Silent Heroes in Education.

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My country, Sri Lanka, is a small, beautiful island, that has an exciting, vibrant, diverse culture with a population of 20 million, 2.2 of which live in the capital Colombo. Our official languages are both: Sinhala and Tamil. There are idyllic beaches with spectacular coral reefs, and world-class surfing. The country’s impressive array of castles, temples, and ruined ancient cities that date back to 500BC, provides endless exploration for culture enthusiasts. In the midst of all of this, we a highly evolved school system that is divided into five parts: primary, junior secondary, senior secondary, collegiate and tertiary. Primary education lasts five to six years (Grades 1-5) and at the end of this period, the students may elect to write a national exam called the Scholarship exam. After primary education, the junior secondary level (referred to as middle school in some schools) lasts for 4 years (Grades 6-9) followed by 2 years (Grades 10-11) of the senior secondary level which is the preparation for the General Certificate of Education (G.C.E) Ordinary Level (O/Ls). According to the Sri Lankan law, it is compulsory that all children go to school till grade 9 (age 14) at which point they can choose to continue their education or drop out and engage in apprenticeship for a job or farming. However, the Ministry of Education strongly advises all students to continue with their studies at least till the G.C.E Ordinary Level.

There are government schools ,Non-government schools and International schools in Sri Lanka which provide school education.But in government school education is provided freely from kindergarten to the university. Kandy Model School is a government school administered under the central provincial council.

Kandy Model School is one of the best Model Schools in the Central province ,Sri Lanka ,which provides primary and secondary education. Being a mixed school with nearly 1400 student population ,the school is located in two different places under the same administration. The secondary section is situated in a greener environment. Kandy Model School has an enviable reputation in academic excellence, sports, IT and extra-curricular activities.

Teachers have been used to work harder from the starting period of the school because they had the intention to lead it to the top level.The first principal had given a strong leadership for the teachers.The main aims of starting the Kandy Model School were to develop a school in a village area and facilitate the children with better learning environment ,to strengthen the system with new changes and to fulfill the parents' needs.At the initial stage primary section was started with grade one and two with 171 students. More talented teachers are always engage in various type of teaching –learning activities.

My colleague Mr.Pushpakumara is a teacher of Sinhala Language by his teaching appointment. But he is the in- charge of various sports activities like football and athletics while getting students involve in aesthetics activities like drama and arts. Its interesting to see his Sinhala language lessons with songs Although he is not competent in using ICT for teaching ,he seek assistance of the IT teacher and students wherever ICT is essential for his lessons.

The sports and physical education teacher Mrs.Shanti does an amazing role as a netball coach. The school did not have a netball team until she came to the school. Her dedication to practice girls in the teams was wonderful.I saw how the girls practiced shooting,defending,intercepting,dodging,positioning in the court and more. Harder work of the teachers, with their inner urge to get their students to top level is remarkable. During the after school hours the strength, dedication, enthusiasm and love for the profession is seen .Those teachers do not leave the school even if the school hours are over. Their own leadership lead the way to success of the students.

The experience I had at the Microsoft in Education Global Forum in Spain, enlightened me about the role of the real educator or the teacher. I teach ICT as a subject.And when the results of the G.C.E (O/L) were out ,I found that all of my students who did ICT for the examination are passed with excellent (A) ,very good(B) and credit passes(C).(No any ordinary pass!) I was delighted. In front of my name and subject there is 100%. I have new targets. I want to show that every student CAN DO,CAN BE SUCCESSFUL with the real help of teachers. I am in a mission of guiding so called weaker students to be successful in ICT .At the same time I want to get more girls involved in ICT related learning.(Where girls tend to give up ICT after grade 9).So ,my PBL work will be continued with some tactful approach. And many colleagues will be joined with me in relation with ICT integrated teaching -learning process.

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