Kerala CM announces multi-pronged strategy to ensure gadgets, connectivity for all students

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that the State government has a multi-pronged strategy to enhance the online schooling system necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The chief minister said that steps have been taken to ensure gadgets for all students and also for ensuring proper internet connectivity throughout the State.

Vijayan said on Saturday that students belonging to the Adivasi community will be prioritised for online education. He said that study rooms will be set up at every Adivasi ‘ooru’ (hamlet), besides providing gadgets and giving training for students and their parents on how to use them.

“Though not similar, almost every school in the state has students who are without gadgets and are unable to afford one,” said the chief minister.

Vijayan added that the state had a fruitful meeting with service providers, who have ensured that connectivity will be strengthened throughout the state.

Vijayan said that the state recommends a laptop or a tablet instead of smartphones considering the latter could be used by other members of the family.

“The State government has found that there are families that cannot afford any gadget while there are others that do not have the means at the moment and for such families, interest-free loans will be provided. The KSFE has already announced a scheme in this regard,” said the chief minister.

The chief minister also appealed to the parents who can afford more than one gadget to buy one for a student in need.

The State government has urged parent-teacher organisations to take the initiative of preparing a list of students at the school itself. Vijayan claimed that committees will be set up starting at the school level and a comprehensive list of students needing gadgets will be prepared at the state level.