A new lab with 50 Intel classmate PCs for the Mahinda Rajapaksa Vidyalaya in Homagama was declared open by the Minister of Education Bandula Gunewardena recently. The lab was facilitated by Intel Sri Lanka, via its World Ahead programme, under the Ministry of Education’s IT literacy campaign targeting 1,000 local secondary schools around the island.
Intel EM Ltd - Sri Lanka Liaison Office Country Business Manager Indika De Zoysa pointing out the benefits of the Intel Classmate PC to Education Minister Bandula Gunawardena at the event (from left) Additional Secretary to President Anura Dissanayake, Intel EM Ltd - Sri Lanka Liaison Office Country Business Manager Indika De Zoysa and Education Minister Bandula Gunawardena (partially seen behind Minister (from left) Zonal Education Director – Homagama Palitha Weerasuriya and Mahinda Rajapaksa Vidyalaya, Homagama Principal H.N.C. Silva
Since launching the World Ahead initiative in Sri Lanka four years ago, Intel has donated 500 PCs to over 25 schools located in the Western, Central, Eastern, Southern, Sabaragamuwa and Uva Provinces.
Speaking at the event, Bandula Gunewardena stated, “IT is definitely the way of the future and we’ve made a strong commitment towards increasing IT literacy amongst the youth and empowering young Sri Lankans at a very early age. One of the key goals of the 1000 Schools Project is to equip each and every child with the necessary knowledge and training to use ICT for the development of the nation.”
The 1000 Schools Project was launched earlier this year as a preliminary stage in creating a knowledge-based society in Sri Lanka.
The goal of the project is to create an opportunity for students to study and excel in the fields of ICT, mathematics, science, English, foreign language studies, aesthetics and sports. One of the key goals of the project aims to bring ICT, and its many benefits to Sri Lankan students, thus ensuring that they receive an IT education that meets international standards.
“We want to make sure that Sri Lankan children can compete with their peers and empowering our school children through IT is essential in accomplishing this task.
The Classmate PC labs at this institution and the others that have received labs before this is the first step in reaching this goal,” said Anura Dissanayake, Additional Secretary to the President’s Office.
The Intel World Ahead programme provides programmes, technology, and resources that encourage better learning. Students and teachers benefit from 21st century learning environments that prepare students and other citizens for success in a changing world.
“Young people and students are the future of this country and it’s essential that they’re well versed in ICT. This is something we’re constantly striving to achieve and these labs will help give students exposure to computers at a very young age and enable them to use ICT in the most effective ways, both within their classroom experiences and once they enter the real world,” said Indika de Zoysa, Country Manager for Intel Sri Lanka.
An organisation that has always been dedicated to promoting ICT among youth and particularly students, the World Ahead Programme is one of many that has been implemented by the organisation in an effort to educate Sri Lankan students.
The programme aims to provide local students with technological resources including PCs, Internet access, digital content etc. to create effective ‘e-Learning’ environments that prepare students for success in a changing world.