NEAT Will be a Game-Changer in Bridging the Digital Divide, says Dharmendra Pradhan

NEAT will be a game changer in bridging the digital divide, says Dharmendra Pradhan

Union education minister and skill development minister Dharmendra Pradhan have launched ed-tech National Educational Alliance for Technology (NEAT) 3.0 – a single platform to provide the best-developed tech solutions and courses to students of the country.

At the NEAT 3.0 launch event on January 3, the minister also unveiled technical books in regional languages prescribed by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE). The Union ministry of education has announced NEAT 3.0 as a public-private partnership model between government agency AICTE and Education Technology companies.

Speaking at the launch, Pradhan said NEAT will be a game-changer in bridging the digital divide, especially among economically disadvantaged students, while also fulfilling the knowledge-based requirement of India and the world. The minister informed that 58 global and Indian ed-tech startups are onboard for the NEAT platform, and are offering 100 courses and e-resources for bettering learning outcomes, developing employable skills, and overcoming learning loss. He hoped that the e-content, resources, and digital frameworks like NEAT are a step in the right direction in minimizing learning loss.

Pradhan encouraged AICTE to integrate courses in NEAT with the Skill India Mission to tap the opportunities in emerging areas of skill, boost employability and prepare our youth for the future. He urged AICTE and ed-tech companies to offer e-resources at the least possible cost.

Pradhan complimented the global ed-tech companies and Indian startups who are a part of NEAT 3.0, saying that all edtechs are welcome to collaborate in making education accessible and affordable. However, ed-techs must remember that there is no place for monopoly and exploitation, he added.

More than 12 lakh socially and economically disadvantaged students received free ed-tech course coupons worth over Rs 253 crore under NEAT 3.0.

Speaking about the technical books in regional languages, Pradhan said, “Our diverse languages are our strength, and harnessing them is key to building an innovative society. Learning in regional languages will further develop the critical thinking capacity and enable our youth to become global citizens.

NEAT is an initiative to provide the use of best developed technological solutions in the education sector to enhance the employability of youth on a single platform for learners’ convenience. These solutions use artificial intelligence for a personalized learning experience, better learning outcomes, and skill development in niche areas. AICTE is acting as the facilitator in the process while ensuring that the solutions are freely available to a large number of socially and economically backward students.

Secretary of higher education Sanjay Murthy; AICTE chairman Anil Sahasrabudhe; AICTE vice-chairman M P Poonia, AICTE member secretary Rajiv Kumar and senior officials of the ministry were present on the occasion.

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