The Hindu Editorial Notes or Summary


QUESTION : The role of ICT(Information and Communication Tech.) in Indian Education system. Comment.




  • Digital Education


  • Recently, the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) has released guidelines on digital education titled ‘PRAGYATA’.


  • The COVID-19 pandemic has led to closure of schools and has impacted over 240 million children of the country who are enrolled in schools.
  • Extended school closures may cause loss of learning.
  • To mitigate the impact of the pandemic, schools will have to remodel and reimagine the way teaching and learning have happened so far.
  • The schools will also need to introduce a suitable method of delivering quality education through a healthy mix of schooling at home and schooling at school.
  • Online education has filled a lot of gaps during the pandemic but utmost care has to be taken while using digital technologies to educate the students.


 About PRAGYATA guidelines: 

  • Developed from the perspective of learners, with a focus on online/blended/digital education for students who are presently at home due to lockdown.
  • These guidelines on Digital/ Online Education provide a roadmap or pointers for carrying forward online education to enhance the quality of education. 
  • The guidelines will be relevant and useful for a diverse set of stakeholders including school heads, teachers, parents, teacher educators and students.
  • The guidelines stress upon the use of an alternative academic calendar of NCERT, for both, learners having access to digital devices and learners having limited or no access.

The PRAGYATA guidelines include eight steps of online/ digital learning –

  • Plan
  • Review
  • Arrange
  • Guide
  • Yak(talk)
  • Assign
  • Track
  • These steps guide the planning and implementation of digital education step by step with examples.
  • The guidelines outlines suggestions for administrators, school heads, teachers, parents and students on the following areas:
  • Need assessment
  • Concerns while planning online and digital education like duration, screen time, inclusiveness, balanced online and offline activities etc level wise
  • Modalities of intervention including resource curation, level wise delivery etc.
  • Physical, mental health and wellbeing during digital education
  • Cyber safety and ethical practices including precautions and measures for maintaining cyber safety
  • Collaboration and convergence with various initiatives


Digital Access:

  • Over 25 crore students across the country have been out of school since mid-March 2020. (owing to Covid-19 pandemic). The guidelines acknowledge that these students live in households which fall into different categories:
    • Those who have computers or smartphones with 4G internet access.
    • Those with smartphones but limited or no internet access.
    • Those with television with cable or DTH.
    • Those with a radio set or a basic mobile phone with FM radio
    • And those with no communication devices at all.


  • It emphasised the aim of digital classrooms is not to try and recreate Face-to-Face classrooms over the internet.
  • Need for Survey: It advises schools to first survey the digital infrastructure available with teachers as well as students, the levels of parental involvement before making decisions about the mode of teaching.
  • Therefore, schools must also make arrangements to reach students who do not have access to any digital infrastructure at home.
  • Duration: For kindergarten, nursery and pre-school, only 30 minutes of screen time per day for interacting with parents is recommended.
  • Schools can hold live online classes for a maximum of 1.5 hours per day for Classes 1-8, and 3 hours per day for Classes 9-12.

 Synchronous or Real-time Communication: 

  • This is real-time teaching and learning that can happen collaboratively at the same time with a group of online learners or individuals, and teachers allowing instant feedback, e.g. online teaching through video conference, audio conference, using satellite or telecommunication facilities.
  • However, schools should not assume that teaching-learning through it is the only requirement in order to support effective digital learning.


  • Asynchronous Learning: Apart from live classes, it offered a number of recommendations for asynchronous learning with tools to allow students to download lessons or listen to radio and TV programmes, communicate through Whatsapp and SMS, study on their own and undertake creative projects.


Health Issues:

  • Children exposed to digital technologies or gadgets for a longer time are prone to severe health issues.
  • Hence sitting with digital gadgets for longer hours or their excess use can be avoided by designing age appropriate schedules.
  • Cyber Safety: It also recommends ethical practices including precautions and measures for maintaining cyber safety.
  • Convergence: It envisages convergence with the government initiatives on digital education e.g. SWAYAM Prabha, SWAYAM, DIKSHA and Radio Vahini, Shiksha Vaani.




  • The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) is an autonomous organisation of the Government of India which was established in 1961 as a literary, scientific and charitable Society under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.
  • It aims at reforming the school education system through research, training, policy formulation and curriculum development.
  • Headquarters: New Delhi



Class Recommendation

  • Pre Primary- Not more than 30 minutes.
  • Classes 1 to 12 Recommended to adopt/adapt the alternative academic calendar of NCERT
  • Classes 1 to 8 Not more than two sessions of 30-45 minutes each on the days
  • Classes 9 to 12 Not more than four sessions of 30-45 minutes each on the days


Guidelines for parents ;

  • For parents, the guideline helps to understand the need for physical, mental health and wellbeing along with the cyber safety measures for children at home.
  • Guidelines for physical health and mental wellness is stressed so that children do not get overly stretched or stressed, or get affected owing to prolonged use of digital devices.
  • Also, it provides sufficient Dos and Don’ts regarding ergonomics and cyber safety.


  • E-learning has become an education equalizer but it’s still not a replacement for the traditional classroom. Sure, the technology is advancing, but it’s not flawless. Just like any new, burgeoning innovation, e-learning faces its own challenges. And direct human engagement is a crucial component of education.


Ques.  Mark the  right option about PRAGAYATA guidelines –

  1. a) Plan
  2. b) Review
  3. c) Appreciate
  4. d) Motivation


1) A,b,c

2) B,c, d 

3) All the correct 

4) A and B



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