ABSTRACT: ‘Expect the unexpected’, is the new norm in today’s world. The sudden shift to the new normal is a challenge combined with a strong will, a fighting spirit, and uneasy adjustments. Like any other stream of life, education also suffered a sudden paradigm shift. The happy interaction and bright looks of the students and teachers are now a dream. The new normal shifted to students and teachers adopting ICT tools for continuing their teaching-learning process. Albeit the difficulty learning in ICT mode is already introduced to the students of the digital era as part of blended learning. However, the sudden shift to online learning posed challenges of connectivity, interaction, and the personal touch of the conventional classroom interaction between teachers and students, and student-to-student interaction. As the days passed by with no immediate cure for the pandemic, in spite of the vaccination drive: the education sector took a strong beating. Over 285 million young minds have faced the serious issue of a break in their education, the structure of learning and assessment has undergone a sudden shift from the traditional chalk-talk method. The change in teaching strategies has affected the students of all sections of society. Only students with a good financial background and urban background have adapted to the change with ease. The rest of the students, that is the urban poor and the rural students have seriously missed classes. It has directly affected the student’s future and the economic status of our country. This paper tried to study and analyze the issues and problems faced by students from various backgrounds and how they have tried to cope up with the challenge of achieving normalcy.

KEYWORDS: Pandemic, Net connectivity, ICT tools, chalk and talk method, blended learning.

Author & Affiliation: Uma Devi Nandan, Keshav Memorial Institute of Commerce and Sciences, Hyderabad – 500029