ICT Information and Communication Technology School Scheme

The ICT Information and Communication Technology School Scheme was launched in December 2004 to provide opportunities to secondary stage students to mainly build their capacity on ICT skills and make them learn through the computer-aided learning process.

The Scheme is a major catalyst to bridge the digital divide amongst students of various socio-economic and other geographical barriers.

The Scheme provides support to States/Union Territories to establish enabling ICT infrastructure in Government and Government aided secondary and higher secondary schools.

CategorySchool Education
Department Department of School Education and Literacy
Ministry of Human Resource Development
Government of India
Location All over India
Subject ICT Information and Communication Technology School Scheme
Date of Launched December 2014
ICT Information and Communication Technology School Scheme

It also aims to set up Smart schools in KVs and Navodaya Vidyalayas which are pace-setting institutions of the Government of India to act as “Technology Demonstrators” and to lead in propagating ICT skills among students of neighbourhood schools.

What is ICT?
ICTs stand for Information and Communication Technologies and are defined, as a “diverse set of technological tools and resources used to communicate, and to create, disseminate, store, and manage information.”

These technologies include computers, the Internet, broadcasting technologies (radio and television), and telephony.

About:
The National Policy on Education 1986, as modified in 1992, stressed upon employing educational technology to improve the quality of education. The policy statement led to two major centrally sponsored schemes, namely, Educational Technology (ET) and Computer Literacy and Studies in Schools (CLASS) paving the way for a more comprehensive centrally sponsored scheme – Information and Communication Technology @ Schools in 2004. Educational technology also found a significant place in another scheme on the up-gradation of science education.

The significant role of ICT in school education been highlighted in the National Curriculum Framework 2005 (NCF) 2005.

Use of ICT for quality improvement also figures in the Government of India’s flagship programme on education, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA). Again, ICT figured comprehensively in the norm of schooling recommended by the Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE), in its report on Universal Secondary Education, in 2005.

With the convergence of technologies, it has become imperative to take a comprehensive look at all possible information and communication technologies for improving school education in the country. The comprehensive choice of ICT for the holistic development of education can be built only on sound policy.

The initiative of ICT Policy in School Education is inspired by the tremendous potential of ICT for enhancing outreach and improving the quality of education. This policy endeavours to provide guidelines to assist the States in optimizing the use of ICT in school education within a national policy framework.

Vision:
The ICT Policy in School Education aims at preparing youth to participate creatively in the establishment, sustenance and growth of a knowledge society leading to the all-round socio-economic development of the nation and global competitiveness.

Mission:
Devise, catalyse, support and sustain ICT and ICT enabled activities and processes in order to improve access, quality and efficiency in the school system

Policy Goals:

  • To achieve the above, the ICT Policy in School Education will endeavour to Create
  • an environment in the states to develop ICT knowledgeable community
  • an ICT literate community who can deploy, utilise, benefit from ICT and contribute to nation-building
  • an environment of collaboration, cooperation and sharing, conducive to the creation of a demand for optimal utilisation of and optimum returns on the potentials of ICT in education Promote
  • universal, equitable, open and free access to state of the art ICT and ICT enabled tools and resources to all students and teachers
  • development of local and localised quality content and enable students and teachers to partner in the development and critical use of shared digital resources
  • development of professional networks of teachers, resource persons and schools to catalyse and support resource sharing, up-gradation, and continuing education of teachers; guidance, counselling and academic support to students; and resource sharing, management and networking of school managers and administrators, resulting in improved efficiencies in the schooling process
  • research, evaluation and experimentation in ICT tools and ICT enabled practices in order to inform, guide and critically utilise the potentials of ICT in school education Motivate and enable
  • wider participation of all sections of society in strengthening the school education process through appropriate utilisation of ICT

BACKGROUND:
The scheme of Educational Technology (ET) was started in 1972 during the IV Plan. Under the scheme, 100% assistance was given to 6 State Institutes of Educational Technology (SIET) and the States/UTs were assisted for procurement of radio cum cassette players and colour TVs.

Further, in recognition of the importance of the role of ICT in education, the Computer Literacy and Studies in Schools (CLASS) Project was introduced as a pilot project in 1984-85 with the use of BBC micros.

The project was adopted as a Centrally Sponsored Scheme during the 8th Plan (1993-98) and its scope was widened to provide financial grants to educational institutions and also to cover new Government and Government aided secondary and higher secondary schools. The use and supply of software were limited with coverage confined only to higher secondary Schools.

The National Task Force on Information Technology and Software Development (IT Task Force), constituted by the Prime Minister in July 1998 made specific recommendations on introduction of IT in the education sector including schools for making computers accessible through the VidyarthiComputer Scheme, Shikshak Computer Scheme and School Computer Schemes. Smart Schools were recommended on a pilot basis in each State for demonstration purposes.

It was also stipulated that 1 to 3% of the total budget was to be spent on the provision of computers to all educational Institutions up to Secondary and Higher Secondary level during the next five years. Based on the experience gained so far, a need for a revision of the scheme of ICT @ Schools was felt on the following grounds.

Expansion with emphasis on quality and equity: A need was felt to expand the outreach of the scheme to cover all Government and Government aided secondary and higher secondary schools in the country with emphasis on educationally backward blocks and areas Revised with a concentration of SC, ST, minority and weaker sections. Along with that, there is a need for ensuring a dependable power supply where the electricity supply is erratic and internet connectivity, including broadband connection.

  1. Demonstration effect: There is a need to set up smart schools at the district level to serve as demonstration models for neighbouring schools.
  2. Teacher engagement and better in-service and pre-service training: Since ICT education will be imparted to all secondary and higher secondary students, an exclusive ICT teacher is required for each school. Similarly, there is a need for pre-service as well as in-service training of all teachers in the effective use of ICT in teaching and learning process.
  3. Development of e-content: There is also a need to develop and use appropriate e-content to enhance the comprehension levels of children in various subjects.
  4. A strong mechanism for monitoring and management needs to be set in place at all levels for ensuring optimal delivery of set targets.
  5. The Scheme envisages that the School Management Committee, Parents Teachers Association and local bodies would be involved in the programme management along with with the setting up of an online web-based portal for real-time monitoring and transparency. In addition, independent monitoring and evaluation are envisaged.
  6. Accordingly, the Scheme has been revised, with the approval of Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 9th January 2010, for implementation during the remaining period of 11th Plan. The scheme continues in the 12th Plan period.

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