Home / News / India /  Covid disruption: Nilekani says education sector needs to adopt Aadhaar model

NEW DELHI: India’s school education sector needs to learn and adopt the Aadhaar model based on the five pillars -- universality, scale, portability, convenience and choice -- to reduce covid-led disruptions, Infosys Ltd co-founder Nandan Nilekani said Saturday.

With some 300 million students, the school education sector needs to be helped by what he termed ‘samaj, sarkar and bazaar" (society, government and the market).

Sharing his experience of Aadhaar, Nilekani, the architect of the universal digital identity number of Indians. said, “We have to think...for 300 million children, not about one school, or two schools. It's about how we navigate an entire society, and move forward."

We have to look at both quality and equity of learning, how do we make sure that everybody has access and the same quality, he said during a webinar organised by the Ashoka University. He said the entire education system must get ready collectively to deal with corona crisis and prepare for any lockdown in future if the situation worsens.

We have to be prepared for the fact that lockdown cycles are going to continue, he said. Even if we do open schools, it's entirely possible that after a few weeks, if there is an outbreak of cases, then again you will close the school. "And you may be in this mode of switching on and off the schooling system for a year or two," Nilekani said.

He said, it requires a unified response. “This is too big for each one of us individually to do it. It's too big for governments to do it alone. It's too big for NGOs to do it alone. It's too big for markets to do it alone. They still require samaj, sarkar and bazaar coming together, giving a unified response. And as I said, we cannot keep on responding to this tactically, we must get ahead of the curve," he added.

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