Education sector has been one of the worst impacted sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a report by UNESCO more than 1.5 billion students have been effected since the beginning of the pandemic. More than 825 million learners are still out of school as of January 2021. A World Bank report published in December 2020 predicts that there could be an increase of 10% in learning poverty around the globe which means that an additional 72 million primary school children could fail to learn to read or leave education almost entirely.

These grim facts and figures are continuously pushing innovators and technologists working in the EdTech sector to come up with inclusive solutions that can address the imminent crises. This crises is multi-faceted and concentrated efforts are required on all fronts to overcome the challenges associated with disseminating education in the time of a pandemic. Innovators and disruptors are constantly making efforts to reinvent online educational services in a manner that not only focuses on enhancing the learning experience for students but also delivers a seamless teaching experience for teachers.

The investment flow in EdTech sector also shows that the sector is about to experience a major boost in the coming years. According to EU-Startups, the global EdTech investment reached an all-time high of € 15.87 billion in 2019 while for the subsequent years the predictions show an increase of 15% in investment flow for the EdTech sector.

Keeping up with the global trend; NIC Peshawar’s alumni startup, Tutors Gateway, has been constantly refining its solution and is currently the market leader in the EdTech Space for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. They are providing an alternative learning system to students as well as an earning opportunity to the teachers who are losing their jobs because of COVID-19. In the past one year, the startup has provided tutoring opportunity to more than 1,000 teachers by connecting them with students.

Similar growth pattern has been observed in the case of ZamaSchool EdTech, which is also NIC Peshawar’s alumni startup. Zama School has a diversified product portfolio in the EdTech space which includes ERP Solutions for Schools, a mobile App to connect students, schools and parents on one platform among others. The startup has on-boarded a record number of schools onto their platform during the pandemic and has made remote education easier for lower to middle tier schools.

To tackle the education crises, it is imperative that more resources and energies are dedicated towards innovating the EdTech space. These innovators can spearhead the movement to eradicate learning poverty and illiteracy which is on the rise due to the current pandemic. This is also a good opportunity for schools to invest in their digital infrastructure which will not only improve the over-all quality of education but will also ensure inclusivity.