26 September, 2020

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Sex-Ed Meeting At Parliament: A Fine Farce

By Vishane Herath and Chamindra Weerawardhana 

The recent meeting of the Parliamentary Sectoral Oversight Committee on Education and Human Resources Development and the Sectoral Oversight Committee on Women and Gender [hereinafter referred to as PSC meeting], focused on the sex ed book ‘Haté apé potha’ [HAP] was highly demonstrative of social, political and cultural misconceptions in Sri Lankan society. Three cis male Buddhist monks were given front-row seats to flaunt their positions on the topic of….sex education!

If it were a PSC hearing on the provision of sex ed, it should have been a platform that discussed how best to provide the best and most comprehensive sex ed to the children and youth of Sri Lanka. Instead, in this particular PSC hearing the entire conversation revolves around how best to ‘limit’ the provision of sex ed in Sri Lanka.

About the book

To recap briefly, this book is perhaps one of the most laudable developments that have taken place in the recent past in the sphere of education in Sri Lanka. The systems in place are doing great injustice to the children and youth of the country by not providing them with comprehensive sex ed. This dearth is also one of the key reasons of [if not the foremost reason of] the high rates of sexual abuse and violence in the country. The lack of comprehensive sex ed is also closely interlinked to the proliferation of STDs and mental health issues. 

It is in this broad context that this book, produced by a group of specialists, and coordinated by the Ministries of Health and Education, is a highly commendable development. The book discusses issues of bodily autonomy, consent, and sexual health. Although there certainly is plenty of space for development and further innovation, there is no doubt that this book is a very important first step in the right direction, in moving towards comprehensive and inclusive sex ed in Sri Lankan schools. In a country where many schools continue the archaic, unadvisable and outdated practice of gender segregation in primary and secondary education, it is not easy to develop a comprehensive dialogue on issues such as consent, bodily autonomy, and sexualities. It is in this broad context that HAP gains vital importance as a tremendous contribution. The medical professionals and education sector specialists behind the production of this book deserve unreserved appreciation.

The PSC Meeting  

First and foremost, a key point we wish to highlight is the absolute futility of granting pride of place to Buddhist monks in this dialogue. Frankly, this platform is not one for Buddhist monks, or for that matter, to ministers of religion of any faith practised in Sri Lanka. To add hay to the fire, it is also appalling to note that it is only cisgender male [and technically celibate] monks who are given pride of place. If they were included, why not the Bhikkunis? Do they not have a say in this dialogue? 

The behaviour of the monks throughout the meeting is particularly appalling. One of them, whose name has been most widely heard when it comes to his vocal opposition to this very important book, behaves in the most despicable mannerism. He clearly has no notion whatsoever of best behaviour and compliance to best practice in a formal setting of this nature. It is our take that the MPs  should have taken action to exclude this monk on the basis of his antisocial behaviour, instead of seeking to cajole him and trying to do their best to avoid ‘ruffling’ him. 

The most insightful comments came from specialist doctors who were present at the meeting. It is also important to note that the female medical and education sector experts present at the meeting provided the most informative and thought-provoking input, in the face of what can only be described as an absolutely pathetic level of ignorance [of the saffron-clad]. 

Against healthy sexualities: monks on masturbation? 

One observation is worth reiteration. The detail that the monks were most affected by seems to be the fact that HAP includes two sentences about masturbation. They seem to have their mind-set fixated on their beliefs (which stands no ground other than it being a personal opinion) that masturbation is in fact sinful and that HAP is promoting and ‘guiding’ children towards masturbation, disregarding all the information and scientific facts presented at the meeting by Medical and Mental health professionals . One of the saffron-clad even stresses on his belief that comprehensive sex ed should not lead children to believe that sex is about pleasure. It is hard to understand whether he is implying that parents – if not people – all around the world only engage in sexual acts for the sole purpose of reproduction(or that sexual activity other than penile-vaginal penetrative sex  does not exist/are unnatural). The monks also seem to be particularly affected by the fact that the book explicitly mentions that girls also masturbate. In our take, the book is somewhat inadequate on this matter, when it comes to the use of words and syntax. If you read that section carefully, you will notice that the prime emphasis is on masturbation by boys [if not children assigned male at birth]. Masturbation by girls [if not children assigned female at birth] is included as somewhat of an addendum. This, we believe is something that requires genuine fixing. 

As human rights activists, we would also highlight that the book requires an age-appropriate section on gender identity/expression, providing children who are non-cisnormative or non-conforming to obtain some form of useful insight. 

The path forward? 

In conclusion, it is absolutely crucial to highlight that Buddhist monks or ministers of religion of any other faith should have no say at all in determining how our children and youth are taught sex education. Distributing this book to all children in the grade 7 age group is an absolute must. Moreover, we have to strive to develop better and more informative sex education, which imperatively includes elements such as informed and enthusiastic consent, the use of protection [not only the condom(including, obviously, female condoms) but also dental dams], STDs and preventive information, and healthy sexual practices. It goes without saying that it is absolutely essential to make sex ed LGB-inclusive, as well as transgender and intersex-inclusive. This is the only way in which we can challenge sexual violence, gender-based violence, and move towards a society in which consent, respect and healthy lives thrive.


*Vishane Herath is a human rights and gender justice activist. He is a student at the University of Victoria, British Columbia. 

*Chamindra Weerawardhana is a human rights and gender justice activist, author and political analyst. She is currently a Visiting Fellow at the University of Victoria, British Columbia. 

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Latest comments

  • 21
    3

    Quote
    First and foremost, a key point we wish to highlight is the absolute futility of granting pride of place to Buddhist monks in this dialogue
    Unquote

    PLEASE QUESTION YOURSELF – time is flying,but nothing seem to be moving for the improvement of anything- we the fools dominated srilanka are walking on a circle

    I dont think a parent with some sanity would let their own children to be taught by a notorious tutioon master right ? so as people with some knowledge about what there are doing would not allow be led by criminals right ?

    If ones with sanity would take a cancer patient to a cancer specialist (oncologist) for therapy and instructions,
    if a maths teacher is the one to help students with their maths problems,
    if a plumber should be the one to contact in the blockages in pipe systems in a house hold environment
    if a sports teacher should be the one to do the sports lession
    if a political analyst should be the one to analyse the politics in a country
    if a physicotherapist shold be the one to help with your muscle pains or the like health problems in human body
    if a gardner is the one to instruct with horticultural decorations

    WHY ON EARTH SIVURU WEARING SHAVED MEN THAT ABUSE THEIR MONKHOOD BE ALLOWED TO LEAD ” sex education ” ?

    Not long ago, it became clear to local media that there are lot more buddhist monks that constantly abuse the young monks in temples across the country. It is becoming a public secret that some senior monks are on the list of HIV patients that seek the specialist for therapies while continue to be in so called monk constume – SIVURA.

    Also a fact that a monk who then had been caught by media for having molested a child became Rajaakshe propagandist in the election campaign

    • 20
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      I dont think it is right to LANKEN SHAVED THUGS wearing saffron robes to allow teaching lessions to the society. This society is misled by these fake monks. Let them be away from keeping them above the law. We need law reforms to the prevailing systems even if a monk commits a crime should be punished equally respecting the law and order in a country. if USA and GERMANY could why not us ?

      In Today s Srilanka, we should see that monks that are in spot light do really well

      So called Prof. Maedagoda someone is though wrapped around like a monk, but is alled to run super market complexes by his own. .. that means these men with fake academic titles make every effort to support the vicious politicians and mislead the masses.

      Actualyl they eart free, enjoy sex free, enjoy smart phones free, but sowing lies to the very same punnaku eating masses. They behave almost the same like the lay people … instead of taking the society to proper tracks, thehse men in red costumes are abusing their power… which LB never preached in his true buddhism.

      Monks that beahve FAKE are the majority in their community today. I will film them in the near future and get back to you with facts next days.

      • 2
        1

        Shocking that you did not know the Saga of the Sacred monks. The whole world knows about their misdeeds and some may be even wanted by the Interpol for their behavior in the sex industry . Were you in some other planet totally ignorant of their activities. Wake up buddy and look around to see how worse things are happening under your nose.

