Rural India caught in broadband gap amid lockdown

COVID-19 Education

The pre-recorded classes aimed to bridge the gap created due to the close down of schools amid lockdown, is becoming more challenging in rural Karnataka than in the urban. 

By Sikha Jaiswal

April 16, 2020

As schools in urban areas avail the benefits of online classes, the educational options in rural areas are limited and in few cases out of the reach of students amid lockdown.  Although many schools in rural areas commenced with online and pre-recorded classes owing to the poor bandwidth connectivity, students still face the digital divide.  

Sindigi taluk, Bijapur district, faces problems due to lack of infrastructural facilities and absence of resources to study. The students have no platform where classes can be held unlike the process taking place in the urban areas.

Mansi Sharma, student, Birla Global University says, “With this current lockdown period, our institute provides us with recorded content which at one side becomes convenient for us. But we also have certain queries to make. There is no formal or visual interaction which makes it difficult for me to clear the doubts that I have after watching the video.”

“The classes are conducted online in order to prevent a break in the learning process. With disruption in network connectivity these days, students are provided with recorded lectures. Considering the remote areas of Sindigi Taluk, the students have no access to online resources and hence they miss out on many important aspects of topics,” said the principal of Primary and Secondary Government School. 

Sharing the experience of online classes, Pratibha Sharma, Teacher of Birla Global University said, “These recorded lectures fail to assess what the students have understood.. It only follows a one way communication where they fail to miss opportunities to clarify or explore the topic. Currently, zoom classes are more effective as it involves an equal participation.”

Whereas on the other hand, the Principal of Primary and Secondary Government High School says, “We do not have many basic facilities through which we can impart knowledge to the students. It is unlike the city life where they have network connectivity, but apart from the basic problems, we have limited teaching equipment due to which the process cannot go further. It is a huge loss for them and we still cannot do anything about it.”

Sourav Kumar, an educationist says, “The process of learning cannot be stopped with any kind of emergency situation falling on the line. Now that the whole nation is together under the same roof, there are many roadblocks on the way which one has to overcome. To prevent the barrier in the learning process, zoom classes are conducted so as to impart the content to the students and make it convenient for them.”


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