Thiruvananthapuram: A visiting official Kerala delegation led by Chief Secretary V.P. Joy and other top officials in Finland were taken by surprise when officials from Finland wanted to get the expertise of the state's digital education -- the 'Little KITEs' IT clubs.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and State Education Minister V.Sivankutty also had to travel to Finland but cancelled the trip due to the sudden demise of CPI-M Politburo member and veteran leader, Kodiyeri Balakrishnan.
The exchange of educational models in Helsinki was decided during a meeting between the Finland Education Department officials and the Kerala team.
"While Kerala is keen to accept early Childcare, Science and Math education from Finland, it is the Little KITEs IT Clubs which have impressed Finland who has expressed their willingness to implement it in their schools. The knowledge transfer of Little KITEs is indeed an impact of two decades of ICT experience of Kerala, spearheaded by Kerala Infrastructure and Technology for Education (KITE), who will provide necessary technical assistance in this joint venture," said K. Anvar Sadath, CEO, KITE.
The Little KITEs members, who are primarily students of Class 8 to 10, are selected through an aptitude test, averaging 20 students in each school, led by a Little KITEs Master or Mistress, who are teachers. They oversee every ICT activity in their school, including training other students and also the proper upkeep and usage of ICT equipment.
The Little KITEs IT Clubs is India's largest ICT network of students, set up over 2,000 schools and having over 1,70,000 student members.
The Little KITEs initiative was inaugurated by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in 2018 January, as part of the Hi-Tech projects of the Government of Kerala, wherein ICT equipment worth Rs 8 billion was deployed at 4,752 secondary schools and 11,275 primary schools.
Every Little KITEs member is trained in different areas varying from electronics, animation, hardware, cyber-safety, 3D Modelling, and Artificial Intelligence, to name a few.