Published: 12th August 2020
How GuruQ's tutoring in the local language syncs with the NEP's three language policy
Minal Anand speaks about her EdTech platform GuruQ that has recently introduced tutors who can converse in Tamil and Telugu to prep students for various entrance exams
We know that the Corona pandemic brought everything to a standstill especially the education sector. This is the first time that education saw such a paradigm shift, moving from offline classes to online for almost all courses. And several EdTech platforms have played a key role in conducting these online classes or providing tutors to the students in need of one. One such platform that provides tutors to students prepping for various competitive and entrance exams is GuruQ. Having been in the market for more than two years now, GuruQ has now upped their game by providing tutors who can not only communicate in English but also the respective local language. Minal Anand, Founder and CEO of GuruQ, says, "The idea behind starting online classes in vernacular languages is to see that students don't lose their level of comfort while clearing their doubts with the tutors. Currently, we have introduced only tutors who can communicate in Tamil and Telugu. Going forward, we will be including those who can communicate other regional languages, like Oriya and Kannada."
Minal, who believes that quality education must be accessible to all students, wanted to introduce this initiative even before the pandemic made it a necessity. "The thought of expanding geographically through our start-up did not occur only for the sake of this pandemic. Home tutoring has always been our focus but once this lockdown happened, the GuruQ tutors had to shift to online classes. While home tutoring students in a state like Punjab, most of the teachers communicate with their students in Punjabi and the connection becomes stronger. Now, if a student wants to attempt JEE or NEET with the help of tutors who can speak in Tamil and Telugu, they can find one on our platform," says Minal, adding, "This also provides the students with an added advantage because now, they can proudly say that they are trilingual."
The response to GuruQ's local tutoring has been overwhelming from both teachers and students. Thousands of teachers have registered themselves on the platform after being certified by GuruQ, claims Minal. "The demand for tutors has increased by 100 per cent during the pandemic. While one reason was the shift to online classes, another reason was affordability. We can't expect all students to come from an economically strong family. There are students whose parents can afford to pay only small amounts, like of `50-100. Hence, we have tutors available on GuruQ whose prices range from `50 to 2,000 because education is not just for the wealthy but for everyone."
In fact, Minal is ready to send the 40,000 tutors available on her platform for teacher training programmes in rural areas. But they expect the government to support them in this initiative. "The government must take some efforts to involve start-ups that can train teachers to provide quality education in the villages. They can provide us with funds for these kinds of campaigns. Since the NEP says that teachers must keep themselves updated in terms of technology and skills, I feel that the government must involve different stakeholders," says Minal who will be expanding her online local language tutoring in states like Karnataka, Odisha and West Bengal soon.