India has made good progress in many of the Millennium Development Goals but a dismal number of children in remote and rural India continue to drop out of school or perform poorly in reading, arithmetic and sciences. Our model for Inclusive Education, called Amrita Rural India Tablet enhanced Education (AmritaRITE, 2016) is inspired and guided by the principle of providing both ‘Education for a Living’ and ‘Education for Life’ skills. AmritaRITE integrates traditional school educational goals with awareness regarding moral, scientific, technological, ecological, and social issues. The curriculum includes such topics as health and nutrition, moral values, technology skills, gender equality, child labor and trafficking awareness as well as respect for each other and for Mother Nature to ensure the holistic growth of the child. To achieve these goals, our program utilizes sophisticated multilingual mobile learning aids that are adapted for rural areas to work with low-bandwidth Internet. The methodology evolved through our experiences working in 41 remote villages in 21 diverse states of India over a period of two years; thus, the AmritaRITE program was designed for adaptability to individual community circumstances. School systems and NGOs can incorporate key elements of AmritaRITE’s holistic curriculum, models for community involvement, teacher training and e-learning technology to achieve quality and inclusive education in both village and urban environments.
Prof. Prema Nedungadi, Raghu Raman, Menon, R., and Mulki, K., “AmritaRITE: A Holistic Model for Inclusive Education in Rural India”, in Children and Sustainable Development: Ecological Education in a Globalized World, A. M. Battro, Léna, P., Sorondo, M. Sánchez, and von Braun, J., Eds. Cham: Springer International Publishing, 2017, pp. 171–184.