The 51st Death Anniversary Commemoration of Dr. C.W.W. Kannangara, who is hailed as the Father of Free Education was held under the patronage of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and the Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa today (23).
The President and the Prime Minister paid floral tributes to the Kannangara statue erected at the Presidential Secretariat premises.
Students of Sirimavo Bandaranaike Vidyalaya, Colombo and Piliyandala Central College sang the Kannangara commemorative song.
Dr. C.W.W. Kannangara was instrumental in passing the Free Education Act of 1943 in the then legislature in order to extend the privileges of free education to all children from Grade 1 to university level. The free education system that usher in a structural transformation of Sri Lankan society has paved the way for hundreds of thousands of children of underprivileged families to achieve a higher standard of living as well as to reduce social inequality.
Numerous political leaders since then contributed to nurture the free education system following its establishment in 1943. A member of the State Council and subsequently the Parliament, Mr. D.A Rajapaksa was a pioneer in this.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has prioritized to revise and revamp the Kannangara education policy to match modern times. A number of amendments in education policies under the theme “Equal academic opportunities for every child” are now being implemented under the guidance of the President.
The Minister of Education, Prof. G.L. Pieris, Secretary to the President, P.B. Jayasundera, Secretary to the Ministry of Education, Prof. Kapila Perera, officials of the Ministry of Education, Chairperson of the Old Pupils of the All Island Central School’s Association, Chartered Accountant J.M.U.B. Jayasekara and several others present at the occasion.