ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Vol. 42 - No 13

Grade 1 admissions: More proposals, no decisions

By Isuri Kaviratne

The Education Ministry and the Joint Committee of the Past Pupils’ Associations (JCPPA) were still holding discussion yesterday regarding Grade 1 admissions ahead of tomorrow’s Supreme Court deadline for submission. Manohara de Silva, representing the past pupils in the discussions said their proposals were based on those suggested by the Chief Justice where no marks will be given to the parents’ profession or educational qualifications though the clause of judging the suitability of the child would be retained.

Mr. de Silva said the Ministry was formulating a methodology to evaluate the suitability of the child. “The Ministry said that they had experts to look into it. We too had a suggestion, a simple test such as identifying colours, objects, simple movements and etc. But as the Ministry officials said they have experts, we decided to leave it to them,” he said.

He said the Ministry had not come up with new or clear proposals but were similar to those they had come up with last week. In the latest twist to the confusion over the admissions, Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva considering the proposals forwarded by the Ministry of Education ordered Ministry secretary Ariyaratne Hewage to re-amend the circular according to the judgment given by the Supreme Court previously however, without giving marks for the parent’s profession or educational qualifications. The issue came up in courts when five past pupils associations filed petitions against the proximity criteria on which students were to be selected for year one admissions.

The Chief Justice noted that by widening the area, the choice of the school would be better and people in suburbs too would be evaluated under the same guidelines as those applying from the cities. The Chief Justice said that if the number of applications the school gets tallied with the number of vacancies, there won’t be any problem and even if it didn’t tally according to this new system there would be no problem as the extra applications will be transferred to the next best school as the applicant has to put down his/her choice of schools in the application.

JCPPA media spokesperson Dr. A. Rabel said they came up with the proposal to give equal marks to the residents of the selected area so that competition would be less. He said the Education Ministry had proposed to reintroduce the quota system which was rejected by the Chief Justice.

Top to the page

Copyright 2007 Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka.