Education is a primary feature of all human societies today. It is a fundamental human right and a fundamental feature of our democracy. Everyone has the right to education and access to education (Article 26 – Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948). In1945, education was established as a ‘free’ service, to be made accessible to all persons irrespective caste, creed, gender, ethnicity, gender, language and region. This brought about a near social revolution in the country. Free education has provided social mobility to ordinary people, people from all parts of the country. It brought about a renaissance in the arts creating a strong sense of belonging among its people in different ways. Education supports all professional and bureaucratic services contributing to the health of the country. This system has supported artists, writers, teachers, engineers, doctors, dentists, vets, architects, agriculturalists, entrepreneurs, lawyers, accountants and so many more professionals. We all need schools of quality for our children. Universities are where so many of our children aspire to go to.
Government Spending Decreases…
Yet, today, public education is under severe stress from many quarters. We are concerned about current government policy toward education and higher education which is reflected by the proportion of funds that the government allocates for education. GDP is a good indicator of this. From 2005 onwards, government spending on education has been fast decreasing. When the current President came into office, in 2005, the government’s expenditure on education was 2.9% of the GDP. Today, it has fallen to a miserable 1.9% of the GDP.
The cut in investment in higher education since 2005 is even more alarming. Of the paltry investment in education, the government spent only 0.52% of the GDP on the Universities. It declined to 0.27% of the GDP in 2010 and even lower in 2012. It is important for the government to increase spending on education and strengthen free education so that it flourishes. It is important for the government to increase spending on higher education so that universities and other places can become centres of excellence and provide the highest level of service to the state, private sector and the people.
…while interference in schools and education increases
Universities and schools are centres of education and should be free of interference by external forces so that people can learn, teach and think without fear. Society benefits through new thoughts, ideas and knowledge . External interference destroys learning. Sri Lankan schools and universities have seen increased levels of political interference from authorities in recent times. This trend needs to be curbed as it is destroying the culture of critical thinking and knowledge that should take place in all centres of education.
With the above concerns in mind, we ask for greater investment in education and for the preservation of a free and healthy system of education so that: in a nurturing environment.
- Schools need not be shut down;
- Teacher education and training will be strengthened;
- Qualified teachers shall be retained in all schools irrespective of location;
- Universities will increase student numbers;
- Universities will attract, recruit and retain the most qualified people
- Universities will provide education of a very high standard to a large number of people
- Increased allocation for all sectors of education and an expenditure of 6% of the GDP on education in two years. If we can achieve this, we would be able to strengthen the entire educational sector and enhance quality of delivery to very great heights.
- Preserve the autonomy of schools and universities from undue and personalized political interference. They should be allowed to maintain and improve their roles as centres where educationists and academics can collaborate with others in serving the people.
- The state has a responsibility toward the people where education is concerned and that all educational reforms should go through a consultative process with concerned sections of the people.
~ FUTA ~
To sign the petition click here
China Doll / July 7, 2012
Good statement! But these are very modest proposals. The first demand should have been for the two clowns who are education ministers to RESIGN since they are the biggest impediment to addressing the crisis in education in Lanka at this time. They cannot speak2 straight sentences in English which is the Language of research in the world, so how to turn Lanka into a ‘Knowledge HUB”?!
Also, there is a need for a more funds. 6 percent is not enough. 20 percent of GDP would be more appropriate at this time since the education sector is in a huge crisis and huge investment in the sector is needed to rescue it.
The crisis in the University must be COMPREHENSIVELY and HUMANELY addressed. Not only the Dons and support staff, but the students should be treated better. There needs to be a study on University Student life and conditions and a needs assessment done to develop a blueprint to improve the lot of students who now behave like beasts because many have to live like beasts in awful conditions and work surrounding. Better accommodation, the cafetaris and libraries and work environment improved and better facilities provided. One of the reasons that the students rag and behave like sub-humans is the appalling facilities provided to students who live in sub-human conditions.
