- Title: Student steps in to bridge learning gap in India's slums
- Date: 9th July 2020
- Summary: NEW DELHI, INDIA (JULY 9, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF COLLEGE STUDENT, SATYENDRA PAL SHAKYA, WASHING FACE VARIOUS OF SHAKYA GETTING READY FOR CLASS BOOK BY FORMER INDIAN PRESIDENT A.P.J. ABDUL KALAM, "IGNITED MINDS" VARIOUS OF SHAKYA COMBING HAIR SHAKYA LEAVING SHAKYA TEACHING STUDENTS SHAKYA WRITING MATH FORMULAS (SOUNDBITE) (Hindi) COLLEGE STUDENT SATYENDRA PAL SHAKYA, SAYING: "Everywhere online classes have started but out here there is no electricity, there is no running water, we don't even have a proper place to stay. So, under such circumstances, these children do not have laptops or even mobile phones. And even if some have mobile phones, there is the problem of charging them as well as of no network. So, they will be left behind in their studies. These are poor children and to ensure that they do not lag in their studies, this is how I am trying to fulfill that gap." STUDENTS / SHAKYA WRITING ON WHITE BOARD VARIOUS OF STUDENTS SITTING IN CLASS (SOUNDBITE) (Hindi) TENTH GRADE STUDENT, PREETI, SAYING: "In online classes, we don't really understand anything. Even if we manage (to have) a (mobile) phone, still we don't have electricity, and there is the issue of (a lack of) network as well over here." SHAKYA USING LAPTOP IN CLASS STUDENT WEARING FACE MASK 14 (SOUNDBITE) (Hindi) TENTH GRADE STUDENT, RAHUL SHAKYA, SAYING: "We neither have a phone to attend online classes, nor do we get any network here. We don't have electricity. Power is a real issue here. So, we had asked sir (Shakya) how will we manage to appear for board examinations this year and he said 'don't worry, if you can come here then we will study here by following social distancing and sanitisation norms.'" CLASS IN PROGRESS VARIOUS OF SHAKYA TEACHING IN OPEN-AIR CLASS FOR NINTH GRADE STUDENTS STUDENTS WEARING FACE MASKS LOOKING ON STUDENT WRITING MATH FORMULA IN NOTEBOOK CLASS IN PROGRESS SHAKYA SOLVING MATH PROBLEM ON WHITE BOARD CHILD LOOKING ON GIRL WALKING BUFFALO ON ROAD OUTSIDE CLASS VARIOUS OF GIRL BATHING BUFFALO
- Embargoed: 23rd July 2020 12:42
- Keywords: India New Delhi coronavirus education online learning
- Location: NEW DELHI, INDIA
- City: NEW DELHI, INDIA
- Country: India
- Topics: Health/Medicine
- Reuters ID: LVA001CM364P3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:A 25-year-old college student in Delhi is stepping in to bridge the gap in online learning right in his own backyard.
After a lockdown was imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19, schools in India were shut down.
Recently, the government decided to keep the schools closed and move classes online.
For those who live in poor neighbourhoods, living without basic necessities such as electricity and running water is the norm.
But the absence of internet connectivity and laptops and smartphones, means children losing out in their education.
Satyendra Pal is stepping in to fill this void by holding classes for his neighbours - specifically the 9th and 10 graders - propping up a whiteboard against a hut in the open air.
The lessons are not a new activity for Pal, a maths graduate who hails from a village in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.
For the last five years, Pal had been teaching children from the neighbourhood slums under a flyover bridge. But the lockdown meant he had to stop the classes.
When online classes were introduced, Pal started getting requests from parents of children.
"These are poor children and to ensure that they do not lag in their studies -- this is how I am trying to fulfil that gap," Pal told Reuters Television at his open air class.
Schools have been shut across India since the country locked down its 1.3 billion people on March 25, leaving millions of children whose families cannot afford expensive devices with no access to education.
India has begun easing its coronavirus lockdown, which was among the strictest in the world and left millions without work.
(Production: Bhushan Kumar, Sunil Kataria, Angela Johnston, Angie Ramos)
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