Our Schools are in a mess. However a plan to hoodwink people into believing funds have been allocated under the above schools program is another step in this campaign of disinformation, not just misinformation. If one reads what it is all about it is about more toilets, water facilities and protecting the security of the school from fences. After all the Rs500,000 MAX allocated to that is hardly a drop in the bucket, and is CERTAINLY NOT going to make a school good enough so that the current rush to put children into prestigious schools will abate.
Funds are not just needed to build toilets in schools as this Rs3B funding suggests. It should be more like Rs300B over 5 years into state education so we change the direction completely from wasting money on spurious defense, that is defending Sri Lanka from its citizens, as we do not face an external threat. We must use the funds to improve education as the products of a good education, will show an immediate productivity gain in the work place, which no Hambantota Harbour of Airport will ever be able to show!
It is with intention that we must direct our resources where it is needed. Firstly to put at least Rs10B additionally this year to train the teachers. There is no point even thinking about education unless we use the latest techniques of training, and with distance learning and training techniques available it is a matter of using the latest technology to cost effectively spend this money in as short a time as possible to maximize on the resources available to produce the highest reward.
I am at a loss as to why the distance learning techniques are not more widely used in Sri Lanka schools. It is possibly still due to the old fashioned by rote education which we don’t seem to be able to get rid of from our psyche.
To benefit more fully from the resources distance education that many countries and organizations are now engaged in, English is a link language that is essential. I therefore would put emphasis, including financial incentives to train teachers in this area, use English as the language in which these techniques are usually made available, and use it to train the techers.
Once teachers are trained it is relatively easy to train the pupils. The teachers will go through this through their teaching lives, and so will be able to impart this knowledge from one group to the next. Let us get cracking without wasting time!!