Private universities - Dons to strike on Tuesday

12 January 2012 04:16 pm - 33     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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While students of several universities were continuing protest campaigns, university teachers said today they would launch a countrywide strike next Tuesday in protest over the Private University Bill which they said should only be brought to Parliament after the government discussed the matter fully with university teachers and other stakeholders.

The Federation of University Teachers Associations (FUTA) said the government should not introduce the proposed Quality Assurance Accreditation and Qualification Frame Bill without the approval of all stakeholders in the higher education sector.

Meanwhile the government said it had no intention of introducing the Private University Bill at least in the foreseeable future.

FUTA, which comprises university lecturers in Sri Lanka said now that the bill has been postponed, the provisions of the bill should be discussed with all stakeholders and obtain their consent before the Bill was brought to Parliament. FUTA President Nirmal Dewasiri said provisions in the bill related to university autonomy, proposals to create a council to regulate non-state universities and other conditions which were not suitable for the educational structure in the country.

He said the employability of graduates; quality of higher education and the involvement of private capital were issues that needed to be given priority.

“There should be dialogue among the stakeholders first and then the policies should be introduced based on the dialogue. The authorities think they can make decisions on behalf of the education sector but it doesn’t work that way. It is the wrong attitude and the wrong decisions made which can be detrimental to the education system in the country,” Dr. Dewasiri said.

University teachers will also demand the salary increments and benefits which were proposed and approved by the Treasury Secretary last year but were still not given. They are also demanding that funds allocated to the education sector be increased to six per cent of the GDP.“Some of the many burning issues we are facing today in universities is because of low investments in the education sector, which has an allocation of some two per cent of the GDP, and this is much lower than Ethiopia which has an allocation of four per cent of the GDP,” Dr. Dewasiri said. (Olindhi Jayasundere)

  Comments - 33

  • Ranjitdea Friday, 13 January 2012 03:37 AM

    Government is right, if there is going to be private universities there should be quality assurance. So why do Dons want to protest. Dons should improve the quality of State Universities. What research have they done and published. What international university rankings do State Universities have with all the facilities they have.

    Jay Friday, 13 January 2012 03:42 AM

    Sri Lanka spends the least percentage of the GDP for education in South Asia, even less than Nepal and Bangladesh. Spend much more for education and make State universities centres of excellence. Make more places available in State universities. Then there will be no opposition to private universities. Also ensure that only quality universities are set up.

    SF Friday, 13 January 2012 03:48 AM

    Students and their parents have the right whether they studying in state university or private university or go abroad for higher studies. Government's duty is enhance the higher education oppertunities in Sri Lanka. Government has not enough money for invest on higher education and give chance for every students who have qualified for state university. Thefore, private sector investment needs for enhance university education in Sri Lanka. Government has a responsibility to monitor quality of degree and maintain standard for qualifications of student enrolled and lecturers qualification for private universities. Therefore, this act is helpful for students and parent wish to send student into private universities. At present, there are private insitutions offer degrees and no laws to monitor the quality of education. The Federation of University Teachers Associations (FUTA) and JVP or state university students do not have right protest on this.

    Jayantha Weera Friday, 13 January 2012 03:44 AM

    Gentlemen
    Respect your PHD's earned in foreign universities. You have seen how those universities support students in the curriculum, tutorials and at individual meetings. You people are promoting strikes after coming to Sri Lanka on pay rises. The innocent victims are children who are caught with politics. These are all tax payers’ money that needs to be accounted. Sri Lanka never respects such values.
    Discuss the private Universities bill positively. It is for countries interest. Private universities will help to upgrade the Universities in Sri Lanka. Only thing is there should be a methodology in considering such applications.

    ind Friday, 13 January 2012 03:54 AM

    Good. Also long as no students in Universities. Dons are on strike virtually !! So effect whether they strike or not.

