Classteacher, a brainchild of IIT alumni Rohit Pande and Sameer Buti, was founded in 1999, with a motive to impart educational content with the help of internet.
Imagine school students accessing their lessons on tablet; teachers using interactive white board in classroom to clarify doubts or students download notes on the tablet. Isn’t it quite interesting to read? Classteacher Learning System with the changing trend in education and the advancements in technology has enabled to turn this into reality. There was a time when learning was confined to the four walls of a classroom or confine to the books. But now it has transformed into an interactive voyage of discovery and learning.
Classteacher, brainchild of Rohit Pande and Sameer Buti, IIT alumni was founded in 1999 with a motive of imparting educational content with the help of internet. Classteacher offers digital classroom solutions to over 600 schools, 1 million students and 25,000 educators all across India. It has been empowering technology solution for schools in the K-12 segment for more than 12 years.
It is the only company, which provides complete solutions in Digital Interactive Programme, Classpad, Assessment Program, Digital Math Program, Digital Science Program, Online Program and Digital Language Program.
Entrepreneur India interacted with Sameer Buti, Executive Director and Co- Founder of Classteacher, to understand the need of interactive classroom, key trends and lessons from his entrepreneurial journey.
Q. How did the idea to launch Classteacher come into being?
Ans: When we started out, technology has already started impacting all spheres of life. It already entered financial sector, banking space, and at that point of time we realized that the way education was been conducted had not changed since years together, and there was possibility to bring in value addition through introduction of technology. We were quite passionate about it because our families had been into education and teaching. Given that, both these factor came together and we decided to do something in education sector.
Q. Highlight the aim and objectives of Classteacher solutions.
Ans: The primary objective of why we are doing this is to improve the learning outcome of the students. Today, students are exposed to large number of media; they have very different style of learning when compared to the previous generation. So when you bring in technology, you can engage these students better and if you engage them better than the learning outcome improves.
Q. Tell us about your range of digital interactive solutions for classrooms in schools and students at home. What benefits come attached with these tools that are changing the teaching methodologies?
Ans: For schools, we have two kinds of solutions – one is meant for teachers two deliver instructions in classrooms – we call that as a digital interactive classroom. That’s a solution that we have been implementing in schools for about eight years now. We are into equipped teachers, with the right tools and the software, through which they can deliver better concept in the classroom. The other programme which is more relevant in today’s context is using tablet in classroom for effective assessment of students and effective learning. So in this model, students also have a device with them, the teacher also has a device and she is able to monitor the activity of all the students and deliver more personalized and one-to-one instruction to the student.
Q. What are the distinct features of "Classpad" making it a hit among students?
Ans: It’s not about the tablet, but it is more about what a student can do with it. What we provide to students is a full end-to-end learning device, wherein the student gets all the resources that he or she needs to study a particular subject or a unit within that. More importantly, it personalises the whole learning process for a student. Assessments, which are built in the platform, determine the level of understanding of students on each and every micro unit of learning.
Q. Being one of players dealing in technology education, what all changes have you witnessed over the decade in education sector?
Ans: A lot actually – From the time when schools and teachers were very sceptical about what technology can do to a scenario of today where there is a large degree of comfort towards using the various kind of technology. The level of training and the inputs you have to give to the institution, schools and teacher at that point of time and today have come down substantially. They have very large degree of comfort and understanding with technology and also the expectations of the stakeholders, parents and students have also changed today. Earlier, it was a good to have ‘kind of feature’ for the schools, if they were introducing technology. Today, any parents or students want that as a base level expectation.
Q. How is Classteacher unique from others in the same sector? How do you see the growth scenario in this business stream in coming years?
Ans: We have been working on the solutions that are applicable to the larger majority of the students across the country. We went in creating learning platforms, where we decided that just having online platforms might not suffice because there are a lot of students, who do not have access to the internet.
Moreover, there are students who do not have access to the computers. We have worked upon our product development framework. We have solution that works on cloud. We have solution for students available on pen drive and also available on tablets. Secondly, the whole approach and philosophy that we have followed over these years in terms of our product development has been to make it highly interactive. You can’t use the device as the replication of the textbook. So, idea is not just to pool in resources, but the product should rather be engaging. That’s where the whole idea of personalised adaptive engine came in, which basically modifies the content, and the student sees his/her assessment depending upon their strength and weakness.
Q. Can you elaborate on the Skill Assessment Programme developed by Classteacher Solutions for the students?
Ans: Skill Assessment Programme is one of the format of assessing the strength and weakness of the students. It is used to determine the key strengths of a student and future career goals. Since it starts at very early age group, it is more like a GSP for a student. It’s just a guiding direction. Students start getting signal at very early age, which enables them to know there strength or weakness with the help of which he can choose /her career.
Q. What has been your experience about schools so far in terms of adapting the latest technology for imparting education to students?
Ans: It has changed a lot over the last ten years. Initially, there were apprehensions. People when took up a programme faced a lot of roadblocks – whether it was availability of adequate IT infrastructure in the schools or the level of teachers’ understanding, which resulted in very long implementation schedule and trainings that we had to conduct. Over the period of time, these to have been taken care. Today, schools are very well equipped in terms of infrastructure and whatever they need. The teachers have come to a level, where they can pick up a technology and new ideas very quickly. Additionally, there have been heavy demand and pressure created by the students and parents to provide certain tools, solutions to them.