Prepared by Niresh Eliatamby and Dr. Ruwan Dias, Cogitaro The important contemporary topic of â€˜World Class Universities & Universal Higher Education: Can We Have It All?â€™ was the theme of the latest Education Policy Dialogue, organized by Education Forum Sri Lanka and held on Saturday 15th August 2020. The webinar provided insights and discussed challenges that would of much use to policymakers, university administrators and academics in charting the future of the Sri Lankan university system. It examined challenges to the competitiveness of Sri Lankaâ€™s universities in the world of tertiary education and the way forward for Sri Lanka to enhance the quality of its universities in order to achieve the twin targets of widening the reach of university education throughout Sri Lanka and making the country a regional hub for knowledge.
Held on August 15, 2020, via Zoom Video: Click here PresentationsFunding and Management (Mr. Anura Dissanayake, Secretary, Ministry of Higher Education)Global Rankings (Dr. Nicholas Ruwan Dias & Niresh Eliatamby, Managing Partners, Cogitaro.com)Research and Graduate Education (Prof. Veranja Karunarathna, University of Peradeniya and Vice Chancellor, SLINTEC Academy) Summary: PDF available here (Written by Niresh Eliatamby and Dr.
Education Forum Sri Lanka (EFSL) invites applications for the position of researcher, part-time or full-time at mid or junior level. EFSL is an independent platform that engages with experts and stakeholders from multiple sectors in order to catalyze policy reforms in education using evidence-based interventions. Our goal is equitable access, child-friendly processes, and quality outcomes in education in Sri Lanka through the accountability of actors and institutions responsible. Founder Members are Sujata Gamage, Tara de Mel, and Nisha Arunatilake. Responsibility: Work with Dr.
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Held on June 27, 2020, via Zoom Watch video here. Presentation: Early Childhood is defined as period between 0-5 years 0-2 is home-based care and the Ministry of Health has on-going programs using Public Health Nurses, Public Health Midwives and the Medical Officers of Health 3 to 5 years is the period that ECE usually operates Golden 1000 Days in a childâ€™s life is critical, because brain growth is maximum during this period. About 85% of brain growth of an entire life happens during early childhood. Maximum neuroplasticity, myelination, connectivity through synaptogenesis and differentiation of brain cells occur best in the Golden 1000 day period. Unless stimulation and nutrition are adequate during this period, brain growth will falter.
Held on June 13, 2020, via Zoom Video: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=1021915811544559 Presentation: Dr. Sujata Gamage presentedÂ “An Assessment FrameworkÂ with Built-in Accountability for Reforming the National Examination System in Sri Lanka”.
In Sri Lanka, with a population of 22 million, 11,000 schools closed on March 12th affecting 4.5 million students. The situation in Indonesia parallels Sri Lanka though Indonesia’s population at 268 million is ten times that of Sri Lanka. According to a World Bank blog, in Indonesia, over 530,000 schools closed affecting 65 million students. The situation is forcing a very fast and broad increase in the countryâ€™s use of EdTech, which is expected to have lasting effects on the market.
Held on May 16, 2020, via Zoom. Video: https://www.facebook.com/EduForumLK/videos/726016001268499/ Presentation (Who has Access?): https://lirneasia.
It is heartening to note that the decision to reopen schools on May 11th has been reconsidered positively. Exposing 4.3 million school children to a potential resurgence of the virus with no clear plan would have been dangerous, when we still havenâ€™t had a straight 48-72 hours without a single Covid patient being reported. Sanitizing all schools effectively would need time and resources. Overcrowding of classrooms in urban/popular schools, inability to implement safe-distancing methods and lack of adequate facilities for hand-hygiene, are all reasons to consider before announcing re-opening.
Capitalizing on the need to switch to distance learning (DL)Â Sri Lanka like all countries had to find alternate methods of education when school closure became a necessity during Covid 19. Many countries in the West & East seamlessly switched to e-learning & online education, since their curricula & syllabuses were already posted on the education websites, and e-learning had been practiced interspersed with face-to-face learning in class, even before Covid. Good example is Singapore, where once a week, e-learning had been a practice for several grades. So an abrupt and total switch was effortless for them. Whatâ€™s the story with Sri Lanka?