SCHOOL PRIN­CI­PALS RE­LUC­TANT TO ACT DUE TO HU­MAN RIGHTS CON­CERNS

Vi­o­lence in schools

Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - NEWS - BY LAHIRU POTHMULLA

School Prin­ci­pals of sev­eral lead­ing Colombo schools, sev­eral of whom were forced to dis­ci­pline stu­dents who were found to have been part of two clashes that oc­curred on Wed­nes­day (15), said that they had been put in an awk­ward po­si­tion by the gov­ern­ment as a re­sult of stric­tures im­posed on them by

Cir­cu­lar no: 2016/12 in­cludes mea­sures to be fol­lowed when safe­guard­ing dis­ci­pline in schools

in­sti­tu­tions such as the Hu­man Rights Com­mis­sion (HRC) with re­gard to stu­dent dis­ci­pline.

Th­ese prin­ci­pals had con­veyed this to Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter Ak­ila Vi­raj Kariyawasam dur­ing an ur­gent meet­ing held at the Min­istry to dis­cuss the clashes that broke out be­tween two groups of stu­dents of Ananda and Na­landa and an in­ter­nal clash that broke out at D. S. Se­nanayake Col­lege and also to dis­cuss fu­ture se­cu­rity mea­sures to be taken dur­ing the big match sea­son to pre­vent such clashes from tak­ing place.

Min­is­ter Kariyawasam in­quired from the prin­ci­pals as to what ac­tion they had taken with re­gard to the re­cent clashes.he pointed out that Cir­cu­lar no: 2016/12 in­cludes mea­sures to be fol­lowed when safe­guard­ing dis­ci­pline in schools and it had em­pow­ered School Dis­ci­plinary Boards to take ac­tion against stu­dents who breach dis­ci­pline.

How­ever, prin­ci­pals were of the opin­ion that it was ex­tremely dif­fi­cult for them to ad­here to this cir­cu­lar due to rec­om­men­da­tions of the HRC and other in­sti­tu­tions who had put for­ward pro­ce­dures to be fol­lowed when dis­ci­plin­ing stu­dents.

The min­is­ter in­structed rel­e­vant au­thor­i­ties and of­fi­cials to cre­ate a strong mech­a­nism to up­hold dis­ci­pline among stu­dents. He in­structed of­fi­cials to im­me­di­ately re­cruit teach­ers who are coun­sel­lors and high­lighted the im­por­tance of up­hold­ing dis­ci­pline in schools. “Prin­ci­pals and teach­ers are di­rectly re­spon­si­ble for dis­ci­pline among stu­dents. Par­ents too should share the re­spon­si­bil­ity of dis­ci­plin­ing their chil­dren,” the min­is­ter said.

Prin­ci­pals and vice prin­ci­pals of Ananda, Na­landa, D. S. Se­nanayake, Royal, Thurstan, Isi­pathana and Ma­hanama Colleges in Colombo, Prince of Wales Col­lege and St. Se­bas­tian’s Col­lege in Mo­ratuwa, S. Thomas’ Col­lege-mt. Lavinia and Sri Dhar­maloka Vidyalaya - Ke­laniya at­tended the meet­ing.

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