Budget 2022: Funds for online education, tax cuts for edtech, seeks private sector

Union Budget 2022: Private institutions, companies also seek tax cuts for fee-paying parents and funds for teacher education.

Budget 2022: Funds for online education, tax cuts for edtech, seeks private sector Union Budget 2022: Private education sector seeks funds for online education, tax cuts for edtech
Abhiraj P | Jan 18, 2022 - 6:12 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: Private education leaders and education technology entrepreneurs hope to see taxes cut for edtech and increased funding to education to improve access to online learning. They also hope to see outlays to teacher training increase and tax deductions for fee-paying parents in the Union Budget 2022.

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman will announce the Union Budget 2022 – the central government outlays for the next financial year – on February 1.

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Rajiv V Shah, professor of TA Pai Management Institute (TAPMI), Manipal, said that the government should support fee-paying parents with a full deduction of tuition fees of up to two children without it falling under the limit of Rs 1.5 lakh cap. “Existing rules make it difficult for parents to claim the deduction for tuition fees as the limit of Rs. 1.5 lakhs is exhausted by investment and compulsory savings related outflows”, he said.

According to Shweta Sastri, managing director of Canadian International School, the budgetary allocation in India for the education sector is not up to the mark as compared to other developed countries. Hence, the government should spend more on education, by encouraging digitization and reducing the urban-rural gap in education, she argued. “Quality of education in government schools, which educate most Indian children, should be improved with better funding and infrastructure development and teachers training in rural parts of India. Better internet connectivity and access to devices for students has to be ensured in all parts of the country as online education does not provide equitable access to everyone,” she said.

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Teacher training, edtech

Sujatha Kumaraswamy, CEO of MeritTrac Services says that the education sector needs increased budgetary allocations. She said that the execution plan for skill development and benchmarking assessments will boost the job market. She also mentioned the importance of teacher skilling and assessment.

Manoj Chawla, chief business officer at Tribyte Technologies said that greater allocation is necessary for teacher training and to improve students’ access to online learning devices. He said: “Although the COVID-19 pandemic has enhanced the online mode of education, and opened minds regarding its acceptance, the immediate challenges of teacher training and access to devices has to be addressed.”

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Gaurav Vohra, chief business officer of UNext Learning, expects a bigger allocation of funds for education and a reduction in taxation from the Union Budget 2022. “Innovation and emerging tech-based edtech enterprises continue to pay GST at 18%, unlike conventional school education, which has been excluded from GST. Reducing the taxation percentage will play a huge role in reaching learners from various strata of society”, he said.

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