        • 2
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          Ramo,
          what an argument ?
          Just because those sacared monks do it, you should stay further shup up no thaving exposed the ir abusive nature ?
          In srilankens context, nowadays, even Grandpas rape their own grand children. Sisters are raped by brothers, just listen to that Kandula program, held by one Brother Charles and several other human videos prodcued by experts in SL, about the current absymal levels of sex crimes in the country.
          You guys, instead of making every effort to protect the children, but push them on to the criminals why Rama, are you a rape victim ?

          Just becasue all others continue crimes, you would get caught by crimes ? what an idiot you should be … open your eyes, dont let your mother, sisters, children be caught by Rajakshe rasclas. just because you cant see it beyond. They protect, SHAVED [edited out], that allow them volumes of votes for their political surivvial.

        • 3
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          Rama the used condom@

          Rajakashe political masturbation would not leave the kind of good discussion be part of the society. That is the reason thhose shaved [edited out] to make every effort to block that hathe ape potha (HAP). You guys though would eat their excreta in volumes on one go, we would not. At least 60 lacks of voters would stand against Rajaakshe terror in this country.

    • 15
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      Buddhist monks are the sexperts on sex education!

      There are 135 Buddhist monks with HIV infection.

    • 12
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      Please listen to what these two skin head men have to say about SEX education

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zp6TEPuQ7vw

      Gone were the days we respect lanken buddhist monks, but them to fallo that deep today make us feel vomitting. These monk just because they possess academic titles, that were awarded to them by srilanken UNis, feel that they should interfere in every areas even if they are not the experts.
      They should better focus on their areas. I think almost everything is mixed up in this country

      Ragaya, Rathiya and Kama Shasthraya etc are being taught by this monk ? My foot.
      These men are the pain of this nation.

    • 10
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      This country people are not yet ready for any kind of open discussion – was made clear by Dr Dewasiri – a year ago. According to him, the general public of this country would need lot more time to even see it right.

      He is 100% right. That is why they the dons are away from public forums today.-

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u0e45VG80L4

    • 10
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      I dont know about you – but I am very ashamed of my nation today

      1) We are compelled to call a man who was then been alleged to have committed high crimes breaking all the known men – the incumbent president

      we are not yet sure, the man has renounced his AMERICAN citizenship, but what we know is his brother former Gadafi Style leader made his brother possible be the presidential canddiate nominee and let him get elected as the prez.

      I wonder why then any convicted high criminals cant have the same CHANCEs on this srilanken soil?

      2) We then call a premier whose previous rule was repeatedly compared with that of Zimbabwian Mugabe or Libia s Gadafi.
      By 2015, almost every state onthis globe except for SWAZILAND and BELARUS, stood against Rajapakhse as leaders.
      This country was cornered in the world – CW repeated us to be even worst than barbarians

      But today reluctanly we call him OUR current premier… ha ha…

      3) And with records beocming breaking – SAFFRAN clad monks and their abusive cultures coming up – nevertheless we hold htem above altar why ? And they are made to believe, the should interfere in any unknown issues, be it sex education or politics… Athana Methana Natana Rathana thero made Dr Safi a man to have suppressed over hundreds of patients# falopian tubes in order make them infertile… BMJ would say, thi sshould be a WORLD record ha haha ? THE KIND of balige putha monks knows nothing bu ttheir FROG INA WELL theories in misleading masses in this country, Rathana should be hung by his balls for all the high crimes to have committed sofar… but we are not sure of him owning a penis…

      • 0
        1

        You have given too many facts. Watch out Gotta’s intelligence service Pusweeracommandos ( Hitlers seceret service known as Sondocomondo) will bundle you and shove into a watery grave. YOU ARE BEING MONITORED

        • 1
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          Weeraputhra, what a weera puthra, not lknowing the least about the facts.

          They are monitored by us man, WE THE experts from the west – not the other way around. [edited out] will get caught in the next, when we go to UNHRC and produce our proof materials about Gota s ill performance abusing his power.

          • 1
            1

            Sorry buddy
            I am not sure which west or east you are from but Gotta has to be given the chance to guide the country and we with our criticism make him aware wher he is and could be wrong. By the way you need to improve your written English or may be even German or French. Isch comme aus Colombo !!??

            • 0
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              Why should he be given a chance if we are sure him being a stupid person born to the same abusive family ? What grammar do u want me to teach u?

