Sunday pvt. tuition ban for A/L students unfair – Grero



by Zacki Jabbar


The ban on private tuition classes on Sundays, by the Southern and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Councils was flawed, UNP Colombo District MP and Educationist Mohan Lal Grero said yesterday.


Addressing a news conference in Colombo, he said that they were opposed to the restriction being applied to Advanced Level students.


"Advanced Level students are at a crucial stage of their career. All of them would like to enter university and it would not be proper to curtail their efforts at spending extra time seeking to better their results," he said. "Any student who gets three passes at the Advanced Level examination, was eligible to enter university. But due to the limited intake, only those with the best results can aspire to a State university education. Therefore, it was not fair to apply the ban to Advanced Level students."


It was not everyone who could afford individual or group classes. The majority of students have to attend "Mass Classes," which cater to between 200 to 400 students at a time. For the convenience of outstation students, "Mass Classes" were held on Sunday’s, Grero said.


The number of drop outs from the GCE O/L and A/L stage, was around 300,000. The situation, he said should not be compounded by introducing tuition bans. Vocational training has to be introduced from junior level, so that those who do not perform well at exams have an option to fall back on, he said.


Grero said that banning private tuition on Sundays, was no guarantee that children would attend ‘Dhamma’ classes. Except for a small number of ‘Dhamma’ schools in Colombo, infrastructure was generally poor. The first step to drawing children to ‘Dhamma’ Schools would be to improve basic infrastructure facilities.


A good example of encouraging religious education was found in certain schools, which provide the necessary facilities for Muslim students to perform their Friday Jummah prayers within the school premises, he said.


Grero said that religious education was essential, but if children do not qualify to obtain a decent job, they would become a burden on society and their respective religions as well.


The government should not impose restrictions on private tuition, until such time as it improves the overall standards in schools and the quality of education, he said.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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