Bal Utsav, an education-based NGO, on Wednesday, announced that it will set up ‘Smart Schools’ in Hyderabad and Chennai. The NGO aims to replicate its flagship program ‘iShaala’ in these cities, starting with Mandala Praja Parishad Primary School, Nizamabad, and Government Model Higher Secondary School, Saidapet, Chennai, claims the press release by the institute.
“iShaala are model schools designed for children studying in Government schools, that are innovative, inclusive, interactive, internet-powered and inspire communities. These internet-powered classrooms will be implemented in the already existing government schools. Through iShaalas, Bal Utsav aims to bring an interactive mode of learning by partnering with leading content providers (India’s top ed-tech companies) to make age-appropriate content available, and to enable blended learning for students,” the NGO adds.
This content can be accessed seamlessly either through their personal devices (of children) or that of their parents/guardians or even Smart TVs and tabs provided to teachers and schools.
The program also consists of focussed & sustainable interventions that include four key areas-School Infrastructure (Including Smart Infrastucture such as internet connectivity, Smart TVs and Ed-tech content), WASH (Water, Sanitation, & Hygiene), Teacher development (Upskilling), and Scholarships for students.
Commenting on the foray, Ramesh Balasundaram co-founder & director of Bal Utsav said, “We are reshaping the landscape of education guided by our holistic approach of whole school revitalisation through our two core programs-Sampoorna Shaala and iShaala. In the last decade we have successfully made a dent in the public education space and brought life-changing education to children. We are looking forward to positively impacting the children studying in the government schools of Hyderabad and Chennai, ensuring they have access to quality education which is no different from a child studying in a private institution.”
He added that the cost of implementing a program like iShaala (in existing govt schools) is 1/8th of the cost that a central or a state govt, (on an average) would spend per child in a government school. “This move has brought us a step closer to our larger goal of operating in at least 1 school complex (~1000 Children) per district in India,” Ramesh said.