    • 7
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      Srilanka has missed their chance

      We need to put the blame on the media -which is the most abusive than anythign else inthe country today.

      They spread lies and lies about the Yahapalanaya. Today it is becoming CRYSTAL CLEAR that the bond scam under good governance is harmless when compared to the losses of bond scam to have occured under MR rule. Ajith Kabral to havehis own arguments made it very clear that he wanted the forensic reported being kept away from the parliamentarians/nation – since hew as well aware of the fact that the losses they made under BALLIGE PUTHA Rajapkshe was hundred times more than what became clear in 2015 and 2016.
      JVPrs and SIRASApainted it in favour of RAJAKSHSES even if they had no evidence to prove that UNP led govt is the only one to be blamed for that. Sirisena the most abusive man, later became lap dog of, MAHINDA … made a very big mistake, having kept that report away from the parliamentarians for such a long time. He should be hung by his balls alone for that matter.

      SIRISENA should come forward and respond to the nation as to why the bugger went on shopping leaving the countrys national security be in jeopardy ?

      To me, SIRISENA should be jailed for ever not that IGP and defence secretary

    • 3
      2

      Vishana and Chamunda,

      “First and foremost, a key point we wish to highlight is the absolute futility of granting pride of place to Buddhist monks in this dialogue. “

      Well, do the Buddhist monks believe that the Monk training they got from the senior monks, as Samaneras, child monks, is the best sex education one can get?

      To make matters worse, they are getting input from the monks, who do not marry, other than described above, and the imbeciles are pursuing these monks in the front row.

      No wonder some of the Para-imbeciles , mean IQ 79, are confused , and getting in the way of those who know.

    • 3
      1

      WHY ON EARTH SIVURU WEARING SHAVED MEN THAT ABUSE THEIR MONKHOOD BE ALLOWED TO LEAD ” sex education ” ?

      Leelagemalli,

      I am informed by a learned friend, that many of our own Sivuru clan are practical experts in Onanistic practice and coitus interruptus.

      • 1
        2

        May be they have been castrated personally by Gotta and his brother MR so they feel these idiots are safe among women and kids. This is not an assumption but what else can we say

      • 1
        1

        Aha!! you hit the nail on the head. I remember when one of these sex starved fellows gave me a lecture on 69 straight from the Kamasutra and he was in another planet. I was dumbfounded watching his actions and movements

      • 2
        1

        Spring,
        .#
        in the days ahead of us they would practise in being in KELANIYA bomaluwa for sure. That [edited out] Prof. Pundit monk, who misled the nation, by his myth about relics to have been brought by a reptile saga – reemmber ? what made the people this much of blind Mr ? I have not lived in the country for ages, but I wonder why they get easily misled by easy tricks being played by SIVURU wearing wankers. I respect good buddhist monks, but I would never kneel down before them today knowing that many of them are just mudalalies.

  • 10
    3

    Please CT publish this, even if that is too long

    Also a fact and a public secret – DRUG TRAFFICKERS such as NIMAL LANZA be given IMPUNITY in lanken legal system, curse to Mahinda Rajaakshe the former abusive ruler – incumbent Premier thanks to his brother.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xuggVAsudJ4

    My question to you – READERs: if everything is set as nothing could work for the solving the problems, why people in thi scountry are made permament fools to adulate Rajakashes ?

    Secondly, why on earth, if over 60% more temple buddhist monks molest their child monks, neverthless are kept above in the society. Is it not like high criminals allow to lead a society in terms of crime control ?

    I am not living in SRILANKA, but I am very much concerned about the future of our youth in my motherland, so, when you guys start doing a single thing being wholehearted for the benefit of the masses of this long time war torn country?

