A number of madrassas in West Bengal, beset by high dropouts and absenteeism, are seeing a turnaround after integrating Islamic theology with modern education through the power of technology.
After his science class on vitamins, standard nine student Abdul Lashkar went to the new computer lab in Dar-Un-Neda Siddiquia Madrassa here in Hooghly district to search the Internet about food habits of Prophet Muhammad.
Along with his classmates, he then came up with a digital story on how favourite foods of the Prophet nourished his body with vitamins and other nutrients.
“If we tell them about nutrition they won’t find it interesting but when we link it with Islam then the topic becomes interesting for them. It helps them relate to their education with the community they are coming from,” madrassa teacher Sugata Dey told PTI.
This idea of integrating ‘dini’ (religious) and ‘duniyavi talim’ (worldly education) with modern technology has been conceptualised by educator Amina Charania from Tata Trusts.
The new pedagogic framework for integrating technology in teaching and learning was adopted by the madrassa in 2014 and since then enrolment has doubled for class five students.
“I don’t see any dropouts happening now. On the other hand the enrolment has increased and so has attendance in classes,” said Babita Dutta Majumder of Vikramshila Education Resource Society who is working for the development of the minority education institutions.