Education Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris said that due to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic in the country, school education is currently being carried out through online platforms but steps are being taken to establish ‘Regional Learning Centres’ (RLCs) for students who are unable to obtain such facilities.
He was speaking at a press conference held at the Government Information Department yesterday.
The Ministry of Education is already working to provide education to children through the methods of ‘E Thaksalawa’ and
‘Guru Gedara’. The Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) has made arrangements to ensure that e-Thaksalawa does not cost any money when accessing the website of the Ministry of Education. It facilitates children to learn all lessons from Grade One to Grade 13. All these lessons are facilitated for children to study in Sinhala and Tamil Mediums.
“Furthermore, the e-Thaksalawa methodology has enabled children to self-study as well as facilitate a learning Management System (LMS) for teachers to create virtual classrooms and teach children. E-Thaksalawa contains about 65,000 lessons and gets 250,000 hits per day. About 3.5 million students have accessed this facility in the last month,” the Minister added.
‘Gurugedara’ Educational Methodology Lessons are taught to children in Sinhala medium through the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation’s (SLRC) ‘Eye Channel’ and the ‘Nethra Channel ‘ in the Tamil medium. Over 5,000 lessons are broadcast 16 hours a day, five days a week for Grade 3 to Grade 13.
Students who do not have adequate facilities to learn online have been instructed to form Regional Learning Centres. “Through this programme, we hope to provide children the opportunity to come together in small groups and receive education in line with health guidelines. These centres should be operational at the provincial level from 7.30 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. Each of these centres must have at least 10 computers or tablets to provide education through e-Thaksalawa. We also hope to appoint committees at the zonal level to look into and regulate the proper implementation of this programme,” he said.