ICT Labs and Smart Classrooms for all functional Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas

Bharat Mahan

The Department of School Education & Literacy, Ministry of Education, Government of India has decided to provide ICT (Information and Communication Technology) Labs and Smart Classrooms, as per Samagra Shiksha norms, in all functional Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (KGVB) and Hostel to empower girl students, make them digitally savvy, and enhance their learning outcomes. This will also bridge the existing digital divide. This initiative will benefit 7 lakh girls of KGBVs at an estimated cost of approximately Rs. 290 crore.

KGBVs are residential schools from Classes VI to XII for girls belonging to disadvantaged groups, such as SC, ST, OBC, Minority and Below Poverty Line (BPL). The KGBVs are set up in Educationally Backward Blocks with the objective to ensure access and quality education to these girls and to reduce gender gaps at all levels of school education. Currently, 5116 KGBVs are functional in 30 States/UTs in the country.

Providing ICT labs and Smart classrooms to girls in KGBVs is crucial as the students of KGBV come from disadvantaged backgrounds and face various obstacles in accessing education, including distance, cultural norms, and safety concerns. Access to digital literacy is vital for their personal as well as professional growth. It will also help in reducing the digital divide.

In this era of rapid development and integration of ICT with our lives and livelihood, it is crucial that students from all walks of life get the opportunity to equip themselves with modern-day technology. ICT is integrated into the school curriculum to ensure adequate experiential exposure to the students, especially those belonging to disadvantaged groups.

The provision of ICT facilities will ensure that the students of KGBV have better access to the digital platforms/resources of the Department of School Education and Literacy such as SWAYAM, SWAYAM PRABHA, National Digital Library, e-Pathshala, National Repository of Open Educational Resources, DIKSHA, etc. This will improve their learning outcomes.

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