    Tharuka Friday, 13 January 2012 03:55 AM

    University Lecturers are responsible for their own down-fall, they have not done anything to improve the education. They do not have research publications in reputed journals such as SCI or SSCI indexes. Therefore, day by day all state university rank goes down. There is no Sri lankan university ranked below 250 asian ranked. The Federation of University Teachers Associations (FUTA) speak for their benefits and political agenda.

    ind Friday, 13 January 2012 03:56 AM

    Private or government, those who get qualified will get jobs. JVP won't be able to get into private universities into troubles. That's the thing they are worried about.

    liyanage Friday, 13 January 2012 04:36 AM

    it is not the problem with the private universities but the way government is going to start. before passing a bill, it must have a good conversation among educated people ( Not with politician like JVP).we need private universities but with proper quality/standared to suit international condition.

    Daya Friday, 13 January 2012 04:53 AM

    Private universities co exist with Nation universities are not at all problem. What they fail to understand was what is the skill shortage of the country. They need to invest and those courses such as technical courses and research courses such as on IT, etc. If they indeed intrested on Universities with Medical faculties then they can open that for foreign students only to attract foreign money inflow to the country while restrict them to practise on this country.

    Ajith Nissanka Friday, 13 January 2012 05:05 AM

    The main problem with private universities is that it is not providing equal opportunities. How many kids could afford to go to these schools paying 30-40laks? Everybody should have equal opportunities when you come to education. You are talking about private universities in Europe and USA without knowing the facts. When you get qualification (it is not money at all) to enter the university there then you get a financial aid package to determine how much grants (free money) you may get and how much student loans (with very low interest) you may get. It is totally based on your or your parents income. It is totally fare to have private universities with that type of body to assist students financially.

    Imran Hussein Friday, 13 January 2012 05:42 AM

    Pvt Unis a must. Govt should go ahead with this but with proper planning of course.

    das Friday, 13 January 2012 06:09 AM

    Have you forgotten that entry to state universities is not fair either. Because of the district quota system many talented students do not get a chance while village idiots with low marks get in. Private unis will reduce this issue to some level.

    JVPBanda Friday, 13 January 2012 06:09 AM

    Oh my god! How can we do politic in private universities. S.B. asked 25% of total intake as scholarships for Sri Lankan students. If private universities do better than government universities, only few student will entered to government universities. How we can take students to the roads? We will politically die. Brother "Wilmal" you can mislead president. Sometime, you have to join with us in the future. Please oppose to this bill. UNP does not speak against this bill.

    ABC Friday, 13 January 2012 06:18 AM

    Rajapakse Uncle! Please invite some Chinese university such as Beijing, Shanghai, Fudan, Peking and Tinhua universities to setup campuses in Sri Lanka, including Hambanthota. You can give tax free.

    pasha Friday, 13 January 2012 06:34 AM

    Private universities are opposed because people like u with O/L can get a degree in 1 year time

    Medalankara de Chopp Friday, 13 January 2012 06:35 AM

    Pvt Universities - what madness. There is one place that promises a degree provided you pay the money and come a minimum number of days. Their days are numbered.

    nikita Friday, 13 January 2012 06:38 AM

    so whats the problem. U dont have any problem O/L student going abroad and coming back as doctors with out any studies. There were so call students went to russia and spend years loafing around , keep chaning the university at the year ends, because they cannot pass the exam and finaly they purchase the degree and comming back. why cant we train our student to a quality standard we give, if they can pass let it be a O/L guy

    Citizen perera Friday, 13 January 2012 06:53 AM

    Private universities are to make money..it is a business...in short certificates are issued for( a fee) money.

    Chandima Friday, 13 January 2012 08:45 AM

    The same can do in foreign countries if you have money. So you are against offering it in Sri Lanka and welcoming who gratuted in foreign countires andpaid by using the Sri Lanka's money....

    Isnt it silly..??

