May 2023 \ Business & Investment \ BUSINESS AND GOVERNANCE

By Nishant Arora

Mumbai: Apple has always believed that education is the great equaliser for people and the tech giant will continue to expand education and skilling initiatives in India to connect more underprivileged kids to the mainstream, Apple CEO Tim Cook told IANS in April.

Returning to India after seven years to launch Apple’s first own-branded retail store here, Cook paid a visit to Sitaram Mill Compound municipal school in Lower Parel area in Mumbai where Apple has integrated iPads and Apple TVs into the classrooms.

The English medium BMC school is run by teachers and staff members who are part of The Akanksha Foundation, a non-profit organisation. The school currently has 470 students and 55 alumni, and each class has up to 40 students.

Since the founding of the company, we’ve been very focused on education. It’s very deep in our DNA. The programmes like this really make my heart sing because we can see our products live in a learning environment,” Cook told IANS.

The Akanksha Foundation now runs 26 junior kindergarten through Grade 10 schools in economically-deprived areas in Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur. Student selection is done by lottery to ensure equity, and in addition to the core academic subjects, Akanksha places a strong emphasis on Socio-emotional and Ethical Learning.

Apple has sponsored their work since 2015. In addition to financial support, the company also helped them integrate iPad and Apple TV into their classrooms and several of their teachers have achieved Apple Professional Learning Specialist designation. “You can clearly see how the learning cycles are accelerating these kids and the engagement that they bring is simply great. This education programme is something that really makes me happy and we would expand such programmes in India to help more kids leverage our technologies,” Cook noted enthusiastically, as local Mumbai trains continue to pass by.

Tags: Mr Tim Cook

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