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Astrid Dufborg, Executive Director, Global e-Schools Initiatives (GeSCI), Dublin, Ireland discussed about GeSCI’s useful collaborations with a number of countries, civil society organisations, private sector partners, international organisations. Citing a recent study in Scotland, that shows no significant change and improvement resulted by the students, despite enormous investment on providing computers to the schools. ‘There is a need for setting priorities for revisiting the pedagogy, curriculum, content, training of teachers, setting up the structures for actually making full use in the education system of the opportunities that ICTs provide. I think that India has enormous potential of actually taking the lead world-wide when it comes to effectively showing what can be done by the ICTs in the area of education, and for the purpose of improving lives of the people, empowering communities and improving the employability of youth’, she said. Jainder Singh, Secretary, Department of IT, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, Government of India, discussed about the immense potential of the National e-Governance Plan (NeGP ) as well as the CSC scheme, formulated by the government of India, with the vision to make services available at the ‘door-step’ of the citizens at affordable costs. Isabel Guerrero, Country Director – India, World Bank, while giving her inaugural address said, in the huge transformation potential of ICT, the World Bank is an enthusiastic supporter of the government of India, in using ICT as a strategic tool for development. Expecting some deliberations to be made, she posed three very vital questions to the conference forum – (1)What needs to be done to ensure that ICT initiatives are scaled up and implemented in financially sustainable projects? (2)How can India build on the success of ICT to develop e-Government systems, which provide tangible day-to-day solutions to the urban and the rural poor? (3)What are the opportunities for private sectors and civil society, to work with the government to create and expand use of ICT and create a culture of e-Government? Michael Clarke, Director of IDRC’s Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D) programme area remarked on how India plays a big role in contributing to the world’s intellectual resources, by demonstrating the advancements with its own ICT agenda. Digital Learning | Vol 3 Issue 9 September 2007

Dato Dr. Halim Man, Secretary General, Ministry of Energy, Water and Communications, Malaysia, delivered the guest country lecture. Highlighting the transnational areas and scope for collaboration, Dr Man said, ‘The rural communities of India, China, Malaysia, Indonesia, have similar issues and challenges and require similar assistance. Thus we could collaborate to provide the solutions that they require in a more efficient manner.’ In e-Education, Malaysia has connected all 10,000 primary and secondary schools, through broadband. Life-long education has emerged a new paradigm. It has a distance education system, called the network multi-media education system, questions in ICTs and engineering upto masters level are transmitted through satellites, to remote sites, in real time. This is another area, where Dr Man sees opportunities of collaboration and cooperation. The grand inauguration of eINDIA2007 was followed by the inauguration of the eIndia2007 exhibition.

Day I Sessions The show of Digital Learning began with Envisioning e-Learning by some eminent representatives from this sector both from India and outside, including Shantanu Prakash, CEO, Educomp Solutions, Dr. Subarna Shakya, Executive Director, National Information Technology Center, Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology, Government of Nepal, Chris Thatcher, Director, SE Asia Educational Development, Cambridge Education, Thailand, and Dr R. Sreedher, Director, Commonwealth Educational Media Centre for Asia, Commonwealth of Learning. In the visions of Shantanu Prakash, e-Learning is here to stay. ‘But while e-Learning maybe all around us, every person specially in the Indian context is not a participant in the e-Learning revolution. That is where we see one of the critical challenges’, he said, while presenting his keynote address in this session. Three key areas that Shantanu discussed from a pedagogical perspective, and these are Instructional design, the socio-constructivist ideology or paradigm and cognition. ‘We believe that e-Learning has the oppurtunity to transform each of these so called pillars on which the modern education system rests today.’ Educomp’s smart class have a million students in India today who are experiencing a different kind of classroom, where while the teacher is teaching,

'The challenge ahead is to provide universal access, equity and quality at the secondary stage. For this, a major programme to universalise secondary education is on the anvil, which will take the main thrust during the 11th plan period. While the emphasis has been on computer literacy programme, the advantage now is realised for development of e-content in computeraided learning activities. We are now looking towards creating an National ICT policy in school education. During the coming years we have the formidable task of providing literacy to more than 300 million people.’ Champak Chatterjee Secretary, Department of Secondary Education Ministyr of HRD, Government of India

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Consolidating ICT and Education : September 2007 Issue  

[www.digitallearning.in] With the aim of promoting and aiding the use of ICT in education, Digital Learning education magazine focuses on th...

Consolidating ICT and Education : September 2007 Issue  

[www.digitallearning.in] With the aim of promoting and aiding the use of ICT in education, Digital Learning education magazine focuses on th...

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