Making Quality Education Accessible
December 2015

Making Quality Education Accessible

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Uday Thakkar, Chief Operating Officer, Dynaflex Pvt Ltd

Uday Thakkar, Chief Operating Officer, Dynaflex Pvt Ltd

Uday Thakkar, Chief Operating Officer, Dynaflex Pvt Ltd, shares with Elets News Network (ENN) about the reservation in higher education, role of technology in making quality education accessible to all and future educational technological transformations and more

Does reservation in higher education is defeating the purpose of imparting the best possible education to meritorious candidates?

The reservation system was put into practice as a result of principle of positive discrimination enshrined in the constitution in order to correct the historical injustices made to certain sections of the society. On analysing the system, it shows that it has failed to achieve the stated objective. The Supreme Court’s move to scrap the quota system has entailed both positive and negative aspects within it.

According to me, removing the quota will make sure that admissions are given only on the basis of performance rather than some other indicators. Also, putting up a merit criteria will ensure that every candidate puts his/her best efforts to get admission. This would bring healthy competition and make sure that the best talent is selected.

In my opinion, a better way would be to adopt a middle path, whereby, reservations are made on the basis of an objective criteria-economic indicators so as to achieve the idea of egalitarian society.

In the light of Supreme Court ruling, what would be the impact of doing away with all forms of reservation in institutions of higher education?

I don’t think it is ever going to happen as promises for providing reservation to people is one of the crucial ways to seek votes in our country. However, if it happens, the total scenario of India will change.

There is no scarcity of talent in India, the only reason people don’t get chance is due to their poor financial conditions. The decision of scrapping reservation will be the proof of equality in India.

‘Access’ to all & ‘Quality’ of education are the major fault lines in the education system in India. What role can technology play in bridging these fault lines?

It has been promised for a long time that technology will change education for better – make it more affordable and accessible. The promise of educational technology is more important in Indian context because we have a massive deficit of access to high quality education at the primary and high school level due to a number of seemingly insurmountable challenges, ranging from geographical distribution to socio-economic condition of the learners who attend a majority of Indian schools. Also, the cost of educating one of the world’s greatest populations has been steadily increasing, and there is expectation that technology may make education affordable for those who are so far unable to benefit from the same.

For policy makers, it is important to understand where the education technology industry is headed and how it’s potential can be tapped in to change the stark realities prevailing in India with respect to education at the grassroots. This will, in turn, help to bridge these fault lines leading to economic prosperity and spread of education.

How technological transformations and innovative learning tools can change the education landscape in India in the coming decade?

Today, technology is widely used in every sphere of life, influencing students’ expectations for using it in higher education. Online learning, in particular, is touted a key delivery mode in higher education that will address the majority of drivers of change. Now, high-school students see their educational future built almost entirely around technology. They are eager to incorporate the electronic tools (smartphones, i-pads, etc) into their education. Students entering college today want to design their own curriculum and find ways to learn in their own style.

In my view, technological transformations and innovative learning tools will surely change the education landscape in India in the coming decade

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