Published: 13th January 2022
Here's why EdTechs of India have united to form a consortium
Additionally, EdTechs had informed the Ministry of Education (MoE), Government of India, about their move to form a consortium via a letter
On January 12, it was informed by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) that companies operating in the space of education technology have proceeded to form the India EdTech Consortium (IEC), a consortium that will be adhering to a common “code of conduct”.
Byju’s, Great Learning, Unacademy, WhiteHat Jr, upGrad, Vedantu, Careers 360, Harappa, Scalar, Simplilearn — these are the companies and start-ups that are a part of the consortium, as per a report in The Indian Express.
“Aligned with the government’s recent advisory, the IEC will ensure that every learner shall have access to quality and affordable education, which not only improves their academic performance but also makes them future-ready,” the IAMAI informed The Indian Express.
Additionally, EdTechs had informed the Ministry of Education (MoE), Government of India, about their move to form a consortium via a letter, which also mentioned that a grievance redressal mechanism, which is two-tier in nature, will be in place to ensure transparency when it comes to conducting business.
With regards to the scale and size of the ecosystem of EdTechs, the consortium pointed out that “it is critical” to adopt a framework that will ensure that the rights of both learners, as well as companies, are protected. Ethical sales practices, marketing communication, loans and refunds, fair and transparent functioning of a robust grievance redressal mechanism and a proposed independent grievance review board — these are the areas which the framework intends to cover.
It may be recalled that for some time now, there has been pressure building on EdTechs from the government. Reports of them facing harsh criticism have also emerged, wherein, they have been accused of signing up students, especially those hailing from lower-income groups, for very costly classes by deceiving parents to agree to expensive loan terms to pay for the said classes. In the light of reports such as these, Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of Education, Government of India, stated that though the government respected the firms and was in no way against their growth, this growth cannot come at the cost of exploiting parents or guardians. This he shared on January 3, when he also mentioned that the ministry, along with the law and IT ministries, were in discussions to develop a common policy for EdTechs.