Kerala Announces Massive ICT Roll-Out for Primary Classes

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala yesterday announced the holistic intervention of Information and Communication Technology-assisted (ICT) education to its 9,279 schools, from Class 1 to 7 in the State, through IT@School Project in the coming academic year.

This was announced by Prof. C. Raveendranath, Minister for Education at a function held here yesterday.

Kerala, being a role-model in ICT enabled education, has started IT education under IT@School Project for High School classes (Std 8 to 10) in early 2005.

Now it has been scaled up to the Lower Primary and Upper Primary sections, thus providing ICT-enabled education right through Std 1 to 12.

The Minister launched e @ Vidhya, the new ICT textbook for Std 5 to 7 and Operating System & Resource DVD for primary schools, developed by IT@School.

The declaration on completion of broadband internet connectivity to all these schools was also held.

“The scaling up of ICT-enabled education in UP classrooms is a major step in achieving the educational goal of the government with respect to its General Education Rejuvenation Mission. The detailed ICT school survey for the LP and UP classes would commence in June and the detailed project report would be prepared by IT@School in July. Computer labs and Smart Classrooms would be set-up in all LP and UP schools,” Prof. C. Raveendranath said.

“IT@School has already imparted specific ICT training for 70,602l LP and UP teachers in the State and we have roped in the BSNL for providing broadband connectivity to all LP and UP schools and as on date as many as 8,918 LP and UP schools (97 per cent) schools have been fully covered,” said K. Anvar Sadath, Executive Director of IT@school project.

“ IT@School has implemented the ICT-enabled education rather than IT Education in High School section in 2009. Now, we are scaling up the same in LP and UP section after elaborate preparations, including content development, teachers trainings and operating systems etc.,” he  added.

All contents in the new ICT textbook, “e@Vidhya,” are prepared entirely using Free and Open Source Software. In addition to the Malayalam version, the new ICT textbook is also made available in English, Tamil and Kannada languages.

Each school would also be provided with a DVD that contains the software packages which would assist in learning the ICT enabled contents in the textbook.

“e @ Vidhya” contains activities based on language, basics of Science, Social Studies and Mathematics in a total of nine chapters.

Sub activities include picturisation of poem (K-Paint software), view on eclipses and stars (Stellarium), introduction to fission (J-Fraction lab, fraction matcher), preparing notice and posters (Libre Office writer), Mathematical flower decoration (Geogebra), locating and identifying States and capitals in the map (K-Geography), dimension specific activities to learn area and volume (Area builder), audio editing tools such as Odacity, educational applications such as Turtle Art, Web browser, and Libre Office Impress etc.