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Consultative Session in IGNOU on use of ICT in Educational Systems and Policies 29 September 2011, Convention Centre, IGNOU, New Delhi, India

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A consultative session was organized in IGNOU (Indira Gandhi National Open University) on 29th September 2011. The consultative session was attended by 200 key stakeholders from education and ICT arena, representing Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), Education Departments from different state governments, IGNOU, apex institutes like CBSE, NIOS, NCERT, EdCil, multilateral agencies like UNESCO, USAID, NGOs, and Intel®.

Lighting the lamp: Dr Alka Bhargav, Dr Bob Kozma, Dr Anita Priya Darshini, Dr Latha Pillai
Lighting the lamp: Dr Alka Bhargav, Dr Bob Kozma, Dr Anita Priya Darshini, Dr Latha Pillai

Providing the foundation for introducing the Intel Policy Toolkit at a large multi-stakeholder event to gauge interest, Intel in association with IGNOU organised the ‘Consultative session on Use of ICT in Educational Systems and Policies’ on 29 September 2011.

The aim of this workshop was to explore effective means by which representatives of different sectors of education and ICT society in India can work together to foster the vision, creation, adoption and adaptation of ICT in Education policies. This topic, the workshop organizers and participants felt, was consistent with the “capacity building” emphasis that has been at the heart of ICT Policy making bodies.

The forum was designed to help participants develop a better understanding of the goals, objectives, strategies of the ICT in Education Policy formulation and integration, and how the Toolkit will contribute towards enhancing the existing ICT in education programs and policies of the country.

The presentation and experience sharing by Dr Bob Kozma, an internationally acclaimed expert in Education and ICT policy, helped to raise better awareness of the lessons learned, best practices, and innovative strategies that exist on the integrated use of ICT in education, as well as how each country can contribute towards the development of a policy at national and regional levels. Dr Kozma introduced the Intel Policy Toolkit to the multi-stakeholder group to gauge interest and collect their mind share. He left the consultative session with a number of recommendations, insights, and a number of success stories – from Jordan, Singapore, Thailand, Kenya – about how governments, along with public officials, academics, industry, civil society bodies, and researchers can work collaboratively to foster adoption of new policy frameworks and regulations that give birth to new applications of ICTs – particularly in the realm of Indian education services – and that in other ways can result in a greater diffusion of ICT capabilities.

Dr Anitha Priyadarshini, Director, DEP SSA of IGNOU gave the welcome address.

Sharing Experiences: Ashutosh Chadha (Left), Dr Bob Kozma (Right) Sharing Experiences: Ashutosh Chadha (Left), Dr Bob Kozma (Right)
Sharing Experiences: Ashutosh Chadha (Left), Dr Bob Kozma (Right)

Ashutosh Chadha, Director, Corporate Affairs Group, Intel Asia Pacific, presented Intel’s vision during the inaugural session and said, “Intel’s model of education transformation is a systemic approach that supports best practices for achieving reform, and is based on educational research. Intel combines advocacy for policy reform, curriculum, standards and assessment, sustained professional development efforts, information and communications technology, and support of research and evaluation to help countries create an effective approach to 21st century education. When all of these components are successfully integrated and implemented, real education transformation can take place”.

Speaking in the occasion, Dr Alka Bhargav, Director-School Education &, Literacy, Ministry of HRD, Govt. of India said, “ICT has been at the back of all planning of Ministry of HRD right from the beginning, since the announcement of National Policy on Education in 1986. With many development initiatives going on in the education sector, it now becomes imperative to formulate a national policy on ICTs in Education. Ministry of HRD has published the draft Policy on which massive consultations has been invited for last 2 years. Now the state governments have been urged to formulate their own roadmap.”

Dr Latha Pillai, the Pro-Vice Chancellor of IGNOU shared the views for encouraging the Policy toolkit initiative and said, “IGNOU is a part of the larger national movements, such as IT for National Mass Literacy program; part of National Knowledge Network; National Program on Technology enhanced learning. According to a recent development, any new program to be introduced in IGNOU systems, an online component of the same will be made available. We thought this an important initiative to be taken up, more importantly by the youngsters in the campus, possibly for articulating the policy.”

Dr Latha also highlighted the collaboration between IGNOU and Intel and said, “The collaboration has lead to creation of new models of teaching and learning and help upgrade the capabilities of current and future teachers. IGNOU and Intel have been associated in several platforms- to train in-service teachers through Intel Teach Program and to ensure professional development of teachers while supporting 21st century skills.”

Shweta Khurana, Manager Education, Intel South Asia gave the vote of thanks.

The event positioned Intel as a trusted advisor on transformative policies with various regions expressing interest that they would like more details on the available resources. As it is realized that it is only through the commitment and support of all stakeholders including the Ministries and Departments of Education that the goals and objectives of the Policy Toolkit could be achieved, the consultative session sought to obtain their commitment and engagement in the time to come.