To increase GDP per capita from

USD 4,000 to USD 12,000

Sri Lanka at present
(As a percentage of students 19-23 years)
Goal for 2020-2025
(Student enrollment)
Times increase or decrease to reach goal
Number of students who graduated from Government Universities (2017) 7% 25,200 16.67% 60,000 Increase by 2.38 times
Number of students who graduated from local private universities (2017) 4.1% 15,000 29.23% 105,228 Increase by 7.1 times
Number of students who study abroad 4.1% 15,000 4.1% 15,000
Number of students who completed the vocational training (2017) 22% 79,200 40% 144,000 Increase by 1.8 times
Unskilled labor contribution to the labor force (housemaids, day labourers, etc.) 62.8% 225,600 10% 36,000 Decrease by 6.28 times
Students per annum 360,000 360,000
  • Increase the current number of students doing A/L from 218,191 to 300,000 and ensure majority of A/L students do STEM subjects.
  • Ensure 360,000 students per annum sit for O/Ls.
  • Develop 771 schools under provincial councils to match the standards of national schools with fully fledged facilities.
  • Select schools with sufficient land and build new infrastructure in order to increase student capacity by 1,500.

Action Plan

  1. Allocate an additional budget of Rs. 200 billion with a 10% annual increment for primary, university and technical and vocational education.
  2. Introduce five new types of biscuits for the five days of the week which can be obtained free of charge by producing the coupon provided under the precision poverty reduction programme for school children who cannot afford breakfast. These new types of biscuits also to be made available for purchase through markets.
    Also, continue the provision of free text books, and further provide, school uniforms, socks and shoes from preschool to secondary school level, through the precision poverty reduction programme.
  3. Fund private sector to build, standardise and upgrade preschools.
  4. Facilitate video-based and other necessary teacher training for pre-schools.
  5. Develop 771 schools under provincial councils with fully-fledged facilities to match the standards of national schools.
    • 2 schools each from the 276 divisional councils (552 schools).
    • 3 schools each from the 41 urban councils (123 schools).
    • 4 schools each from 24 municipal councils (96 schools).

    Same national level popular school names and management to be followed at these 771 schools.

    Select schools with sufficient land and build infrastructure in order to increase student capacity by 1,500. As a result, in all 771 schools, capacity will increase by an average of 1,500 students resulting in a total increase by 1,156,500 students.

    Following which, competition for grade 1 student entrance will be reduced from current 80,000 students to 0 students.

  6. Ensure availability of branches of two popular schools in each district.
    In total, 50 schools will be built, each with a capacity of 6,000 students, increasing total capacity by 300,000 students.
  7. Encourage establishment of international schools through 0% corporate tax and 0% VAT incentives to encourage professionals to serve outstation.
    At present English-speaking professionals are reluctant to work outstation due to the lack of English medium schools for their children.
  8. Encourage establishment of private universities, excluding medical colleges, through 0% corporate tax and 0% VAT incentives to achieve the goal of 50% university degree holders from total students per annum (Sri Lanka at present has 360,000 students per annum).
  9. Introduce an online portal excluding data charges, which contains instructional videos for all school subjects.
  10. Utilise video tutorials to teach students life and social interaction skills.
  11. Provide career counselling for all A/L students

  12. Snow

    (Source: Department of Police)

    Sri Lanka had 99,036 unconvicted prisoners in 2017, of whom 6.8% had no schooling, 52.9% had studied only up to grade 5 and 85.1% had studied only up to grade 8. However, the total percentage of unconvicted prisoners who passed A/Ls and progressed in education beyond A/Ls was only 3.1%.

    Therefore, if every child is educated at least up to A/Ls, 50% of prisons can be shut down.

  13. Geo-tag the 5,000 children who do not attend school and increase the income of their families through help desks under the precision poverty reduction programme, so that these children are able to go to school. Thereby reducing the number of students who do not attend school from 5,000 to 0.
  14. Decrease school dropouts from 30,000 to 0 through precision poverty reduction and implementation of required social development initiatives.
  15. Identify schools that require immediate refurbishment from the 10,194 Government schools across the Island.
  16. Identify and closely monitor schools with low numbers of students and teachers.
    • 1,486 schools with less than 50 students
    • 1,560 schools with 50-100 students
    • 3,133 schools with fewer than 9 teachers
  17. Ensure all schools have access to clean water and toilet facilities.
  18. Introduce 0% VAT and 0% corporate tax on private education.

    This tax benefit scheme will be guaranteed for the next 25 years to build private schools and private international schools.