Currently, 20 percent of the budget is spent on militarizing Sri Lanka even there is no discernible security threat now that the LTTE has been destroyed as a fighting force. These funds a now being spent to keep safe the Rajapakse family that is looting Lanka. The rajapakse bros are paranoid and scared of regime change. These funds should be diverted to education now that its 3 years since war ended.
suz / July 8, 2012
futa members get double paid by gosl and ngo.let us play for money few days.
manike / July 13, 2012
FUTA is talking about the very thing they are destroying the FREE EDUCATION. How many of our undergraduates are idling because FUTA is preventing uni lecturers doing their duty. Earlier it was the non-academic staff and now it is the Uni lecturers who are on strike. There is no FREE EDUCATION or any eduction in the state universities since 4th June 2012.
Dinuk / July 8, 2012
CD is dead right! FUTA needs to develop a COMPREHENSIVE PROGRAM in dialogue with disenchanted STUDENTS to rescue the education sector, build it up, and turn Lanka into a knowledge hub – capable of deposing mahinda rajapakse tout suite! Appropriate the spin and put it to good use!
Thus while on strike, FUTA should use its free time to develop a WHITE PAPER & BLUE PRINT to rescue the education sector. They are the EXPERTS and knowledge producers in Lanka and should prove it! With a clear plan to develop the education sector they can show they are serious about having the country’s best interests as much as legitimate self-interest at heart – in taking this bold STRIKE ACTION! MARCH ON FUTA – YOU HAVE OUT SUPPORT!
CW / July 7, 2012
I do not support the demands of “Paraputugami Deshadrohiyo”.
Tharuka / July 7, 2012
Whether education is private or goverment, everyone has right to higher education. Government has a responsibilty to assure quality of universities. all over the world there are private universities including China, Veitnam. Some of universitie teacher oppose private universities (Most of them are from Art faculties). They do not know some of world well known and academically sound universities are private universities. Some of university teachers(lecturers) got their master or PhD from private universities. Further, all most all (including state owned) universities charge money for education.University teacher’s demand for close-down Malabe Medical faculty is point less. State universities also charge money for their master degree. Goverment should introduce quality assurance regulations for heigher education and all heigher education institute should have more than 3 faculties and adequate physical and human resources. Please be rational. Don’t act as uneducated politician. People think university teachers do not have brain. Try to do some research and get publish in SCI or SSCI journals. Show to others you are also talented people.
Ajith Nissanka / July 7, 2012
Your comment on private universities is misleading. I agree that private universities play a vital role in higher education. However education in the private universities should be open to vast majority of the public. Once all qualifies students have access to higher education then there are equal opportunities. Everybody knows that Malabe private university is open only just for the super rich. that is why low qualified students was able to get in to the college. Present administrators try to make sweetheart deals by attempting to give equal status to the degree awarded from this private college as these individuals have tons of money to spend. That is what these FUTA is trying point out. of course they have a clear point in this regard. Yes we can establish private universities but at the same time the government should establish a body to facilitate the public to make it more affordable. You may set up as student loan system to make any qualified individual afford the college. Then majority get access and get equal opportunities to higher education. We should join hands with FUTA and stop the privatization of education as it leads to crony capitalism. You may demand to set up private colleges with government involvement to make everybody affordable to private education.
Mr. N Jayasuriya / July 13, 2012
Stat owned universities do not charge any fee from undergraduates for a degree. The Malabe Medical College is not set up following proper procedures and some of the medical students have not got even 3 simple passes at Advanced Level. It’s a known fact that there are many medical students who fail at their exams in the state medical colleges as their capabilities are tested to the limit. The Malabe Medical College(MC) has recruited some Advance Level students who sat for Arts subjects at the Advanced Level. When students who sat in the Biological Science Stream fail in the medical college, one wonders how the arts students are fairing at Malabe MC. It is imperative unlike in other degrees for a student to follow the MBBS degree, the Medical College should be attached to a Teaching Hospital for Clinical Rotations and Professorial Wards. The Malabe Medical College has only a shell of a hospital although there are six batches of students who don’t have any experience with patients in a hospital. Therefore considering the welfare of the ignorant general public the government should not consider Malabe MC as a legitimate degree awarding Medical college.
bala balaraman / July 7, 2012
people in charge of education are themselves are not educated, and therefore they have no appreciation of educaing others.
abey / July 7, 2012
This is a Curse coming on to Srilankan Education!!! Think Wisely as Iam stating this way ….The Teachers should be Wise in any Country!
Universities… close downn…. No classes..No Lectures for weeks ..
For Months in some Universities in the Island for many years.
