G20 delegates reach IIT Madras to deliberate on Tech in Education! Here are the takes

At IITM, the foreign delegates were welcomed in a traditional way with a ceremonial stole and music
File photo of IIT Madras | (Pic: Express)
File photo of IIT Madras | (Pic: Express)

The G20 summit is in full swing! Today, January 31, delegates arrived at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IITM) Research Park in Chennai to participate in the seminar on the Role of Digital Technology in Education. This is the first meeting of the G20 Education Working Group (G20 EWG) 2023, which will be held till February 2.

At IITM, the foreign delegates were welcomed in a traditional way with a ceremonial stole. Musical instruments were also played to receive them. During the meeting, the EWG will focus on areas to ensure inclusive, equitable, relevant and quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all, within the theme of One Earth, One Family, One Future, according to the Press Information Bureau's press release, as mentioned in a report by ANI.

Over 60 delegates from the G20 member and guest countries and invited organisations, including Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), are participating in the seminar and exhibition. From India, the meeting will be attended by academic experts, faculty and students, the  Ministry of Education (MoE), Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE), National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), University Grants Commission (UGC), and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE).

"India proposes to build on and carry forward the deliberations held under past presidencies and address the problems that are preventing the full transformational potential of education from being realised," the press release said. It further said that in line with this spirit, priority areas have been identified for deliberation that will serve to address major problems being faced by learners across the world, and help build on the strengths acquired during the past years, especially the use of technology in education, as per ANI.

The deliberation will also serve to enable a relook at the teaching and learning methods, contents, pedagogies, and assessments, so that education can be made more relevant for the capacities and skills required in the 21st century. It further encourages collaboration between people, industries, and societies in the quest for widening the horizons of knowledge and using it for the good of humankind, according to the press release.

In line with the approach, four priority issues have been identified for deliberation in the G20 EWG meeting. The priority issues will include ensuring foundational Literacy and Numeracy, building capacities, promoting lifelong learning with regard to the future of work and strengthening research and promoting innovation through collaboration and partnerships, especially in the context of blended learning. This includes making tech-enabled learning more "inclusive, qualitative and collaborative at every level," as per ANI.

India assumed the G20 Presidency from Indonesia on December 1, 2022, and convenes the G20 Leaders' Summit for the first time in the country this year. Thus, the working group aims to work together with other G20 countries to bridge gaps in quality education and skilling.

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