Ensure independence of all education institutes -Archbishop

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe with Archbishop of Colombo His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith at the ceremony to celebrate Catholic Teachers’ Day and the 25th anniversary of the Catholic Teachers’ Association at St Joseph’s College, Colombo 10. Emeritus Archbishop of Colombo Oswald Gomis, National Director of Catholic Schools Fr. Ivan Perera, Auxiliary Bishops Maxwell Silva and Emmanuel Fernando are also in the picture. Pictures courtesy Prime Minister’s Media

Archbishop of Colombo His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith yesterday urged the government to remove long continued political interference over the academia and ensure the independence of all education institutes in the country.

Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith also pointed out that making education institutes independent will immensely contribute to the development of a country as well.

The Archbishop of Colombo Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith further pointed out that a government exists to take policy decisions and present those policies to school administrations and not to influence or interfere.

“There was a time when a politician made a teacher bow before a student. If a regional- level politician, for example, interferes with everything that takes place in a school, that school loses its independence. Such political interference undermine the value of teaching as a profession as well. At the end, such institutes will not create a just and disciplined society,” Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith pointed out.

“This is the reason why the educational authorities must ensure the independence of all education institutions including schools. We request the government not to allow politicians to interfere in school administration,” Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith pointed out.

Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith was speaking yesterday at a ceremony held at St. Joseph’s College, Colombo to celebrate the Catholic Teachers' Day and the 25th anniversary of the Catholic Teachers’ Association.

He also requested the government to prevent the conducting of tuition classes on Poya days and Sunday mornings.

Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith pointed out that “This request comes from all religious leaders in the country.

“The children should be given time to participate in Dhamma schools and Sunday schools, or else there will be no enhancement in their spiritual traits,” Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith said. His Eminence also pointed out that schoolchildren are deprived of a carefree childhood due to the competitive education system and numerous private tuition classes.

“I have seen schoolchildren in uniforms waiting to go home even at night. They are not given time to play like we did in our days,” Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith said.

Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith also commended the “Nearest School is the Best School” national programme, pointing out that parents face many hardships in trying to provide for their children’s education.

“Add to this challenge, there is a school van mafia as well. Apart from paying money for their children’s education, parents now have to pay for the school transport as well. When we were children, we walked to school,” he pointed out.

Archbishop Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith requested the Education Minster to continue with the excellent processes carried out by the government to improve the education system in Sri Lanka.

 

 

 

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