Who will be benefitted out of your silly Strikes… Work to route…
Innocent poor children of Srilanks. Their Parents are stuggling to get them Qulified people of the Country. Mother Lanka is waiting to accept Intelligent crowd of People to come Out of Universities..But Curse!!! Why … the Reason is Now every one watch what other countries doing.. what other people are doing… Not interested of trying intheir own.
I feel very sorry about SRILANKA. for not giving out talented , intelligent skillful crowd of Srilankans out of Universities & schools. We shold think about our Past. we should be proud of our ancestors. We should encourage our children to do the same. Let Talented educate well & get their skills workedout for the benefit of the country.
In general these Some headles authorities are spoiling the Education System. Some responsible person shouls handle this issue.
Without interference to what happens at present.. there will be a mass disaster may happen in the future.
PLEASE DONT SPOIL the SL EDUCATION FUNDAMENTALS, SYSTEM, OUTCOME<
If all of you hoping for a Greater Srilanka ahead.
MAY GOD BLESS SRILANKA!!!
Mohamed Marzook / July 7, 2012
I strongly support the stand taken by the FUTA as they are not only demanding better terms for their profession but also, for the first time in the trade union history of Sri Lanka, are demanding for a better deal for the better development of education in the country.
Patta Pal / July 7, 2012
The fault is both of the lack of administration of the tertiary sector in a professional manner, and shortage of resources in the tertiary sector by the Govt. There is no clear education policy for this sector.
Whilst the academics have some grouses, I believe they also must take some of the blame. There are 600 overseas, who have not returned to their posts, as they find pumping petrol in the west more remunerative! If they went on sabbatical it is their DUTY to return, not with hold their services because they are not happy with their conditions back home.
A partnership of Govt. UGC, Academics, non-academics and Students is required to agree on a basis to go forward. The syllabus has to change, the standard has to improve, the students have to value their studies and be more focused, and the govt. must improve the basics so that the state sector can compete with the private sector, which is head and shoulders in front of them now. Today money is the only passport to a good education and not brains alone. What has happened to the quality of free education?
The universities must produce 20,000 productive and employable graduates a year with a high standard. NOT give all who qualify a place in the Universities. The latter is an impossibility for a country with Sri Lanka’s resources.
Mo / July 7, 2012
University lecturers are responsible for research. They do not need to make signature for attendance. Average lecturer hours per week is less than 10-12 hours. Other people for more than 40 hours per week. Why university lecturers got less lectuer hours? They have to do research and advance the knowledge of their field, introduce insitutional, eviornment, business, law and regulations or social culture of Sri Lanka to world. Unfortunately, these lectueres haven’t done research. Research is major component of universities and it is important in university ranking. These university teacher ask for independent administratives for universities and give right of administrative power to hand of these university lecturers. We all know when do new recruitments for academic staff some professors give peference treatment for their female students and sometime ignored applicant with PhD and research background. We know how they get their first class and get the academic position.Sri Lankan university recuitment scheme should be changed and it should give more preference to person with PhD and research publications. Promotion should also mainly base on research.
Punchinilame / July 7, 2012
The Regime of the 4 Brothers has only one immediate goal – everthing
to be done to establish a fully fledged Dictatorship – named more
cunningly as Democratic Dictatorship, in the long run.
Education and its ramifications are a hindarance to the Regimes agenda.
Short budgeting is an easy way to to stumble the Education sector. The
Trade Union action therefore must be directed to regime change and
here lies the test. Yet some fools will support the Regime and the
strike will be a failure.
Harry White / July 7, 2012
Look through the cream coated demands. Its nothing but increasing the salaries and more money for lecturers pockets. I have not heard of any country that increasing salaries over 20% for any organisation. Specially in this time. Have you ? A free school education, free university education what more ? Mahpola Bursery.. etc.. etc…
See what has happend to Greek by increasing social funding. Nirmal and his JVP gang is distroying the future of our country one way or another.
“They cannot speak2 straight sentences in English which is the Language of research in the world, so how to turn Lanka into a ‘Knowledge HUB”?!” Speaking in English will not make the “Knowledge Hub”. Or will it ? We know what GL Peiris did to Colombo Uni.
Who is Running this BIG SHOW ?????
