COVID-19 Impact | Slow internet speed hampers online education amidst lockdown

Various online platforms launched by educational institutes and education department are facing tremendous issue of slow internet speed in dissemination of learning via portals.

“We are trying our best to engage students on digital platforms and students are also interested in such initiative but the only problem is slow speed of internet which hampers the learning process and disturbs the continuity of a lecture,” said a private school teacher.

Various government and private schools are putting their efforts in uploading online tutorials and e-content on the school websites while teachers are also reaching out to students by uploading video lectures on Youtube channels and Facebook pages.

But the slow speed of 2G internet in Kashmir disturbs the entire model of e-learning.

However, both government and private schools in their bid to engage students have started reaching out to students on digital platforms like Google classrooms, Zoom App and other types of social media.

The initiatives are being taken despite the availability of limited 2G internet services. “It is difficult to stream live classes in Kashmir given the non-availability of high speed internet. So we record lectures on different subjects and upload them on YouTube channel for students to download and watch later,” a school teacher said.

The government school teachers have set up Zoom Cloud classes in various districts besides giving online lectures through Google classrooms.

Already the school education department has distributed study material among the students to cover their syllabus of Unit I and II at their homes amid the lockdown

“We have distributed the study material among 3.75 lakh students across Kashmir. Schools in two districts are yet to distribute the material but the process will be completed in two days,” Director School Education Kashmir (DSEK) Muhammad Younis Malik said.

The department has also started televised classes for students on DD channel. The two half-hourly duration classes are being telecasted every day at 4 pm and 6 pm respectively. “We are exploring various types of digital platforms that can be used to engage students sitting at their homes. Some of the schools have also uploaded the video lectures of the teachers on their school websites,” Malik said.

“We are mulling to set up dedicated digital classrooms in schools. It will be a permanent feature to have video lectures and online content available for students,” Malik said.

He said that District Resource Groups (DRGs) have uploaded 150 lessons on various subjects on YouTube channels.

“We have a team of 700 DRGs who are well trained and subject specialists. They have been entrusted to run this initiative and make it a success,” DSEK said.