‘Govt. doing away with external degrees to help pvt. universities’



By Dasun Edirisinghe


The Centre for Graduates (CFG) of the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP) yesterday alleged that the government had planned to prune external degrees offered by universities countrywide by 80 per cent to help foreign private universities scheduled to set up their branches here.


Organising Secretary of the CFG Dhammika Munasinghe said that nearly 300,000 students sat the GCE Advanced Level examination every year, but only 21,000 could be accommodated in the existing universities.


"Most of the students who fail to gain university admission opt for external degrees," he said, adding now the government was getting ready to violate their right to learn by doing away with external degrees.


According to their calculations, on average there were 5,000 students who register for external degree courses with the Ruhuna University each year, but with the new plan only 800 could register, Munasinghe said.


He said that the government was to curtail external degree courses in 2010 but it had to shelve its plan in view of resistance offered by the university students.


Munasinghe said that the government had already directed universities countrywide to cut down on the registration for external degrees.


"The Higher Education Ministry is planning to set up ‘education zones’ to facilitate foreign universities to set up their branches here," Munasinghe said, adding that the ministry’s hidden plan was to attract students, who could not enter a government university, to those universities instead of allowing them to register for external degrees.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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