Its nothing other than “Dr” Nirmal Ranjith Dewasiri. Who got a PhD from a Netherland University funded by NGOs in Netherland and Norway. Being a History professor his works are to convince that Sri Lanka history is a Myth. He was saying this with out any prove but his on his own imagination and interpretation. Please read his articles.
See what he tried to do forming “X Group” with Rohitha Bhashana (Former LTTE Sinhala publication editor) now live in Netherland. He tried to destroy the youth trying to make a Sex Cult.
Didn’t worked well !
Now he is trying to Destroy the future of the youth by disrupting the education system.
Do you thing FUTA will stop even if all the demands were met ? NO
They will stop every future plan in education development in Sri Lanka. Including private universities etc. etc…
Yes I agree with some comments this is another big Political weapon we can use against the governement. but its nothing but a political statements.. just a godd onld political blame game.. no logical answer..
ZELANIKA / July 8, 2012
Can you describe, What Is free in the education system to our poor people,?
Teachers come and teach and go,
Is that free education.?
Did you or your known person tried to admit a child to a school recently.?
If not Ask Somebody who did ?.
Then you will how is the free Education in In SRI LANKA.
Harry White / July 8, 2012
“Can you describe, What Is free in the education system to our poor people,?”
“poor people” “rich people” what ever the term you use. do they have to pay for each term in school ? do they have to pay for each sports they do in the school ???? or is it free ???
Do our Universities charge from the students ?
“Teachers come and teach and go,”
What more do you expect from teachers ?
What kind of free education you are sugesting ?
Compitition to admit a child to “popular schools” has nothing to do with free education.
Sudharshana Mendis / July 14, 2012
“Dr.” Devasiri and his stooges must be thinking that public are fools. Their main demand is for a salary increase and they do not want to stop the strike hence go on adding demands. First it was the salary increment and two others and then it was increased to five demands and now according to the secretary of FUTA it is 41 demands. Although the learned lecturers of the state universities are educated fools the geneal public know what their hidden agendas are.
Patta Pal / July 7, 2012
The Best Academics Sri Lanka has today teach in foreign universities. Why is that? Is that the fault of the Govt. or the system that does not give excellence its due place? I do not know the answer.
How can we get them back? We must promote a culture of excellence where tenured professors hang on too long well after their sell by date, that the younger ones have little chance of promotion until they retire. There are a huge issues in the academic sector, and the above petition does not cover the main issues of favoritism and injustice against talent.
The politicization of academia is also a factor in the poor quality of the teaching. These are not covered in the petition. I think it is a little high handed to bring the real problems of the primary and secondary education system into their dispute, as it has little to do with their fight, and more about gaining public support.
ranbanda / July 7, 2012
I like to know from Harry what G.L did to the Cbo university.Iam surprised he is in any govt position after negotiating the treacherous peace treaty,so much for interlectuals.
rajapakse junta has dreams of dynastic rule and keep the rabble rouses(university crowd) to the minimum so the general population gets more ignorant and only qualified as domestic help to the Arabs.This is the real chintana Steal,murder any opposing view and create a fear psychosis so that every one says Yes Sir to what ever you do our great leader.
Harry White / July 8, 2012
Mr Ranbanada this was the worst time in university history (1988-1994)carried out complete dictatorship in the uni. over 100 of university students expelled from the university. Silenced student bodies not only who had linked with JVP but neutral organisations just because they request lab facilities. Never did a single change to improve the quality of the courses or the university facilities.
“rajapakse junta has dreams of dynastic rule and keep the rabble rouses (university crowd) to the minimum so the general population gets more ignorant and only qualified as domestic help to the Arabs.”
Are you referring rabble rouses ? university crowd ? in other words “Anthre” headed by JVP or FUTA headed by person like Nirmal Ranjith Dewasiri who created X group [Edited out]
Anyways how come this can be achieved by bringing up more international universities, regulating private universities?
I am sure may be either you were not born or you were not in Sri Lanka under the UNP when thousands of University students were killed and burned alive in junctions all over Sri Lanka.
There are many things that we should criticize this government (No law and order, corruption, etc etc..) but there are certain things that we should commend.
Bhathiya Janak / July 7, 2012
While I generally support demands by FUTA, I also should say that the academics in Sri Lankan universities just mark time doing nothing apart from giving a lecture or two a week. This is true for all faculties (including, medical and engineering). How many of them have have research grants? How many of them publish in good journals? But they seek big salaries, positions and other perks. Doctors in medical schools do tons private practice and pp is all what they do. Some do not serve the country to the extent a postman or a policeman does. It is very sad to think about the whole situation.
