With Government of India mandates on CSR spends, more social projects are being scouted by companies operating in India. One such social project which is getting attention of the Corporate World is by SkillEd India.
SkillEd India Vocational Education programs project is aimed at emancipation of about 47 million school going Indian students, who drop out early of their schools every year (MHRD Statistics), to opt for work in order to support their families economically. Even worse, they enter into the space of work, without any skill training. To help these students in getting proper skill training, while they are still in their school, SkillEd India ( a JV of Kunskapsskolan Education Sweden AB (“KED”) and Manav Rachna Educational Institutions (“MREI”)),supported by National Skill Development Corporation (under MOU with SkillEd India JV), a government-funded institution responsible for key skill development initiatives in India has started a pilot project in 100 Government Schools of Haryana in PPP Mode benefitting about 30,000 potential drop-out students in the state. Under this project, vocational education is being imparted to students in grades 9-12 using the KED Methodology, which is the same methodology that Kunskapsskolan deploys in its schools in Sweden and globally. At the commencement of the project, KED, MREI and NSDC jointly committed a sum of around USD 1.5 M (INR 10 Crores) for implementing this pilot by developing digital content in Hindi and English, training vocational teachers in schools to be able to understand and use the KED methodology, for on-field pedagogic support, and for monitoring of project implementation. The State Government of Haryana, with due approval from the Honourable Chief Minister of the state is supporting this program.
At present, digital content for 3 Sectors – Retail, IT and Beauty & Wellness has been developed in Hindi and English.5 model vocational labs were initially set up using funds of KED and MREI. In addition, during the Financial Year 2019-20, 8 more KED enabled vocational labs have been setup across government schools of Haryana, which were made operational using the CSR funds contributed by organizations like Sony India, Oriflame, NSDC, Honda, Orient Electric etc. Oriflame also contributed its CSR funds to provide Industry Training to 500 Vocational School Teachers of Retail and Beauty & Wellness sectors.
More sectors like Agriculture, Automobiles, Banking and Insurance, Health Care, Media and Entertainment, Physical Education and Sports, and Travel and Tourism are on the anvil.
With the help of CSR of Swedish, Japanese and Indian companies, SkillEd India project is seeking support to first expand in Haryana from the current pilot in 100 schools to 1051 schools in the state and later expand out of Haryana to all Indian States in phases to cover over 0.65 M students in over 7000 schools across the country.
The SkillEd India team conducts regular classroom observations in all the schools where the KED labs are operational. The purpose of this activity is to establish the effectiveness of teacher trainings and to ensure a smooth flow of classroom lessons by mentoring the teachers.
An ongoing lab session or a practical session is observed to understand if the teachers are keeping the session student-centric and acting as facilitators instead of instructors. The students’ and teacher’s level of comfort with the learning portal is assessed along with the teacher’s ability to create a blended learning classroom that combines technology, discussions and other teaching-learning strategies. The SkillEd India team also checks for technical issues related to internet connectivity, working of the projector, headphones and other hardware.
The teachers are provided with a constructive feedback at the end of the session. Their concerns if any are also heard and the required support – pedagogical as well as technical is extended to help them overcome stumbling blocks in the productive delivery of the digital curriculum.