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Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, Education Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, and Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs and Policy Planning, Dr. Harsha de Silva at the first ever smart classroom of the Sri Jayawardenepura Vidyalaya Kotte last week. The programme was launched in January this year – Pic courtesy Facebook

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will bring modern technology transforming education over the next decade, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said at the opening of a hi-tec ‘smart classroom’ at one of the country’s oldest western-style schools.
Wickremesinghe visited the model classroom with students equipped with tablets and wi-fi connections at Sri Jayawardenepura Maha Vidyalalaya in Kotte, in an initiative started by Deputy Minister Harsha de Silva, who represents the area in parliament.
“This is a pilot project,” Prime Minister told a gathering outside the classroom. “It brings cloud technology, tablet devices to the classroom.”
“We want to roll this out to the education system over the next decade. We also want to give similar technology to vocational education.”
Deputy Minister Harsha de Silva says the teachers of the classroom were trained in Australia.
The school was started in 1820-22 originally as a place to teach Anglican priests.
“It was kind of a seminary school,” Prime Minister Wickremesinghe said. “Later, lay students were also taught.”
The school’s students went to higher studies in India where the first Western-style University was set up. Governor Maitland had helped two students from the Obeysekera family to go to Oxford University, he said.
In 1834 the then British Governor Wilmot Horten had visited the school and next year he had helped start the Colombo Academy as a public school, which later became the Royal College.
Prime Minister Wickremesinghe said students of the school were able to learn, English, Latin and Greek, geography and British history.