I think FUTA while trying to fix the countries education system, they should try to fix themselves. It is unfortunate that good brains leave the country leaving behind the revolutionary ones who just talk and talk and talk.
Mohan Samarasekera / July 15, 2012
I do not support demands by FUTA because some demands are not regarding Higher Education or welfare of their members. It is not their duty to ask for a higher allocation of GDP percentage for the whole of education system of the country neglecting their primary duty of teaching the undergraduates. FUTA is trying to Destroy the future of the youth of our country by disrupting the education system. A lecture is only one hour’s duration at the Colombo Medical College and if a student asks a question after a lecture the lecturer tells the student to refer the book and tell him what it is about the next day. Mostly the student has to study on their own. Students at Sri Jayawardena uni do jobs and never follow lectures. They sit for CIMA or ACCA and with that knowledge sit for uni exams.
The uni lecturers have started the continuous strike at the crucial time when Advanced Level exams are at hand. Most of the lecturers especially Moratuwa uni lecturers are very busy giving Physics and Mathematics tution from early morning to late at night. They have tution classes one after the other without keeping any breathing space. There is a saying “make hay while the sun shines”. Uni lecturers are making money as no other time.
Piranha / July 8, 2012
I think it is time the people of Sri Lanka rise up and overthrow this corrupt, murderous and criminal family rule of the Rajapaksas. I salute the courageous protestors. I hope other people who have been affected by this regime’s actions will also protest. The regime has gone too far. Regime change now!
Harry White / July 8, 2012
Great idea Let’s do it.. What next????
Any suggestions ? who would be the next leader the former Army commander General Sarath Fonseka ? or Ranil ? or any one that we can dream of ?
Anura / July 16, 2012
FUTA doesn’t talk about a regime change. For the continuity of the Free Education system of Sri Lanka we think it’s best that FUTA go back to work and do what they are expected to do. If they have grievances the president and Office bearers of FUTA can first discuss with Faculty Board and the Senate of the uni and try to find solutions for their grievances as civilised and cultured human beings.
Sumathy Sivamohan / July 8, 2012
As a University lecturer on trade union action I thought I’d make a comprehensive response to some of the commments. While many lauded our action particularly the one about taking up issues that are
larger than our mere salaries, there are some on this site who
upbraided us and said that we were wasting people’s money and time.
I am really glad that this discussion is taking place and some of you
who responded have raised these questions, in all sincerity I hope.
One thing we have to be clear about in public discussions of this
nature. Please stick to the issues and do not bring in other
unnecessarily extraneous material. Let’s stick to the concerns raised
by FUTA and not meander…….
For those who have slammed us for not doing research and not teaching
I have just a couple of things to say, Off the cuff and a tad flippantly I could say: Look at the class
schedules look at the annual reports of each department and look at
the work of the students and their performance and you will know
whether we as a an academic body has been working or not.
But digging deeper, I would like to say that the issues are deeper than that and at one level intricately tied to funding of the university system. I could also say that our demands are about precisely some of the issues you raise.
Why are the salaries of our junior (probationary) and senior lecturer
grades so low that we are not attracting highly qualified people?
Why is not the government spending more so that there would be greater
investment in research?
Also, if there are teachers not working, we can kind of safely assume,
that they are for the most part, people who are aligned to the government and feel
secure that nothing could happen to them,because they have the
government’s backing. So, that too is our demand. Not to interfere and
politicise the universities in such a way and to the extent that we are forced to serve the politicians and not the people.
About curriculum: non investment in higher education and education
etc. Many of us have written innumerable articles in the newspapers;
How in the guise of employability, current policy of the government leads to devaluing education;
I’d suggest that people explored what is meant by education.
Government policy is geared toward making us all work for profit; if
we follow this trend, we will all be busy trying to make money for
universities and for ourselves, we will forget all about education and
‘educating’ the students. We will be like a buying and selling entity. it would be such a rat race that what we would do is: provide low grade education at high cost to the people. What we are doing is:give a reasonably quality education, on par with international standards and locally relevant at a much lower cost to the people. Is there anything wrong with this objective?
