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Kasturba schoolgirls get smart

Education for underprivileged girls of Bokaro’s eight Kasturba Gandhi schools just received a tech edge.

Chief minister Hemant Soren and his father and JMM patriarch Shibu Soren on Tuesday launched smart classes based on K-Yan (Knowledge Yan) — an Information Communication Technology (ICT) tool developed by IL&FS Education in collaboration with Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay — for the government-run schools in Chas, Jaridih, Bermo, Nawadih, Kasmar, Petarwar, Gomia and Chandankyari.

The launch at Kasturba Gandhi School, Kasmar, was also graced by state HRD minister Geetashree Oraon.

The digital teaching-learning system, which aims to do away with blackboards in classrooms, has been implemented in classes VI to XII at a cost of Rs 60 lakh under the Integrated Action Plan and will benefit 1,748 students.

The students will be taught with the help of K-Yan, an integrated community computer that can work as a projector, television and can be also used for Internet research, thus enabling interactive learning in English as well as other languages. The process not only aims to improve the quality of education, but also address the perennial problem of shortage of teachers.

“This is a major step towards imparting quality education to the students of Kasturba Gandhi schools, who come from very poor backgrounds and not have access to technology like their counterparts in private schools. The smart classes will usher in a big revolution in the field of education for the poor,” Bokaro district education officer Rajiv Lochan told The Telegraph.

According to him, each school will get four computers and one woman teacher, who will work as resource person and will give proper training to students and teachers.

“Training is required to teach the teachers and students how to operate the system. It will continue for six months till everyone is well-versed with the system,” Lochan said.

Bokaro deputy commissioner Uma Shankar Singh said the district administration had been working very hard on the project. “We will be working actively with all Kasturba Gandhi schools. With the aid of innovative technology platforms like K-Yan, schools will definitely be able to address the issue of shortage of teachers,” he added.