digital learning accessible by more children.”
Meanwhile the Delhi High Court has also directed private as well as government schools to provide gadgets and an internet package to poor students for online classes, saying the absence of such facilities prevent children from pursuing elementary education.
Save the Children works across 20 states of India and in 120 countries, on issues related to education, health, and protection and humanitarian/DRR needs of children, especially for those who are the most deprived and marginalized. Save the Children’s s association with India is more than 80 years old. Visit www.savethechildren.in for more information.