Kerala Chief Minister Pinayari Vijayan launched the logo for Kerala Infrastructure and Technology company (KITE), at a function in Thiruvananthapuram on Sunday. Kerala’s ‘IT@school’ project has been promoted to a government company named ‘KITE’.
The decision to transform the project to a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) not only gives the company more freedom and authority to grow further, but also allows it to avail Kerala Infrastructure And Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) funding.
KITE is the first new SPV of the Kerala government’s recently initiated Nava Kerala Mission. It will further the scope of the general education sector and push the ICT sector to support higher education for streams including at arts, science and engineering at colleges and universities.
The IT@School project was formulated in 2001 by the general education department so that schools of higher education could inculcate IT activities in their curriculum. In 2005, Information Technology was made a compulsory subject for class 10 students.
“The new form of KITE would help in facilitating ICT enhancement in Higher Education sector also, by fully using Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) tools.. The activities of VICTERS channel would also be expanded under the new mechanism.. However IT@School would be retained as a brand name under KITE,” said IT@School executive director K Anvar Sadath.
IT@School operated the VICTERS channels, the country’s complete educational channel, and provided 4071 schools with OCT infrastructure with the use of centrally sponsored ‘ICT at School’ scheme from 2007 to 2012.
The project last year re-initiated the ICT intervention at the lower primary and upper primary sections. For this, ICT textbooks were launched through Kalipetti and e@Vidya. About 1.5 lakh school teachers have been able to teach more effectively after being empowered by these skills.
Recently, IT@School launched the ‘Hi School Kuttikootam’ programme to provide more than 1 lakh students with training in Animation, Cyber Safety, Hardware, Electronics and Malayalam computing. Hi-tech programmes have already been initiated by KITE at 45,000 classrooms in 4775 schools at a cost of 493.50 crores.
General Education Department secretary Usha Titus has been appointed as KITE’s chairman and managing director and IT@School executive director K Anvar Sadath will serve as the vice chairman and executive director. Director of Public Instruction V Mohan Kumar will take the post of Director Board Member of KITE.