Why School Principals and Owners should not fall in the trap of big ed-tech players such as Byju and Extramarks?

Learning Management Software

Learning Management System

Coronavirus, the dreadful virus engulfed a substantial part of the world in such a short time. This virus is probably the first to cause lockdowns in all major countries of the world. As we speak, the total infected has exceeded the 6 Lakh mark with a death toll of more than 28000, with Italy alone contributing 10000+. A very severe effect of the pandemic viral outbreak is the shutdown of schools, colleges, and educational institutes. In India, the lockdown is currently till 14th April, but who knows how long it would further extend.

But is it all bad news out there!! It seems the viral outbreak has brought in kindness from all sectors of the industry. All major Ed-Tech Startups like Byju’s, Toppr, and Unacademy have declared their resources cost-free till April. This is done to ensure that students do not suffer during such a tense situation. But is this the end of the story? Is the picture as clear as we are made to believe? Let’s explore.

True, these startups have made their content freely available to students. But will it actually benefit the students? Considering that it’s already March, most of the schools would have already completed their syllabus. Of what use would these “free-contents” even be? True, visual knowledge is always superior to contemporary teaching style, but many a time, these contents are not even in line with the actual course content. Also, it allows all students and schools to get to know these platforms, which the startups would then use as a funnel to rope in future customers (paid customers). Just think about the scenario once this viral crisis has been contained. Will all the schools and their students then be able to afford these contents when they no more remain “free-contents”?

Then comes an even more grave jeopardy for the actual school teaching system. Many school owners are now worried that once students start attending these online classes, they would never respect the school teachers the same way again. Weirdly enough, they are right. The hugely funded ed-tech giants have the best of the best teachers. It is unfair to assume that school owners in small Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities would be able to provide these facilities. So are we saying that the students should ignore the “great-contents” of these ed-tech giants and continue the still archaic school education methods? Of course not!!

Instead, the problem should be understood and referenced from a different point of view. An optimum way out of this problem is for the schools to have their own LMS (learning management software) up and running. Here, the teachers can launch their individual online courses and continue the ongoing ones. Schoollog provides a fully-functional LMS wherein the teachers can also upload resources (video, audio, image, text) which also comprises of existing video resources for teachers to refer to. The discussion panel then would be available 24×7 for the students to connect with each other and the teacher. Digital assignments doubt solving and test analysis would not only help the students but would also provide a very powerful tool for the teachers to better understand and connect with their students. Teachers can then teach very easily and without the troublesome hassle of fancy technologies. Empowering the teachers would, in turn, lead to empowering the students and eventually empowering our country. Remember, we don’t just need an army of brilliant students; we also need an army of elite teachers commanding these students.

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