A news item in Lankadeepa last week says that Grade 1-5 would be removed from National schools and set up as separate neighborhood schools for which admissions would be solely based on proximity to the school. At this point these are only recommendations made in response to a supreme court decisionÂ making current system of admissions unconstitutional.
At the seminar on “Year 1 Admissions” that the Education Forum held sometime back we indeed posed that option as a solution to the year-1 admissions problem.
Should all government-run popular schools get out of primary education, reserving all class spaces, including those freed up by the closure of elementary schools, to those who pass the 5th grade scholarship exam?
And we received support for the argument from those who gathered.
It took a supreme court decision to get the education department to rethink, but it is gratifying to see them move in the right direction.
This is like another “Kekille theenduwa” and the easiest to take. We don’t need a education officials to take these kind of decisions. What they should do is it try and improve selected rural schools. Improving 1 less attractive school per predesiya sabha will at least reduce the problem. Year 5 scholarship is already a stress to kids and parents. This decision will worsen the situation. What will happen to those who fail year 5 scholarship exam. They can’t stay in a primary & need a decent school as well. At that point parents will do all the things that they are doing at year 1 now, and will not release any pressure from them. It will create new complications which are not known by now. At the end there will be a mass drive towards international schools, wasting parents money, enriching businessmen involved in International school industry and further degrading government education & our cultural values.