    Sri Lankan Student Friday, 13 January 2012 08:56 AM

    Well said. I fully agree with you. I was not born to a privileged, wealthy family and fell short of marks to enter a national university. But I was good in my studies and also wanted to study further. My parents couldn't afford an overseas education, so I did professional qualifications here in SL (paid by my own earnings). If I had the education offered by a private university I too could have done a BA and Masters, instead of doing diplomas.

    abdhallah Friday, 13 January 2012 04:05 PM

    The govt.should not postponed this worthy cause. This is a timely requiremnt to address the needs of the citizen of Sri Lanka. If there is a problem with the quality of education in private universitiis it needs to be corrected and not stopped. When our students with O.Level or A. Level studied in forigne universities theire qualifications acccepted globally. Did any of our university students or JVP oppose those degrees? No they didn't. This is absolute jelousy and nothingelse. Why our MBBS doctors go to forign medical colleges for higher qualifications if the quality of those universities not accepted. This is an urgent need of the hour and we hope His excellancy Hon. President will correct the situation.

    Shivanka David Thursday, 12 January 2012 07:25 PM

    These fellows don't study instead they go protesting where on earth in other countries do you find this? all due to dirty politics involved in each & everything it's like a cancer.

    rd Thursday, 12 January 2012 08:06 PM

    JVP is a curse for the country

    Pancha Thursday, 12 January 2012 08:11 PM

    Sri Lankas education will be plagued till dooms day, This is not a wish but giving voicing to the inevitable. The corrosion must be removed for anything to happen, 40 years of corrosion is quite a challenge.

    hul Thursday, 12 January 2012 09:26 PM

    we are with you.

    Student Thursday, 12 January 2012 10:09 PM

    Please allow the passing of this bill if not there will be only a select few in SL who can pursue university studies.....since everyone is not fortunate enough to pay thumping fees to go abroad and study and there are only a few who get into SL unis.....so we need unis of this nature so that there will be more who can pursue uni education in SL......please think of everybody not your self interests....if u cant allow private unis then increase the intake of students in SL unis and allow students who do London AL and so on also to join....atleast SL students....

    Nodrog Friday, 13 January 2012 12:55 AM

    why oppose private unis? If students want to pay and get a better and uninterrupted education....then why not? See the mess the free unis are in, the troubles and violence the students have to put up with. So its no wonder students will prefer private unis which will not tolerate this nonsense,

    Dil Friday, 13 January 2012 01:31 AM

    what is really wrong with Sri Lanka. There is nothing wrong in opening up private universities which we should have done years ago and given the opportunity to all the Sri Lankans to hold a university degree. Take other countries for example. Everyone has the right to get educated. It is not a matter of who get higher scores and who doesn't. This is the reason why many Sri Lankans go to other countries to get qualified and they never come back and their wealth and knowledge is used elsewhere. Get over the attitude people and think with a open mind and read and find out about the education systems in Australia,Uk,USA or India. Over 14 million students get enrolled to Indian Universities each year.

    Manjula Friday, 13 January 2012 02:06 AM

    There are gov. uni's with gov. funded schols for deserving students, just like how it is now. Private uni's for people who can pay. Both will give degrees to students who SHOW up, not to ones holding posters. Employers will hire who are qualified, not the one working on a revolution. With time, trouble makers will be weeded out. Work hard, get good grades go to gov uni or if you can to a private one. Appreciate your education, live a decent life.

    Ranjith Gurugamage Friday, 13 January 2012 02:34 AM

    University Lecturers are responsible for their own down-fall, they have not done anything to improve the education of the students, only to get their Car Permits and promotions.I have seen the number of hours they work.Very rarely you get a don who is working towards a higher standards and quality education.Aargee

    kkk Friday, 13 January 2012 03:01 AM

    well, they got a point, the government should at least discuss the Bill in public before its brought to the parliament! I support Private Universities but the public needs to know the governments intentions and how this is going to work out!


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