At a time when India’s EdTech players are creating immense value for the global audience, the industry’s most prominent companies have come together to form the India EdTech Consortium (IEC).
Aligned with the Government’s recent advisory and backed by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), the IEC will grant each participating learner with access to quality education at an affordable level, lining them up for academic success in the future.
Holding consumer interest at its core, the EdTech consortium has committed to observe and adhere to a common ‘Code of Conduct’ and establish a Two-tier Grievance Redressal Mechanism to ensure that the positive impact of the industry reaches every deserving consumer while protecting their interests and promoting their rights.
Several notable EdTech entities have joined the IEC, including the Indian EdTech company Byju’s, Careers 360, Classplus, Doubtnut, Great Learning, Harappa, Times Edutech and Events Ltd, Scaler, Simplilearn, Toppr, Unacademy, upGrad, UNext Learning, Vedantu and the online learning platform WhiteHat Jr.
The move to set up IEC comes at a time when Indian EdTech players are creating immense value for the global audience. “The Indian EdTech sector has grown considerably over the last two years with funding and consolidations strengthening the ecosystem,” says Vamsi Krishna, Co-Founder and CEO of Vedantu. “However, while business growth is critical, so is consumer protection since this will allow students and parents to make more informed decisions about the future”
With each passing day, fintech and its associated branches are becoming ever-more complex and comprehensive. Many in the industry view education as a major key to accelerating the adoption of technology services and a wider level of public understanding into the capabilities of developing services is seen as the missing piece in this regard.
Likewise, the disruptions led by the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns compelled both parents and educational institutions to implement tech-enabled learning solutions, thereby accelerating the growth of the sector.
Indian EdTech operators have been working to solve these issues around accessibility and affordability through the provision of quality courses led by industry-savvy teachers, instructors and faculty members.
Initiatives, like the formation of the IEC, has elevated India’s position on the global map as an education hub. The overall Indian EdTech ecosystem impacts over half a billion school students, college students and working professionals across India. At this scale, it is critical that the rights of learners are protected; something that the consortium remains committed to.
“We are completely aligned with the Government’s principles on safeguarding consumer interests and welcome the creation of guidelines that help students reach their learning goals in a manner that makes them future-ready and conceptually strong,” comments Divya Gokulnath, Co-founder of Byju’s. “We have always believed that the student should be at the centre of the education system and as educators, we must do everything possible to create the right set of processes and methods to empower and enhance their learning.”
Subho Ray, President of Internet and Mobile Association of India, added to this with: “IAMAI and members of the IEC are deeply committed to ensuring ethical standards to protect learners on online educational platforms. IEC seeks to empower the learners by not just helping them make informed decisions but by also having their grievances redressed timely. The formation of this self-regulatory body is an important step towards protecting learners as more and more students, teachers and stakeholders are becoming a part of the online education ecosystem.”
In the recent past, the education sector has undergone significant transformation and EdTech has supplemented in driving new-age academic excellence. Having created a significant impact by offering quality and affordable education services, EdTech entities have also improved learnability and employability for users to address the evolving needs of the job market.
The adaptive learning solutions have ensured that learners are not merely ‘knowledge receivers’ but ‘knowledge creators’ as well. The sector has also created a large number of employment opportunities. However, as the sector and end-users grow at a fast pace, it is critical to establish a standard code of conduct for all Indian EdTech entities to adhere to and ensure that ‘learners’ remain at the core of all the business practices.