The Indian state government of Punjab will make computer education a compulsory subject come this October with a view to make all 1.35 million students digitally literate by next year.
This is the third phase of an information communications technology (ICT) project by the Punjab Department of School Education. The project aims to raise computer literacy among upper primary students (class sixth to 12th) based on national standards. After seven years of computer education, students will be able to write programmes in advance computer languages, such as C++.
The first two phases of this initiative successfully covered 1.1 million students from 2880 state schools, Dr Upinderjit Kaur, India’s Education and Languages Minister has revealed.
The initiative cost Rs 2.65 billion (US$55.5 million).
To extend the programme to the remaining 250,000 students and 2085 schools, and bring the project to a close, Kaur said that Rs1.32 billion (US$27.7 million) was further invested and 5014 computer trainers were recruited.
On top of that, general school teachers will also be trained to use IT tools for teaching. Refresher training will be provided by computing giants Microsoft and Intel.