Do you all know how the government is infringing, quite arbitrarily
and nonchalantly, the 1978 University Act? Please find out about it
and how recent moves by the Minister of Higher Education and others are impinging on many
of the clauses that serve to protect universities from the dangers of
becoming just a subordinate body of the Ministry.
The leadership training programme is one such wasteful imposition on the university system.
The Higher Ministry set up a research institute at the University of
Peradeniya in april 2012. To the best of my knowledge and that of my
colleagues at Peradeniya, this was not discussed at the Faculty BOard.
Also, nobody knew anything about the research institute until a few
days ago, on the eve of our strike action, the institute suddenly
became active, and made calls for research grants etc. etc. The
Director of the institute, who does NOT belong to the academic
community is apparently paid 150, 000.a salary higher than that of the
handful of senior professors (many near retirement between 60-65.) I am not absolutely certain of this sum of money, but that can be verified
The funds for this institute are funds diverted from allocation for
research that should have come to the university. In this manner, the
Ministry of Higher Education is weakening university bodies like
Faculty Boards and teh Senate and instead is trying to circumvent the
permanent cadre. This will spell the death of sri lankan universities.
There is much that is flawed in our system. But instead of setting it right, the government is exacerbating the situation.
sumathy / July 8, 2012
a comprehensive response to some of the commments. While many lauded our action particularly the one about taking up issues that are larger than our mere salaries, there are some on this site who upbraided us and said that we were wasting people’s money and time.
I am really glad that this discussion is taking place and some of you who responded have raised these questions, in all sincerity I suppose.
One thing we have to be clear about in public discussions of this nature. Please stick to the issues and do not bring in other unnecessarily extraneous material. Let’s stick to the concerns raised by FUTA.
For those who have salmmed us for not doing research and not teaching I have just a couple of things to say:
Off the cuff and rather flippantly I could say: Look at the class schedules look at the annual reports of each department and look at the work of the students and their performance and you will know whether we as a an academic body has been working or not. But I woudl say that the picture is more complex than this.
Our demands are about precisely some of the issues you raise.
Why are the salaries of our junior (probationary) and senior lecturer grades so low that we are not attracting highly qualified people?
Why is not the government spending more so that there would be greater investment in research?
Also, if there are teachers not working, we can kind of safely assume, that they are for the most part, aligned to the government and feel secure that nothing could happen to them,because they have the government’s backing. So, that too is our demand. Not to interfere and politicise teh universities that we are forced to serve the politicians and not the people.
about curriculum, non investment in higher education and education etc. many of us have written innumerable articles in the newspapers. How in the guise of employability, current policy of the government is trying to devalue education; its value is less than short term, namely no value.
I’d suggest that people explored what is meant by education. Government policy is geared toward making us all work for profit; if we follow this trend, we will all be busy trying to make money for universities and for ourselves, we will forget all about education and ‘educating’ the students. We will be like a buying and selling entity.
Do you all know how the government is infringing, quite arbitrarily and nonchalantly, the 1978 University Act? Please find out about it and how recent moves by the Minister and others are impinging on many of the clauses that serve to protect universities from the dangers of becoming just a subordinate body of the Ministry.
The Higher Ministry set up a research institute at the University of Peradeniya in april 2012. To the best of my knowledge and that of my colleagues at Peradeniya, this was not discussed at the Faculty BOard. Also, nobody knew anything about the research institute until a few days ago, on the eve of our strike action, the institute suddenly became active, and made calls for research grants etc. etc. The Director of the institute, who does NOT belong to the academic community is apparently paid 150, 000.a salary higher than that of the handful of senior professors (many near retirement between 60-65.)
The funds for this institute are funds diverted from allocation for research that should have come to the university. In this manner, the Ministry of Higher Education is weakening university bodies like Faculty Boards and teh Senate and instead is trying to circumvent the permanent cadre. This will spell the death of sri lankan universities.
There is much that is flawed in our system. But government policy is worsening the situation instead of trying to set it aright.
sunila mendis / July 11, 2012
I agree with FUTA Action.Sumathi and FUTA Letters have described very clearly what is happening to education in SL.They are fighting for a greater cause. This is why government supporters are slinging mud at them.If any one has a clear mind it will be quite evident as to what damage this regime is doing to the people of this country.If a country is to prosper priority should be given to educating the young. Education and education alone can lift the country towards real development.The money wasted in bidding for Commonwealth Games, money being spent on building Lotus Towers and numerous unproductive ventures cannot be justified at any cost.What is lacking today is a visionary leadership which can steer the country towards prosperity.The country badly needs a mass movement towards a total change in thinking be it education, Foreign policy, Agriculture etc.