    Name of the god, plesae take these monks away from the discussion being held on “hathe ape potha”. Monks community should be part of lanken public discussions but they should not be the ones to lead it, let the experts in the areas to guide the nation incl. monks. Monks may be the experts in teachings in buddhism, but going by today’s context in this country, monks have become permament laughing stock to the nation and the world as of now.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0siEVucKCU

  • 6
    5

    ever since the parliament in the shittiest sorriest state on the planet has been the joke of the century. the British comedy series yes prime minister and the one before that yes minister if produced in my motherland will still be in production.
    =======
    this parliament is the best for the innocents to know and become scholars in the dynamic sordid world of vice, where the students will become well versed in the antics of the kama sutra and with the active valuable guidance assistance of the wal pothai gurus the students all of them will become maestros of the fine art of sexology and when they happily go back to their own homes, their grandparents and their neighbors they the new sexology Ph.D. holders holding a Dr before their names will be able to teach all the elders they associate with many a trick.
    =======
    I now regret after browsing through this article diligently and fervently word by word and letter by letter that I was the planets biggest gombass of an idiotic clown to have done a runner from the best taste of paradise.
    ======
    after a lapse of 33 years, I am intending to take the next available fishing boat back to the tastiest paradise on the good old earth known to one and all as the- Sri Lanka the tastiest place to be where you can all the finer points of the sexual methods within even less than a day.
    the buddha’s always randy hard-up Buddhist monks/nuns and along with their best mates the MP’s their parliamentary staff will forget about how to make hora Salli, paga ganna habits and will relish in the fine art of sexsersing robbing the female students of their precious only one available plum cherry pudding and for the males, they will teach them to become the world’s best bottom’s and top’s.

    • 1
      0

      Johnpillai, some Tamils are disgusting and uneducated, they have no manners and have total disregard for decency and politeness. But most Tamils aren’t like that. Most are just normal folk living a normal life. If the moderators cannot do their job properly, we can only reply in a similar vein.

  • 5
    8

    “The systems in place are doing great injustice to the children and youth of the country by not providing them with comprehensive sex ed. “

    Comprehensive sex ed is a waste of time. Children should go to school to develop their analytical and logical skills. The real problem with school is the number of hours children spend there. Many leave at 5:30 in the morning and arrive home at 3 PM. This does not include time spent on tuition classes. At home, they will then spend several hours doing homework. The point is, if children spend more time at home and less time at school, they will have a better personal development.

  • 6
    2

    If you need to know the “Lessons” on sex education, listen to the speech made by the “Legislator” and the “Peoples’ Representative Hirunika Premachandra, participating in the debate over “Ranjan Tapes”. She said, towards the end of the speech: ” I will give my front and back only to my husband”. That statement contains and needs quite a lot of in-depth analysis and study, so that not only the school children but the elders too can gain much “Know-Hows” on sex. Any “Institution” to grant her a “PHD”? A must, I believe.

    • 0
      0

      Giving front and the back is rather astonishing. I am not trying to analyse this but the verbal barrage damages the sanctity of women. Newton’s sixth law of motion promulgated by me states “WHEN A POLE PASSES THROUGH A HOLE THE RESULTING SOUL IS A POLE OR A HOLE” So whether it is the front or the back the end result is the same. May Hirunika have a good nights sleep

  • 1
    1

    Young children means they like to experiment, When the age comes they may teach what sex is. So, teach them and fix condoms machines in the Latrine, make sure you ask them to have frequent medical check ups, Nurse has to visit the school often, not only to check teeth and vaccination schedules but also their genital areas. lot of jobs there and also some business will earn good money.

    • 1
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      Brilliant idea, while in the process of the nurses visiting schools she could also get screwed by the young boys.These would be “practicals ” part of the curriculum. What a great idea,you should be shot with your own shit loaded into a AK47

  • 4
    1

    Sex education for Sri Lankan’s… ha ha ha. First teach them common sense…. even their Ex. Executive President was lacking common sense… Ha ha

  • 2
    0

    In my time, there was no computers to watch porno, no face books, whatap, you tube and many other social media outlets to watch porno. Yet we read books passed under the table. What do you want to teach them, Is it safe sex.
    Besides, Buddhists can not have their culture and it has to be west dominated christian culture, because they think they are superior in every way.

  • 0
    1

    Our Sri Lankan student population has no need these days for any school text book to give them sex education; they get it from the internet. Only the other day I was on the Kochchikade bus and saw two eager school boys in uniform watching a bit of ‘up and under’ on their phones. Older people will remember their days in school when it was common to find a boy indulging in a bit of ‘athagahanawa’ in the toilets. One thing is for sure: priests of any persuasion should not be allowed to have part to play in advising our children on this delicate subject. Also, be careful of tuition masters. One girl in Negombo found out from her maths tuition master the one plus one equals three – in the end she had to give the baby to the nuns at Nayakakande for adoption.

