The Primary Education system of Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) is the largest Urban Primary Education system in Asia.
The Primary Education System has been a pioneer in piloting various innovations to improve the quality in the educational systems. In an interesting exploratory initiative, MCGM has collaborated with Mumbai headquartered Edindia Foundation (EIF), to leverage data analytics on student assessment of data sets. EIF has deployed an in-house developed “data analytics” solutions for officials and management in MCGM’s education system. Data analytics is a norm in sectors such as FMCG, e-commerce etc. however, it is yet to see an extensive use in the social impact space especially education.
EIF’s “Nirnay” data analytics solution works on secondary data collected by the education department, processing it through a range of analytical tools to derive information and establish a Decision Support System (DSS). Nirnay further enables visualization by constructing relevant dashboards customized to the various stakeholder needs and makes it “easy to access” by rendering the dashboard on mobiles. MCGM’s partnership with EIF was initiated in 2018-19 as a pilot project which processed about 6 million data points to derive usable inferences. In addition to visualizing learning vulnerabilities related data, Nirnay also created a “recommendation engine”, using an algorithm to pick up top 5 recommendations specific to the teacher in a specific school and the same was presented in Nirnay app for Teachers’ reference.
The Nirnay App is user friendly as it allows the teachers to interact in their language and as part of professional development offering tags open education videos for self-learning.
The results of the pilot program were insightful and proved useful in shifting the dialogue amongst school supervisors and school teachers from exclusively administrative angle to students’ learning vulnerabilities. It also aided prioritizing teachers’ training plans and planning the content for the same. Considering the potential to leverage Nirnay in other large data sets, MCGM has deepened its engagement in 2019-20.
Given the sheer volume of comprehensive data available in the social sector, structured analysis of data, especially in the education sector is the need of the hour. Nirnay Data Programme has the potential to cater to that need and enable better informed teachers and decision makers and thereby better quality of education for our students.
Currently the Nirnay Data Programme is managing data corresponding to half a million students and supporting 25000 teachers’ and administrators through its data analytics dashboards.