  19. Open branches of popular schools in the 6 main corridors to Colombo – Galle, Piliyandala, Homagama, Kaduwala, Nittambuwa, and Negombo. This would reduce road traffic and raise standards of schools outside Colombo.
  20. Double dose of Mathematics from Grade 6 for underperforming students by replacing time allocated for another subject.
  21. From Grade 6 onwards, introduce the option of learning Science in English.
  22. Encourage Grade 10 and 11 students to choose commerce subjects for personal financial management.
  23. Recognise English as the “link language” of Sri Lanka.
    E.g. Provide Sinhalese students studying Tamil language the option of studying English language during that period. Likewise, provide Tamil students studying Sinhala language the option of studying English language during that period.
  24. Ensure availability of teacher training and learning videos for students for all subjects taught from Grade 1 to 13.
  25. Encourage the selection of Science, Mathematics, Commerce, Biology and Engineering streams for A/L to match job market trends.
  26. Increase student enrolment in Grade 12 and 13 from 210,000 to 300,000, while increasing capacity at schools with Science and Technology labs.
  27. Create a portal to monitor the quality of the district level school education system.
    The portal includes general school statistics (no. of schools, no. of teachers, and no. of students, both urban and rural) and a performance dashboard (dropout rate, schools with functional toilets, schools with drinking water, etc.).
  28. Form a committee to ensure quality of education across Government, private, international and other schools and pre-schools.
  29. Integrate ICT into education, increase the number of computers, and ensure Internet connectivity in schools.
  30. Ensure availability of ICT-related teaching materials through the online portal.
  31. Share instructional videos among teachers on methods of teaching ICT.
  32. Utilise video conferencing to conduct simultaneous live classes for rural schools which suffer from a shortage of teachers.
  33. Develop an online application system for teachers featuring their qualifications and schools with job vacancies.
  34. Launch a teacher training certification programme.
  35. Update student vacancies from Grade 6 to Grade 13 in every school on an online portal.
  36. Create a website with athletic records from district, national, regional, and international level and update with the current status of each district’s student athletes.
  37. Establish an online academy with training videos, for students to train for sports and improve their performance to reach international levels.
  38. Develop existing school cricket grounds.
  39. Make supplementary Math classes compulsory after O/L, either in school or via online learning.
  40. Allow students who have passed six subjects but failed Math in their O/L, to continue with their A/L studies while attending additional Math classes to re-sit the O/L Math exam.

    Based on the pass rate for their O/L Math, students can attempt the final A/L exam.

  41. Predict the dropout risk at school through the analysis of data such as attendance, performance and behaviour.
  42. Allocate a period in the school timetable for student engagement programmes such as weekly arts and crafts programmes, sports, reading and storytelling to increase student enjoyment at school.
  43. Provide after-school tutoring programmes in key subject areas to students at risk of dropping out.
  44. Allocate funds for students at risk of dropping out, in the form of bursaries and scholarships.
  45. Upgrade school library facilities.
  46. Introduce virtual libraries with free access.
  47. Introduce project-based STREAM curriculum (Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) in primary and secondary schools.

    Students to learn in teams and Math, Science, Reading and Engineering are integrated into each lesson.

  48. Implement mandatory health lessons where students, especially young girls, are taught about menstruation and proper menstrual hygiene.
  49. Ensure availability of emergency sanitary products and proper toilet facilities with sanitary napkin disposal systems.
  50. Promote education of students, teachers and parents about menstruation hygiene to reduce the stigma around menstruation.
  51. Ensure all teachers have adequate first-aid training and include first-aid training in the school curriculum.
  52. Prioritise establishment and upgrading of girls’ schools. In addition, provide bursaries for girls to encourage education.
  53. Introduce mandatory environmental education on being eco-friendly, reducing waste and recycling as part of the Geography and Science syllabi.
  54. Allow children of Sri Lankan families who are living abroad to attend local schools and sit for local exams when they come to Sri Lanka.
  55. Introduce curriculum resources for early learning, primary and secondary students to promote reconciliation and strengthen knowledge and understanding of history and culture.
  56. Ensure availability of science laboratories for schools that teach up to O/L.
  57. Increase science stream schools by 1,000 from 1,029 to 2,029 schools.
  58. Take part in Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) to evaluate the current standard of the education system.
  59. Provide duty-free permits to owners of old school buses and vans that are over 15 years old.
  60. Provide 2,000 mini-school buses to villages where children walk over 2 km to access the main road to reach their schools.
  61. Reduce the waiting time for local O/L exam results to 2 months.

    Introduce pre-A/L classes for all students awaiting their O/L results.

    Current waiting time to obtain results in Sri Lanka is 4 months. An additional 2 months is spent at home until A/L schooling starts. Therefore, a total 6 months of student time is spent in an unproductive manner.

  62. Reduce the waiting time for A/L exam results to 2 months.

    Current the waiting time in Sri Lanka is 4 months.

  63. Reduce the waiting time for university entrance after A/Ls to 6 months.

    Current the waiting time in Sri Lanka is 17 months, including 4 months waiting for results.