Press Release Details
A special meeting was held at Samman Bhawan today to discuss and deliberate on the current education situation and future road map of digital education in the State
Information & Public Relations Department
(Press release from CMO)
Gangtok July 28: A special meeting was held at Samman Bhawan today to discuss and deliberate on the current education situation and future road map of digital education in the State. Due to the global pandemic, education and students right to education have been hit hard and to combat the situation, digital and online classes are the only option in the current situation.
During the meeting, the Chief Secretary Shri S.C. Gupta briefed the august gathering on the agenda of the meeting and the views and suggestions of the department on the issues.
The Hon’ble Chief Minister welcomed everyone on behalf of the Government and stated that the State Government is utilising the I.T sector to its optimum level, which had been dormant for all these years. He stressed on the fact that during the pandemic, Information Technology and digital connectivity have played an effective and a monumental role and this technology boon could be used as a medium to move forward in this path and make the best use of it. He also reiterated that Sikkim has been granted an Independent BSNL Administrative Control Centre for the State which will improve connectivity and help in achieving e-Governance by 2022, as proposed by the Central Government. He focussed on moving forward with time and adapting to technological advancement for overall development.
He also proposed that the teachers who are currently off duty due to the COVID-19 situation could be part of the monitoring team in GPUs for ensuring that the asymptomatic cases are following the necessary protocols and guidelines. Their noble services could be utilized to raise awareness, educate, inform and regulate the patients.
However, they should be well briefed before sending them for the fieldwork. This proposal was appreciated by the department who will be preparing a list of teachers and also prepare the Standard Operating Procedure(SOP). The Hon'ble Chief Minister also suggested utilising the services of OFOJ employees for assisting the teachers.
The Secretary, Education Department Shri Anil Raj Rai communicated that the major problem currently faced by the department is connectivity, especially in the shadow areas which mostly fall under difficult terrain. To tackle the situation, currently, they are providing pre-recorded contents to students who do not have access to proper internet connectivity. He also informed that they are using various applications and broadcasters to conduct these classes. He also emphasized on the departments plan to initiate counselling for parents and ask their opinion regarding the reopening of schools.
The Chief Secretary stated that the connectivity issue cannot be solved instantly and we need to make the best use of the facilities we have at our disposal. He insisted on uniformly upgrading the facilities and use YouTube and other similar platforms for these purposes.
The Hon’ble Chief Minister emphasized on turning Sikkim into an education HUB to attract students from various states and abroad. He stated that we should move towards the unconventional technique of education and more research-based methods in Soreng Science College and turn it into a centre for excellence by including subjects like Environmental science, climate change, Himalayan studies centre where traditional practices of Himalayan people and their livelihood opportunities will also be included. He directed the department to set up a team to prepare a Standard Operating Procedure(SOP) in advance to monitor students, teachers and lecturers returning to the state in case of commencement of schools and colleges in the near future.
He also added that the maintenance of schools should be done regularly and should not be ignored because of the lockdown. He directed the education department to hold a meeting with the I.T.department to sort out issues about digital education and find a middle path which will be feasible looking at the current scenario.
The meeting was also attended by Hon'ble Minister, Education, Shri K. N. Lepcha and other officers of the concerned department.