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Parents want schools reopened as online classes not working out — Azim Premji University study

Study by Bengaluru-based Azim Premji University finds that issues of access as well as learning difficulties with online mode is hampering the education of many students.

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New Delhi: Online education is not working out for children in public schools and parents are eager to send them back to school once it reopens, a study by Bengaluru-based Azim Premji University across five states showed.

Titled Myths of Online Education, the study posed questions to 1,522 parents and 398 teachers across Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Karnataka and Chhattisgarh.

“Teachers in the implementing states reported that out of 30,511 children who attended regular classes, only 11,474 were actually attending online classes. On an average, 42 percent of children were attending online classes across the schools surveyed,” said the study released Monday.

“This means that around 60 percent of children cannot access online learning opportunities,” it added.

An overwhelming majority of the teachers talked about the inadequacy of delivering meaningful education through the online mode, said the study. More than 80 per cent of them expressed the impossibility of maintaining an emotional connect with children and over 90 per cent said no meaningful assessment of children’s learning was possible in online classes.

Similarly, about 70 per cent parents were dissatisfied with online classes and deemed them ineffective for children.

Also read: January 2021 JEE Mains could be delayed due to Covid situation, but no plans to cancel

Access issues

The study also found that almost 60 per cent children were unable to access online learning opportunities.

“Reasons for this varied from absence of a smartphone, multiple siblings sharing a smartphone, difficulty in using the Apps for online learning, etc,” the study said.

The issue is further exacerbated for children with disabilities, it added. “Among teachers of children with disabilities in their regular classes, more than 90 percent found them unable to participate in online classes.”

Reopen schools, say parents

The study also aimed to understand parents’ attitude and concerns towards interrupted learning caused due to the pandemic. This revealed that parents overwhelmingly supported reopening of schools with the necessary safety protocols.

“Almost 90 percent of the parents were willing to send their children to school with necessary health safeguards. Close to 65 percent were of the opinion that schools, when they reopen, would not pose a problem for their children’s health,” the study said.

“This study, overall, is in alignment with other such recent studies and underscores the severe problems that online learning solutions generate for the public school children across states,” it added.

The study called for urgently reopening schools in a phased manner as online education is ineffective.

“The study, therefore, points to the urgent need to reopen schools in a phased manner with adequate provisions for the health and safety of both children and teachers in the public school system. It also suggests the need to adopt context-based, direct teaching-learning solutions with the physical presences of teachers during the transition period of the reopening of public schools,” it added.

Also read: 1 in 10 rural households got phone to back child’s study during lockdown, says ASER report


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  1. Not all parents are of the same opinion. Only if there is a wall, can you write on the wall..if you eliminate the wall itself, where will you write.. only parents who wanna risk lives of children or consider children a burden and privacy obstructor will send kids to schools before any guaranteed vaccine is available to fight the virus. For gaining knowledge , you take the risk and send kids to school and if they contract virus and face casualties, not at all a sensible thought.

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