These are the times of the Covid 19 pandemic. But it hasn’t stopped us from gaining knowledge. Because of the current situation, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) launched a handbook- ‘Safe online learning in times of Covid- 19’. The book is aimed to “sanitise” the digital world.
The book is also aimed to ensure that all stakeholders including teachers, students, and parents are safe. Because the learning is being increasingly pushed towards digital modes. But there is also increase in internet use because of the nationwide lockdown. And this can lead to internet misuse.
“I urge you all to go through the dos and don’ts on how to use the internet safely,”
“Students and teachers, your safety is our highest priority. And hence, releasing an information booklet titled “Safe online learning in the times of COVID-19″ developed by NCERT and UNESCO of students and teachers on staying safe online.”
These were tweeted by Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister, Ramesh Pokhiryal.
WHAT IS THE BOOK ABOUT?
The book informs students about the following topics:
– What is cyber bullying?
– What are the dos and don’ts of cyber space
– Brief about the laws in Indian jurisdiction to protect students and parents in case of any mishappening online.
– Counter cyber bullying practices
– Helpline numbers to contact in case of an accident
Earlier, the CBSE had also released a cyber security handbook for students in classes 9 to 12. And while launching it the Board had said in a written statement, “Many young people feel confident in using a lot of technologies. And often turn to the internet for information,” the board noted, “but the confidence with digital technology can also be misleading.”
To get the e-book visit http://www.ncert.nic.in/
HOW MANY INDIAN CHILDREN USE THE INTERNET?
In India, an estimated 71 million children aged between 5-11 years access the Internet. But they access it on devices of their family members. And because of this, they constitute about 14 percent of the country’s active Internet user base of over 500 million. Two-thirds of internet users in India are in the age group of 12-29 year, according to the Internet and Mobile Association of India.
Because of this, NCERT, in partnership with the Cyber Peace Foundation and United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) launched e-raksha competitions. And this was aimed to spread awareness about digital citizenship among students, teachers, and parents.
NCERT also released several alternative academic calendars for students and teachers. And this was to ensure that digital learning amid the lockdown is safe, standardised, and equal across the nation.
EDUCATION IS IMPORTANT
On 20th March, 2020 a preventive measure was taken. Because of the Covid-19 Pandemic, schools, universities, training centres and other education institutions were closed across India. But this caused an unprecedented disruption of education across the world. And it also affected more than 90% of the school population.
The MHRD and State Education Departments have made concerted efforts to ensure online learning in times of Covid 19. But this exposure of students to different digital platforms has also increased their vulnerability to cyber bullying. We have already seen a few recent events related to cyber bullying and underage children. Because of this, NCERT decided to launch a handbook to ensure safe learning.
GLOBAL INSIGHT OF ONLINE LEARNING
The Coronavirus pandemic has forced not only Indian students but also students worldwide to take online classes. Teachers and students are learning to use virtual tools and platforms. And in this way, remote teaching might prove to be a success. Because of this, we could enter a whole new era of education beyond Covid-19.
However, even before the pandemic, young people suffered from a global learning crisis. This is because of the dysfunctional learning systems in classrooms. Currently, half of the young generation are on the verge of reaching adulthood without knowing the skills they require to thrive in this world.
But now everywhere, schools and colleges are jumping into the mode of online education. But some are less prepared than others. Because of students being compelled to stay away from the schools, online learning is becoming mandatory throughout the world.
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