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Virtual schools operationalised, Digital University being set up by India: Education Minister

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Bali/New Delhi: Union Education and Skill Development Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Thursday said India has operationalised virtual schools and is in the process of setting up Digital university as well as TV channels for education.

Delivering his opening remarks at the G-20 Education Ministers’ Meeting, Pradhan put forward interventions on the theme ‘Recovery, Re-imagine and Rebuild Stronger’.

As a row has erupted here in India after Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal claimed setting up first digital school, and was countered by National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) which said first virtual school in the country was launched last year by the Centre, Pradhan, in his speech, talked about virtual schools and universities being set up.

The Minister said over 260 TV channels dedicated to education in multiple Indian languages are also coming up to expand the realm of education and also for achieving the goal of making education equitable and accessible.

The Minister said the National Education Policy 2020, based on the foundational principles of access, equity, quality, affordability and accountability is India’s guiding light for promoting lifelong learning opportunities and achieving the shared vision of G20.

Pradhan also said India is making rapid strides towards building a more resilient and inclusive education and skilling ecosystem and realising the creative potential of each learner through the implementation of NEP 2020.

He said that India is giving special emphasis on formalizing early childhood care and education, supporting differently-abled children, boosting digital and multi-modal learning, flexible entry-exit pathways, integrating education with skills, which are keys to improve learning outcomes.

Talking about the NEP 2020, he said it has paved the way for internationalisation of education in India and India is welcoming foreign universities to set campuses in GIFT City in Ahmedabad. We are also in the process to bring policy measures for allowing foreign universities to set up their campus across India.

Pradhan underlined India’s commitment to work together with G20 member states to establish an education system where learning outcomes match 21st century skills. For education to be the driver of global growth, all efforts should be made to harness the full potential of our G20 EdWG, he added.

On the sidelines of the G20 Education Ministers’ Meeting, Pradhan held a series of bilateral meetings with Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, Second Minister for Education & Foreign Affairs, Singapore, Ahmed Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of Education and MoS for Entrepreneurship and SME, the UAE and Hamad M.H. Al Sheikh, Minister of Education in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Discussions in the bilateral meetings centered around deepening engagements in education and skill development.

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