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Google announces partnerships with CBSE, Prasar Bharati

Google on Monday announced partnerships with the Central Board of Secondary Education’s Skill & Education wing and Prasar Bharati, the government’s public broadcasting wing that runs Doordarshan. “By the end of 2020, we will enable over 1 million teachers in 22,000 schools across India to deliver blended learning that combines the classroom approach with online learning, using free tools like G Suite for Education, Google Classroom, YouTube and more,” Sapna Chadha, Google’s Senior Country Marketing Director for Google India and Southeast Asia said during Monday’s Google for India event.

Google also announced a US$1 million grant to New Delhi-based Kaivalya Education Foundation from its philanthropic wing Google.org. “Using these funds, KEF will work with the Central Square Foundation and TeacherApp to train 700,000 teachers to deliver virtual education for vulnerable students so that they can continue learning at home,” Google said. This is CBSE’s second partnership with Big Tech in recent days — the education body had announced a partnership with Facebook to teach Augmented Reality and Instagram use via local partners on July 6.

Prasar Bharati partnership

Google will be partnering with Prasar Bharati “to launch an edutainment series across its network, designed to help business owners adapt to the evolving challenges of COVID-19 with online tools, learn from other companies, and plan for the long-term future.” The company said that education materials would be delivered by TV and radio to students as well, though it’s not clear whether this would also be done through Doordarshan.

In addition to the Prasar Bharati partnership, the company announced the Grow with Google Small Business hub, for small business owners to “access digital tools to maintain business continuity, find resources like quick help videos, and learn digital skills — in both English and in Hindi”.

The Google for India livestream was a little light on new product announcements, which is the stock-in-trade for the annual event, which is usually held at an upscale hotel with startling production value. The company used the occasion to instead highlight its existing services, like a flood warning system that it announced in 2018, and to announce a US$10 billion fund called the Google for India Digitisation Fund.

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