Howz dat Jennings old boy?

Posted on October 19, 2007  /  10 Comments

“Had Sir Ivor Jennings been Vice Chancellor now we would be very happy”, said former president of the students’ council of the Peradeniya University, Udul Premaratne. Speaking at a media briefing yesterday to explain the students’ position on the present controversy, surrounding the naming of a hostel, he said they did not have any problem with Sir Jennings who had rendered an immense service to the University. He said the students have the right to name the hostel building after anyone they like because it was built following appeals made by them. In 2003 Cabinet approval was given for a new hostel for the students to be built and the plan was to build it by 2005 but due to bribery and corruption which took place the date of completion was extended to 2007 Premarathne alleged. The students in 2005 they requested the Board of Directors to name the hostel after Rangitham Gunaratnam, who was a student leader during the 1989/90 insurrection.
Not in Sri Lanka but in New York City, USA. (නෑ, නෑ, ඇමෙරිකාවේ, ඇමෙරිකාවේ) Bonuses are only for teachers at schools with high concentrations of children from poor families. The unions have agreed with the condition that the incentives are to be given to a school and distributed evenly to all the teachers. Here is the report: http://www.nytimes.

Education Discussion Series – #1

Posted on October 18, 2007  /  0 Comments

The first discussion in the planned series on Education Reforms was held on October 4, 2007 at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute was.  It was quite a success judging by the energy and the enthusiasm demonstrated by the participants. I take this opportunity to thank the Inter University Student Federation for their presentation on “The Crisis in Education” and Viluthu for coming prepared for a presentation. A list of the all the participants including the names of those who sent their regrets are given at the end. The almost unanimous opinion of the participants was that we should continue these discussions in a panel format bringing different view points.
The UNP charged yesterday that education had been extremely politicized under the present government with 186 posts in the 200-strong cadre of the Sri Lanka Education Administrative Service (SLEAS) being filled on political grounds. UNP Kurunegala district Parliamentarian Akila Virage Kariyawasam told a news conference yesterday that school principals without any qualification in the SLEAS, had been picked for these posts due to their political affiliations. Mr. Kariyawasam said teachers had also been appointed as principals to some schools in a similar manner, and the Education Ministry had no plan to improve the sector. He said the UNP would launch a signature campaign on October 20 for a petition to be handed over to Speaker W.
Peradeniya University’s Senate yesterday suspended eight students from attending lectures for five weeks after they were found guilty of removing the Sir Ivor Jennings nameboard and damaging university property, Registrar Ranjith Alwis said. The names of seven students suspected of being involved in property damage were handed over to the Kandy Magistrate by police yesterday. The Magistrate issued orders to arrest and produce them before Courts. The lecturers who boycotted lectures to protest against the students’ unruly behaviour, following the university’s decision to name the new hostel after its first Vice Chancellor Sir Ivor Jennings resumed lectures from yesterday. By R.
දිනෙන් දින ජනපි‍්‍රයත්වයට පත්වන ගොඩගම සුභාරතී මහා මාත්‍ය මහා විද්‍යාලයේ වත්මන් දියුණුවට ඇපකැප වූ විදුහල්පතිවරයා හිටිහැටියේ මාරුකර යැවීමට එරෙහිව ප‍්‍රදේශයේ මවුපියන් හා සමිති සමාගම් රාශියක් විරෝධය පළ කරති. හෝමාගම, ගොඩගම සුභාරතී මහා මාත්‍ය මහා විද්‍යාලයේ විදුහල්පති ලෙස කටයුතු කරමින් සිටි කේ. පී. සිරිසේන මහතා ඉකුත් සතියේ වෙනත් පාසලකට මාරුකර යැවීම සම්බන්ධව, පාසල් සංවර්ධන සමිතියේ සාමාජික මවුපියන්, ආදිශිෂ්‍ය සංගමය සුභාරතී විදුහල සුරැකීමේ සංවිධානය, ගොඩගම “ දීඝායු” ජ්‍යෙෂ්ඨ පුරවැසි කමිටුව, ගොඩගම ප‍්‍රජාමණ්ඩලය, ගොඩගම එක්සත් වෙළඳ සංගමය ආදී සංවිධාන බලවත් විරෝධය පළකරන අතර , ඒ සඳහා බැනර් ආදියද ප‍්‍රදර්ශනය කර ඇත. ගොඩගම සුභාරතී විද්‍යාලයේ වත්මන් දියුණුවට කලාපීය අධ්‍යක්‍ෂවරිය කෙනෙහිලිකම් කරන බව පවසන ඔව්හු, පසුගිය තෙමස තුළ ගුරුවරුන් 10ක් අඩු කිරීම, කී‍්‍රඩා උත්සවයට පෙරදින කී‍්‍රඩා ගුරුවරිය මාරු කිරීම, නියෝජ්‍ය විදුරල්පතිනිය මාරුකර යැවීම පසුව ඉකුත් සතියේ කිසිම හේතුවක් නොමැතිව විදුරල්පතිවරයා මාරුකර යැවීම යන කරුණු මේ සඳහා පෙන්වා දෙති.
“Free Education,which was introduced by Dr. C.W.W. Kannangara, has been grossly neglected.
The state run Daily News reported today quoting Minister of Higher Education, Prof. Wiswa Warnapala, the Ministry of Higher Education has taken steps to explore the possibilities of getting scholarships awarded by Commonwealth countries and other international bodies for post-graduate education.  Further arrangements, according to the Minister are under way to seek the co-operation of the Commonwealth and non Commonwealth countries to get the number of scholarships awarded to universities substantially increased.  The Minister has reportedly said that the final benefit of this exercise would reach the under-graduates of the 15 universities.  In addition, the Minister of Higher Education is of the view that the number of scholarships awarded for various disciplines is not at all enough to generate enthusiasm among the teaching staff in 15 universities.
The Tamil United Liberation Front Leader V. Anandasangaree yesterday questioned whether the Tamil community has lost its dignity completely, in a statement expressing his shock on the murder of the Senior Maths Lecturer of the Jaffna University Mr. Mahinan. The veteran Tamil leader condemning the killing said that these types of barbaric acts are ruining the country’s culture and civilization. “The value of human life has become so cheap today that every Dick, Tom and Harry can do anything and go scot-free.
The private sector evaluates the applications made by job-seekers by checking whether they have the skills which will enable them to contribute to the organisations’ growth, image and profitability. Two of the more desired accomplishments it looks for in candidates are a reasonably good knowledge of English and of IT. Those who are not proficient in these subjects are forced to find less congenial employment or even remain unemployed for long periods. Of course, if they are graduates, they usually know how to organise noisy demonstrations which embarrass the government into giving them jobs created for the purpose, with no resultant increase in productivity or quality of service to the public, but those who fail to get into university are often left in limbo. In these circumstances, it was heartening to read, on September 19, 2007, in a short news item hidden away in a less than prominent position in one of our national newspapers, that the Ministry of Higher Education plans to conduct Year 14 classes in English and IT, wherever possible, for those students who are waiting for their Advanced Level Examination results.