GOI Issues Advisory Against Ed-Tech Companies in India
Recently the Ministry of Education has issued an advisory for regulation of Education Technology (Ed-Tech Companies) platform.
- This step has been taken in the backdrop of various complaints in the Department of School Education and Literacy.
- In these complaints, the Ministry has been informed that some Ed-tech companies are luring parents by offering them free services.
- This advisory includes opting out of the automatic debit option for payment, signing up for a loan, and choosing not to register for credit or debit cards.
- Apart from this, it has also suggested to read and follow the child safety guidelines mentioned in the PRADYATA guidelines by the Ministry of Education before using any Ed-tech platform.
- Ed-Tech is an option to introduce information technology tools in the classroom for a more engaging, inclusive and personalized learning experience.
- It enables scalability and speed using a ‘direct to the device’ model.
- It eliminates geographical barriers. This helps the students to get high quality education from top institutes.
- There are more than 4,500 startups active in Ed-Tech in India.
Need for Regulation of Ed-Tech Industry:
- There is a lack of clarity on aspects such as data collection, storage, processing and potential monetization by Ed-tech companies.
- Malicious use of this sensitive data by unauthorized people and groups can result in crimes like social-engineering, financial crimes and fraud, cyber-bullying, user tracking, identity theft, etc.
- The privacy policies of Ed-tech companies are uncertain and unclear.
Social and ethical concerns related to the Ed-tech industry
- Distribution of bias based content.
- Inherent influence on career decisions
- Less effort to develop and re-skill teachers
- Standardization and moderation of content without regulatory approval.
Source – The Hindu