Dos and Don’ts When Enrolling in Online Education Courses
India’s shift to online education has been very rapid, accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic and with the emergence of many edtech companies that have started offering courses, tutorials, coaching for competitions, etc. . in online mode.
In this context, the Ministry of Education issued a notice, asking parents, students and all school education stakeholders to exercise caution when deciding to opt for online content and coaching offered by a multitude of electronic technology companies.
The ministry has also issued several dos and don’ts for stakeholders to follow before deciding to choose online content.
The ministry said it had been informed by the School Education and Literacy Department that some electronic technology companies were urging parents to offer free services and have the Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT) mandate signed or activate direct debit. characteristic, particularly targeting vulnerable families.
Here are some dos and don’ts that stakeholders in the education ecosystem can follow as advised by the Department of Education:
– Avoid the automatic debit option for payment of subscription fees: some electronic technology companies may offer the Free-Premium business model where many of their services may appear free at first glance, but to gain access to the continuous learning, students should opt for a paid membership. The activation of the direct debit can lead a child to access the paid features without realizing that he no longer has access to the free services offered by the company ed-tech.
– Read the terms and conditions before acknowledging acceptance of the learning software / device as your IP address and / or personal data may be tracked.
– Request a tax invoice statement for the purchase of content-loaded educational devices / app purchase / Pendrive learning.
– Perform a detailed background check of the ed-tech company you wish to subscribe to.
– Check the quality of the content provided by ed-tech companies and make sure that it is in line with the curriculum and your field of study and that it is easily understandable by your child.
– Clarify all your doubts / questions regarding payment and content before investing any amount for your child’s learning in an electronic technology company.
Enable parental controls and security features on the device or in the app or browser, as this allows you to restrict access to certain content and limit spending on app purchases.
– Help your child understand that some features of educational apps are used to encourage spending. Talk to them about possible marketing strategies used by Ed-tech companies and their consequences.
– Search online student / parent reviews of the ed-tech company for any registered grievances and marketing tips. Also share your suggestions and opinions that might be helpful to others.
– Record evidence of spam calls / forced registration for all education packages without full consent to file a grievance.
– Do not blindly trust the advertisements of ed-tech companies.
– Do not take out any loan you are not aware of.
– Do not install any ed-tech mobile application without verifying its authenticity.
– Avoid registering credit / debit cards on subscription apps. Place an upper limit on spending per transaction.
– Avoid adding your data like emails, phone numbers, card details, addresses etc. online, as the data may be sold or used for subsequent scams.
– Do not share any personal videos or photos. Be careful not to turn on the video function or make video calls on an unverified platform. Keeping your child’s safety at the highest priority.
– Do not subscribe to unverified courses because of their false promises.
– Do not trust “Success stories” shared by electronic technology companies without proper verification, as they could be a trap to attract more audiences.
– Do not authorize purchases without parental authorization. To avoid in-app purchases; OTP based payment methods can be adopted according to RBI guidelines.
– Do not share your bank details and OTP number with marketing staff. Beware of fraudulent cybers.
– Don’t click on links or open attachments or pop-ups from sources you don’t know.
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