    • 0
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      Spring@

      if the topic would have been open to the nation, things would not have gone that wrong in the society.
      They the lankens yet today make it a big issue when a girl starts her with her mensuration circle – that has become their so call some incoming earning issues in rural corners of the country yet today.

      But in the same time, young boys becoming ripe is being totally ignored why ? Why is that the education is not improved towards the male purberty ?

      We perfectly know that sivuru wearing shaved men molest their child monks in their temples almsot across the country. Seeyas rape their own grand children. That KANDULA program of Brother charles made it clear there should ba home for the children in Embilipitiya where you find the kids born to their own daughters. Many of these families have no mothers to take care of their daughters in their puberty. So, fathers rape their own girl children. How come they still callingn themselves SINHALA buddhists to rape their own children this way.

      Almost over 60% across the country, temeple monks have raped their child monks.

      And some of the senior monks have infected HIV into CHILD monks – is a lknnown fact that came to light in recent times.

      Rajakshe never allowed these abusive acts being exposed since he focused only votes of the people and monks. Not long ago, that man from AKMEEMANA – Galle – PS memeber in Rajaakshe clan, had raped a 16 year old giirl child 6 or 9 times with the approval of the parents. That had happened by misleading the parents – telling them that the child is being kept for a therapy in a dark room. The case was buried under the carpet, by Rajakshe henchmen, since if that came up, they would not get any votes from the area.

  • 1
    1

    It’s a topic which is destroying and destroyed many nations.
    ..
    Firstly, we need to understand all religions are against sexual pleasures outside marriage.
    ..
    Except for a few gene copy errors, a normal human has 3 stages in their sexual maturity.
    ..
    If not for social pressure for them to reach full maturity, lot of children will not reach maturity.
    ..
    Hence, science have confirmed the religious views.
    ..
    The issue is with the scientists and not the science.
    ..
    If you look at places like Scandinavia, you will find the suicide rate has gone up due to untimely sexual pleasures.
    ..
    All the monks were trying to do is to support, our future generations wellbeing. They can see the poison coming with it by looking at the world today.
    ..
    Yes we need to be kind to each other but should not promote failure.
    ..
    I’m sure teaching the children about social behavior, how predators approach and with good security measures will keep away the few bad apples.
    ..
    Definitely sexual education is required but without promoting sexual pleasures.

  • 0
    1

    tt is incorrect to say that all three monks are opposed to the teaching of sex -education to students. One of the monks, the Chief Sanganayake of the Western Province and Chancellor of the Ruhuna University, Ven. Dr. Akuretiye Nanda Thero, has endorsed the book. The sectoral committee called the meetings, ( there were 2), after Ven. Prof. Medagoda Abaytissa Thero, held a press conference to condemn the book. He did not attend the first meeting. Only the Chief Sanganayake did, and he was supportive. He also argued in support of the book at the second meeting which was attended by Medogada Abayatissa Thero and Ven. Indurugare Dhammaratne Thero. It was these two, and a couple of other males who came with Medagoda Abaytissa who are vehemently opposed to t sex education. at school.

    Information on both those meetings can be seen here. http://counterpoint.lk/will-we-throw-the-baby-out-with-the-bathwater/

    http://counterpoint.lk/whos-afraid-of-sex-education/

  • 0
    1

    Sorry buddy
    I am not sure which west or east you are from but Gotta has to be given the chance to guide the country and we with our criticism make him aware wher he is and could be wrong. By the way you need to improve your written English or may be even German or French. Isch comme aus Colombo !!??

  • 1
    0

    Everyone should appreciate the very high standard of debate that took place at the sectoral oversight meeting. The priests are and have been a very important influential part of Sri Lankan society. They cannot be kept out of important issues such as this. They did raise a valid point. Which is the appropriate age at which such education is appropriate. The important fact is that as a democracy this is the type of debate we need in the country to arrive at consensus. The decision makers at the Ministry of education should listen to all views. But at the end of the day it is their decision as to what should be taught in schools. They are the experts who have been appointed. We should give them the space to do their job.

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