G20 Summit and India: Priortising Education Technology for Holistic Growth

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The G20 Education Working Group has integrated multiple methods to meld technology in education with the assistance of several national and international organizations to move towards corrective measures in Indian education. The former G20 Presidency’s Education Working Groups (EdWG) prioritized strengthening educational systems by making them more inclusive, accessible, and progressive. Under past administrations, issues such as educational poverty, access to high-quality education, learning continuity during emergencies, and teacher support have been addressed.

The crucial role of education in addressing social and economic concerns has become even more apparent as the world moves past the pandemic towards normalcy. For this year, 2023, the Consultative Meeting highlighted four issues in line with the G20 Educational Priorities.

Foundational Literacy and Numeracy have long been a significant issue, particularly in India. It is based on the idea that learning a language beforehand aids in developing language literacy. Oral vocabulary, decoding, reading fluency, reading comprehension, and writing are essential. On the other hand, Foundational Numeracy refers to the ability to reason about and apply simple numerical concepts in everyday life. The key components of basic Numeracy are pre-number concepts, numbers and operations on numbers, shapes and spatial understanding, measurement and data handling.

Development of a strategy for making tech-enabled learning more inclusive, Qualitative and collaborative at every level

In the past three G-20 summits, 2020, 2021, and 2022, technology for education has become a top priority within the education agenda. On September 5, 2020, the G20 Education Ministers Meeting in Riyadh acknowledged the merits of blended and remote learning. It emphasized how crucial it is to expand access to top-notch education, professional development techniques, and active learning. This advisory meeting focuses on examining ongoing digital projects, offering creative methods for technology-enhanced learning, and improving their inclusion, quality, and collaboration at every educational level in the G-20 nations. Keeping the importance of “technology in education” in mind, this year, it also remains one of the prime focus areas for the summit.

Development of a strategy for building capacities, promoting life-long learning in the context of future work

Everyone believes that developing learners’ capacities and giving them the skills they need to handle the challenges of the present and the future is one of the main goals of education and training. The intended outcomes are making them literate, preparing them for the workplace, and building their fundamental competencies to handle life’s problems. The necessary abilities and skills required for sustainability have evolved, especially in today’s tech and AI-driven world. Considering this, policy interventions worldwide, particularly those in emerging countries like India, have emphasized the skills that aim to assist them to succeed in a highly competitive environment.

There are various interpretations of the skill sets that are frequently referred to as “21st Century Skills.” It broadly includes all of the skills that fall under the categories of “learning skills,” “life skills,” and “literacy skills.” It has also been referred to as having qualities and skills related to “communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking”. Employability skill has gained prominence and includes cognitive and non-cognitive attributes and skills in a knowledge framework. Therefore, “capacity building” & promoting “life-long learning” are also part of the key agenda for the G20 India Summit.

Development of a Strategy to present India’s experience in strengthening research and promoting innovation through richer collaboration.

Since the beginning, the Education Working Groups meetings have concentrated on a wide range of issues with global significance, including early childhood education, primary education, secondary education, and higher education. The G20 Forum has always emphasized the role of education in assisting with the more general goals of lowering poverty and inequality, promoting inclusive and sustainable economic growth, advancing access to high-quality education for all, particularly girls, and empowering women, youth, and vulnerable groups while focusing on the various issues.

The Group of Twenty (G20) comprises 19 countries (Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Türkiye, United Kingdom and United States) and the European Union. The G20 members account for nearly two-thirds of the world’s population, over 75% of global trade, and 85% of the world’s GDP.

Through numerous programmes and efforts, the G20 plays a key role in boosting global education sector. In India, these reformatory policies and efforts must be leveraged by the government, regulatory bodies, and HEIs (Higher Educational Institutions) to set a new benchmark regarding access to quality education and literacy levels for the nation.

The G20 offers member nations a forum for policy discussion and exchanging best practices and strategies. It also opens doors for collaboration and partnerships to foster global development. It especially encourages conversations about educational reforms, tactics for enhancing access and quality, and solutions to problems affecting the educational systems of different nations. The event aims to support inclusive educational systems that guarantee equitable access to high-quality education for all, especially vulnerable and marginalized populations.

India will host the 18th G20 Summit in New Delhi between 9-10 Sept 2023.

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