APAAR: All you need to know about this ‘One Nation, One ID’ to be rolled out for students

The Union Education Ministry recently notified the States to begin the process of introducing the Automated Permanent Academic Account Registry or ‘APAAR’. The ministry, in its letter to all the states, directed them to obtain the consent of parents of all schools under their respective jurisdiction to initiate the APAAR enrolment process.
What is APAAR?
The Automated Permanent Academic Account Registry – APAAR, dubbed as the ‘One Nation, one student ID’ is an Education Ecosystem Registry or an ‘EduLocker’.
Earlier in May this year, the National Educational Technology Forum (NETF) head and former AICTE chairman Dr Anil Sahasrabuddhe had mentioned working on a registry of the entire educational ecosystem, comprising students, teachers, and schools and colleges.
NETF, an autonomous body under the Ministry of Education, was set up under the NEP 2020, to look into addressing gaps and creating strategic thrust on technology-based intervention in the education domain. Such as laying down standards of content and technology, and guidelines for online/digital teaching-learning. The APAAR will give each student enrolled from pre-primary to higher education, a unique identification number. This will be in addition to the already existing Aadhaar ID that every individual has.
How does One Nation, One ID benefit students?
The APAAR or EduLocker will be a lifelong ID number for students for seamless tracking of their academic journey and achievements. They will be able to digitally store their exam results, learning outcomes, co-curricular achievements such as ranking in Olympiads or receiving specialised skill training and much more. In addition to that, students transferring from one school to another will face less hassle in obtaining admission to a new institution in any part of the country.
Enrolment process
The enrolment process will be carried out by the school, with the consent of their parents, who will also be able to withdraw their consent at any given point of time. The government assured that the data will be shared only with concerned government agencies if and when required. The data collected on each student by the schools will be stored in a centrally functioning District Information for Education portal.
APAAR: Challenges and concerns
Given the ongoing concerns about Aadhaar’s data security, and the numerous instances of data breaches, many people have raised concerns about the initiation of the APAAR registration process.
School authorities have raised the issue of already pending Aadhaar verification of students, which is kept optional. The addition of the APAAR registry can increase the administrative burden on the teaching faculty.

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