The child-friendly schools programme under the governmentís combined national campaign to develop 5,000 elementary schools and 1,000 secondary schools is now nearing completion and will be ready for use by May 5, states the Ministry of Economic Development.
For developing 5,000 elementary schools into child friendly schools 3322 schools representing the 25 districts were selected. The funds allocated for this is Rs. 1,661 million. Already 1,678 schools selected under the first stage have been completed at a cost of Rs. 839 million. But its total value is twice the amount allocated.
The Economic Development Ministry is directing the programme to develop the 5,000 primary schools and 1,000 secondary schools with the assistance of the Education Ministry and Provincial Education Ministries. The maximum amount allocated under this programme for projects begun by school development societies is Rs.500,000.
The first stage was successfully launched in August last year. Steps are being taken for the supply of power and water, developing toilet and health facilities, building fences and providing schools with gates, repairing and painting existing school buildings, distribution of perennial economic crop seedlings to parents under the Divi Neguma National Programme, making the school ground a model home garden, preparing the schoolís name board, arranging rooms for grade 1 students to do handwork, building childrenís playgrounds and doing only essential repairs to teachersí hostels.
The objective of this is to minimize the competition to admit children to popular schools and also to provide them with a quality education after developing material resources and other facilities in schools.
This is a further step in improving Sri Lankaís education the level of which the UNís Human Resources Report has recognized as being among the highest in Asia.