Bandara / July 16, 2012
I do not agree with the FUTA continuous strike. They should be able to resolve the salary hike and other issues without going for a continuous strike. They should think about the undergraduates also not only filling their kitty. There is a committee in FUTA also. Why can’t they resolve their problems with proper authorities without prohibiting all the uni lecturers from educating the students?
L.A Perera / July 16, 2012
FUTA did not suddenly rush in to an all out strike as many people here seem to think.They have been negotiating with the Govt for years.They have been patient when the govt stalled and asked for more time.When authorities ignore /trivialize your problems continuously you have to take action.
You are grossly simplifying matters when you claim that academics are doing this just to get a higher salary.They could have done that easily by going abroad/applying for a lucrative job in the pvt sector.But yes,salaries too have to be increased.Take the case of a probationary lecturer (the most junior permanent position in the academia)whose basic salary is just 27,000.Please compare that to other parellel (state) graduate positions in Sri lanka and elsewhere.
They do not get other perks like fuel/transport/communication etc
University academics SHOULD have a right ro speak against any injustice/malpractise in the education sector if we stii choose to define ourselves as a democracy.That is what this strike is about.
Bandara / July 17, 2012
Not only university academics as a democratic Sri Lanka anybody attached to education has the right to speak on education sector, the difference here is that they do not completely stop their primary duty towards education and have a fully paid vacation or make more money in the guise of a continuous strike. Even in private sector employees get only 10% increment and FUTA expects public to support them to get a 20% salary increase. Nobody is restricting uni lecturers going abroad or applying for a job in the private sector for better payment. Hence if you are not satisfied with what you get please find suitable employment elsewhere because by staying in as a uni academic you are not contributing any thing to education other than having a continuous strike when the govt. has come up with a proposal for setting up a presidential commission.
L.A Perera / July 19, 2012
“”Nobody is restricting uni lecturers going abroad or applying for a job in the private sector for better payment. Hence if you are not satisfied with what you get please find suitable employment”
I think you have answered your own question,it is precisely because they
are passionate about being academics,teaching and doing research in their own country they have chosen to remain as academics,despite low salaries.If they were thinking about filling their pockets they would probably take your advise and leave.
Since you have made a comparison with the pvt sector compare the present pay of a pvt sect employee with an equally qualified university
‘Fully paid vacation’-Please read the newspapers and check up on what the academics are up to right now.You have suggested that they make money through the strike,when theres every possibility that they will have do go without pay.
As for having faith in presidential commissions, we all know how efficient and reliable they are.Its nice to be optimistic!
Mohan Samarasekera / July 19, 2012
President of FUTA and majority of the Executive Committee members are Arts(History) graduates hence they cannot find suitable employment abroad. After all other countries won’t be interestd in pursuing Sri Lanka History.
Chandra Goonewardene / July 19, 2012
I say Mohan, keep your asinine comments to yourself! We should all comment FUTA for the brave job that they are doing.
Amal K / July 20, 2012
I do not agree with FUTA’s indefinite strike action. If the government’s total revenue is 14.3% of GDP you cannot expect to allocate 6% out of that to education. May be FUTA can ask for a higher allocation from total education to higher education.
Kolitha Hettiarachchi / July 20, 2012
UK is inviting exceptionally talented migrants. FUTA and the executive committee can apply because of FUTA’s continuous trade union action probationary lecturers may not be paid even their basic salary of Rs 27,000/- this month. Oh I forgot they are a disgruntled lot because they have majored in Sri Lanka History then the UK govt will not select them.
gampaha / August 19, 2012
I think this is among the so much vital information for me. And i’m happy studying your article. But wanna observation on few general issues, The site style is ideal, the articles is actually excellent : D. Just right job, cheers
Anura Basnayake / August 23, 2012
Thanks for the site administrators for publishing everybody’s view point without any bias to any party. We got a good insight into FUTA’s politically motivated continuous strike. Once again a bouquet of thanks to the administrators of Colombo Telegraph.