Earlier editions of text books containing grammatical and factual errors have been included in the stock of books that have been distributed for next year, Ceylon Teachers’ Union General Secretary Joseph Stalin has charged.
“Among these the most glaring errors are in the Grades 6-11 Sinhala and Maths textbooks and the Grade 9 History book,” he said.
Maths books contain mathematical errors, unrealistic geometrical figures, exercises that cannot be solved because there is insufficient data, language shortcomings, wrong definitions and wrong concepts.
The Sinhala books contain mis-spellings, grammatical and factual errors.
Mr. Stalin charged that this situation arose because of the government policy of reusing textbooks. He said although corrected editions have been issued, the uncorrected books are still being circulated.
He also charged that in some textbooks the correction procedure had been stopped midway.
In the Grade 9 History book, in the chapter on the Sri Lankan independence struggle, comments that have racial undertones have been included, he said.
Mr. Stalin said in spite of objections by Catholic priests regarding the chapter in this same text book on how Roman Catholism was spread in the country, no amendments have been made. Following the complaint, he said, President Mahinda Rajapaksa had said he would appoint a committee to look into the matter but hardly anything has been done he said.
However, the Commissioner General of the Educational Publications, W.M.N.J. Pushpakumara said the books printed by the private sector contained some mistakes but those were corrected and re-printed. Only the books of Grade 6 and 10 contained errors and a new set of books would be printed for 2012.
Defending the practice of reusing old textbooks he said, Rs. 800 million was saved by this and added that corrections of the books have been sent to the principals of each school to distribute among the students. “We have reminded them from time-to-time regarding this,” he said.
In addition, he said, subject committees have been appointed in schools consisting of teachers who have to go through the books and if they came across mistakes, would inform the Educational Publications Department.
|Grade 6 Maths book: This last sentence should have read that there are 2 ways to solve the problem, instead it says 400.