Education is changing due to the impacts of the Covid-19 lockdowns across the world. Traditional structures of education are being disrupted on a massive scale. And, changes are happening across the board, from pre-primary kindergartens till Universities. It is an exciting time for the tech firms that have been waiting on the sidelines to capture a large part of the education market. There is bad news as well due to the massive inequalities that put many children at the risk of having to end their education and do manual labour.
Where previously students were given very limited access to mobile phones and laptops, the current state of education has made it mandatory for parents to provide a device to their wards. No longer are privacy concerns being stated nor are screen times getting limited. It has become a free run of technology in the larger goal of gaining knowledge.
Online learning has always been seen with a skeptical eye by traditional educationists, citing concerns of inadequate interactions and monitoring of students. But the current scenario has put these concerns on the back burner. Schools are desperate to get classes happening and avoid the possibility of their institutions getting closed or being paid less fees by parents.
Parents are keen to ensure that students meet the necessary knowledge requirements in order to pass the exams when they happen, hoping that the crisis due to Covid-19 will be over by then. They are unwilling to provide the leeway of letting their wards catch up with the lost days of learning later when schools are back to normal. The uncertainty surrounding the Covid-19 crisis is another reason why parents and schools are not putting any uncertainty in the continuation of education, however limited it may be.
Though there are possibilities that education find a different paradigm and voice. amidst the changes happening, there is very little work being done to change the nature of education from a test-oriented, standardized, one-size-fits-all approach to a personalized, skill-based, child-centric approach.