Digital education was an active topic of discussion for our academicians and industry experts even before the pandemic. However, the topic hardly came out of the boardrooms to the classroom. Many took online education providers as glorified tuition teachers who can augment whatever students learn at schools. A couple of years ago, nobody had thought that online or digital education would become a primary medium of learning. Today, the ‘chalk and talk’ approach has taken the backseat, as digital classrooms are on the podium.
Although we embrace the numerous advantages of online education, a big question stands tall in front of us – is India ready for digital education? According to UNICEF, over 320 million learners in India have been adversely affected and transitioned to the e-learning industry, which comprises a network of 1.5 million schools.Annual Status of Education Report 2020 shows that only one-third of India’s schoolchildren are pursuing online education, and a smaller cohort of this 32.5% are doing live online classes. There is a digital divide in the Indian school education system. The gap is wider, and it needs immediate attention. It is an opportunity for the government and private institutions to come together and overcome the challenges.
In this special issue, we bring insights and opinions of industry experts and academic leaders on Digital Education in India: Challenges and Opportunities. We hope that our efforts help people who follow online education trends in India to get a better idea of what is happening around us.