The digital world has not much to offer to learners seeking content in regional languages. But the New Education Policy (NEP) 2020 has set out to correct this bias and produce e-content in eight regional languages. The move to encourage digital content and technology comes as there is a digital push for education in times of coronavirus-induced lockdown.
“In online learning, most of the time our focus is on English or Hindi. But we will develop e-content in regional languages," said Higher Education Secretary Amit Khare. "But we will develop e-content in eight regional languages - Tamil, Telegu, Kannada, Malyalama, Gujarati, Marathi, Bengali, Oriya.”
To ensure the preservation, growth and vibrancy of all Indian languages, the NEP recommends setting up an Indian Institute of Translation and Interpretation (IITI), National Institute (or Institutes) for Pali, Persian and Prakrit, strengthening of Sanskrit and all language departments in HEIs, and use mother tongue/local language as a medium of instruction in more HEI programmes.
The policy will look into encouraging all languages in India. The various language institutes would be told to focus on promoting the scientific literature in Indian and classical languages and also promote ‘Lok vidya,’ the traditional arts which are forgotten in modern education.
The NEP encourages technology use for teaching, learning and assessment. A comprehensive set of recommendations for promoting online education consequent to the recent rise in epidemics and pandemics in order to ensure preparedness with alternative modes of quality education whenever and wherever traditional and in-person modes of education are not possible, has been covered.
“A dedicated unit for the purpose of orchestrating the building of digital infrastructure, digital content and capacity building will be created in the MHRD to look after the e-education needs of both school and higher education,” said statement from the ministry.
For the purpose of encouraging technology in educationan autonomous body, the National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), will be created. This will provide a platform for the free exchange of ideas on the use of technology to enhance learning, assessment, planning, administration.