More than 10,000 students of primary and secondary schools run by the Kakinada Municipal Corporation (KMC) are going to enjoy the ‘Smart Classroom’ experience from this academic year, with 257 conventional classrooms turning digital as part of the ‘Smart City’ initiative.
All the 188 classrooms in the 14 high schools run by the KMC have been upgraded with virtual classroom facilities. Further, 69 classrooms in 11 primary schools of the total 52 under the purview of the corporation have been digitised.In addition, a state-of-the-art studio has been set up at the Smart City Command and Communications Centre where teachers can take special classes that can be relayed to the students at all the schools with virtual classroom facility.
Moreover, all the 14 high schools are now equipped with labs, consisting of 30 computers each to facilitate digital literacy among students.The schools can be utilised as the centres for the online competitive examinations conducted by the Central and State governments.“Digital classrooms will help students understand the lessons in a better way. As the teachers need not draw the diagrams or maps on the blackboard, lot of time will be saved to cover the syllabus in time. As the video lessons are stored forever, they can be replayed multiple times for the benefit of the slow learners,” explains J.V.R. Murthy, Director of the JNTUK’s Incubation Centre and an independent director of Kakinada Smart City Corporation Limited (KSCCL).A special training programme for teachers of the KMC schools has been designed and plans are afoot to encourage innovative teaching methods by making use of the infrastructure and facilities.
“This is just the beginning. The creation of technology-based infrastructure will usher in a revolution in the classroom teaching,” Mr. Murthy says.Around 2.7 lakh is needed to set up a virtual classroom while same for a digital classroom is 1.7 lakh. A sum of 14.36 crore has been spent on infrastructure and another 12.5 crore on technology. The upgrade of infrastructure includes plastering, putty and painting, flooring, waterproofing, doors and windows fixing, landscaping, levelling of playground, construction of compound walls, and renovation of toilets and parking sheds, besides improving the drinking water facility and the drainage system.
“We are confident that the new classrooms will help students understand the concepts in a better way, besides honing the life skills for holistic development,” says J. Sujay Arun, CEO of the KSCCL.