Published: 01st February 2021
Union Budget 2021: Aligning with NEP 2020, 56 lakh school teachers to be trained digitally
A National Digital Educational Architecture (NDEAR) will be set up within the context of a Digital First Mindset where the digital architecture will support teaching and learning activities
Emphasising on the tenets of the new National Educational Policy 2020, the Union Budget 2021 presented on Monday stated that 56 lakh school teachers will be trained digitally through the National Initiative for School Heads and Teachers for Holistic Advancement (NISTHA) in 2021-22. While announcing the budget, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also added that despite the Coronavirus pandemic, the government was able to train more than 30 lakh elementary school teachers digitally, covering the 42 whole gamuts of education.
The Minister added that the National Education Policy 2020 received a great response. The budget also had a section, Annexure V, dedicated to the NEP. Speaking on what will be done to digitally train teachers across the country, the Fm said, "A National Digital Educational Architecture (NDEAR) will be set up within the context of a Digital First Mindset where the digital architecture will not only support teaching and learning activities but also educational planning, governance and administrative activities of the Centre and the States and Union Territories. It will provide a diverse education eco-system architecture for the development of digital infrastructure."
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This aligns with what the NEP says about increasing digital literacy in our country, especially among teachers. The policy document states that as soon as internet-connected smartphones or tablets will be made available in all schools, teachers will have to supervise activities such as using online apps with quizzes, competitions, assessments, and more. "Enrichment materials and online communities for shared interests will be developed. Every classroom will be developed into a smart classroom in a phased manner, for using digital pedagogy and thereby enriching the teaching-learning process, with online resources and collaborations," added the NEP.
Finally, the NEP had also said why training teachers is vital. "The quality of training, recruitment, deployment, service conditions and empowerment of teachers is not where it should be, and consequently, the quality and motivation of teachers does not reach the standards where it could be. The high respect for teachers and the high status of the teaching profession must be revived and restored for the very best to be inspired to enter the profession, for teachers to be well-motivated and empowered to innovate, and for education to therefore reach the heights and levels that are truly required to ensure the best possible future for our children and our nation," it added.