‘The Middle Class Buys Dreams. The Businessman Sells Unrealistic Ones'
Forbes India|April 23, 2021
Anand Kumar starts the interview by setting the context. “Let’s get the math right,” says the mathematician.

Edtech today, underlines the man behind ‘Super 30’—a programme that provides free IIT entrance coaching to 30 students from the poorest families every year—has one dominating theme. “The focus is not on how much children are learning. The emphasis is on the valuation of the startup, on how much funding it gets,” Kumar laments, explaining how the education ecosystem in India has undergone a deplorable change over the last few decades. A few decades back, he lets on, the biggest compliment for a teacher was when students would come to them say: kya padhate hain, sir (you teach so well). Then the equation tilted more towards parents, who started valuing teachers solely on the basis of number of students who cleared engineering or medical entrance. The praise now: ‘Kya exam clear karate hain, sir (you make them pass so well). “Now the admiration for a teacher is kahan padhate hain, sir (where do you teach),” he says in a free-wheeling interview with Forbes India. Edited excerpts:

ON THE ‘BUSINESS’ OF EDUCATION

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