Traditional Drummers, and officials in a parade of a Graduation Ceremony at a Private University in Sri Lanka
A Graduation Ceremony at a Private University in Sri Lanka

Education plays a significant role in each person’s life in a variety of ways, all of which are positive. In fact, education benefits people of all ages. However, to provide a head start, each country prioritizes the education of children. Even though Sri Lanka is still a developing country, the concern it has on students’ education is indeed significant. Of course, free education is certainly the major aspect of the education system of the island. However, currently, private education institutions are largely increasing in Sri Lanka, among many of the other education institutions. Besides, private education has become a good choice for many as well. Thus, we thought of focusing this read on the private education of Sri Lanka, and the top reasons to choose it. Yet, for a better understanding, let’s have a quick glance over the education system of Sri Lanka, at first.

How is the Education System of Sri Lanka?

Indeed, the education system of Sri Lanka is at a high standard. Ever since independence, education from grade one to a basic qualification is mandatory for children who are between the age of 5-14 years. Moreover, the government of Sri Lanka interests parents to send their children to school by supplying school textbooks and uniforms. Besides, one can find at least one school in every 6 km2 of the country. Presently, there are 10,390 government schools in Sri Lanka. However, education is free at all levels, together with university education as the government affords the necessary financial support.

However, children in Sri Lanka begin schooling at the age of five, and continue school education until they reach the age of sixteen, eighteen. While Sinhala or Tamil is the primary language taught, English is the secondary language used in schools.

The British colonial era in Sri Lanka existed from 1796 to 1948, and it influenced the country’s educational growth. For example, until the 1960s, all university teaching took place in English. Still, some schools offer English medium education for students, but it is just a minority.

Further, the Sri Lankan educational structure divides into three main parts. First, students begin their education from first to fifth grade, receiving primary education. Then, from grade six to eleven, students proceed with their secondary education, while preparing themselves for the government exam known as G.C.E O/L. Later, students from grade twelve to thirteen proceed with their pre-university education and sit for the Government Exam known as the G.C.E A/L. This makes up the basic structure of the education system of Sri Lanka, and both the government and the private education institutions abide by it.

Types of Private Education Institutes in Sri Lanka

A private institute is an independent body owned by a non-state organization such as a company, commercial enterprise, or an individual. The business orientation of private institutions varies from each other. Some of them have a diverse range of courses and subjects in different fields of study, while others focus on a narrow set of subjects. In Sri Lanka, there are numerous private education institutes, which provide students with primary, secondary, and higher education. Furthermore, several small businesses in the country have sprung up to fill empty spaces. In Sri Lanka, the number of licensed tutoring has grown over the years. Besides, certain research shows that spending on private tutoring has shifted from a luxury doing to a necessity by now.

Moreover, parents choose to send their children to private schools as they assume the quality and standards established by these schools are greater. These institutions’ excellent facilities prepare students to be well rounded and better prepared for the work market of the twenty-first century. However, the amount of money required to send a child to a private school differs depending on the school. Moreover, Sri Lanka’s private universities have risen dramatically in recent years. As a result, they are providing equal competition for government-owned institutions in terms of enrolment. Even better, they provide graduates with a diverse range of career opportunities.

Furthermore, among the other private education industries, private tuition is rapidly growing and is gaining popularity among students. Private individuals or institutions provide tuition for students on different subjects charging a fee. The expansion of this industry has come to the point that private tuition is currently, one of Sri Lanka’s most profitable industries. The majority of students believe that without the involvement of private tutors, they would not be capable of meeting their academic goals.

Private Schools in Sri Lanka

A school founded, operated, and primarily funded by a non-governmental organization, is a private school. The rise of the upper-middle class during the colonial period resulted in a substantial increase in the number of private schools in Sri Lanka. However, at present, Sri Lanka has more than 30 free-of-charge funded private schools and more than 30 fee-charging independent private schools in addition to the government schools. These schools contain both local and British syllabus in Sinhala, English, and Tamils mediums. Some international schools include the IB diploma syllabus, while others prepare students for the Edexcel G.C.E Ordinary Level, Advanced Subsidiary and Advanced Level exams. A few schools also deliver the Cambridge Examinations syllabus. However, among all the private schools in Sri Lanka, the following set of schools stands as the leading private schools in Sri Lanka.

  1. St. Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia‎
  2. Trinity College, Kandy‎
  3. Bishop’s College, Colombo
  4. Holy Family Convent, Bambalapitiya
  5. Ladies’ College, Colombo
  6. Methodist College, Colombo
  7. Musaeus College, Colombo
  8. St. Bridget’s Convent, Colombo
  9. St. Joseph’s College, Colombo
  10. St. Peter’s College, Colombo
  11. St. Lucia’s College, Colombo
  12. Wesley College, Colombo
  13. De Mazenod College, Kandana
  14. Colombo International School

Private Universities in Sri Lanka

A private university is an institution entirely run by the funds of investments and individual donations rather than by taxes. The number of private higher educational universities in Sri Lanka is increasing and the demand for it is comparatively great. The main reason is the space limitations at state universities. Private institutions have the authority of awarding degrees or program-based recognition by the Ministry of Higher Education. The University Grants Commission (UGC) is the body in charge of funding most of Sri Lanka’s state universities. In addition, the UGC presently identifies eleven non-state institutions with the degree-granting position, as well as six non-state institutions with permitted program-based recognition.

Sri Lankan private universities offer a wide range of accepted degrees. However, the majority of them are similar to those provided by government institutions. Appropriate educational authorities recognize these courses and they have an assurance of job market acceptability. The following list will show you some of the most recognized private universities, and higher education institutes in Sri Lanka.

  1. Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT)
  2. General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University (KDU)
  3. National Institute of Fundamental Studies Sri Lanka
  4. Industrial Technology Institute
  5. ESOFT Metro Campus
  6. National Institute of Education Sri Lanka (NIE)
  7. National Institute of Business Management (NIBM)
  8. Asia Pacific Institute of Information Technology Sri Lanka (APIIT)
  9. Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture University of Peradeniya
  10. Colombo International Nautical and Engineering College
  11. Informatics Institute of Technology Sri Lanka (IIT)
  12. Sri Lanka Institute of Advanced Technological Education (SLIATE)

Demand for Private Education in Sri Lanka

Most parents wish to provide their children with the best education under the best facilities that they could afford. In fact, many parents are opting for education opportunities that could mould their children with the necessary aspects to fit in the dynamic world. Besides, Sri Lanka is moving closer to becoming a middle-income nation. Owing to all these reasons, the demand for private education is gradually rising within the country. Of course, many educational institutes offer private education from pre-school to graduate-level for different age groups ranging from schools, universities to tuition providers fulfilling this demand. Still, the demand for private education facilities never goes down. Thus, many new private educational institutions are coming up in the country to fulfil this rising demand.

Advantages of Private Education in Sri Lanka

Private educational institutes provide numerous advantages, which public educational institutes are incapable of providing. However, it is a major reason for private education to gain more popularity and trust by the people. The following are a few of the most familiar benefits of private education.

  1. Enriched learning opportunities are possibly the best advantage of private institutes. Via extracurricular activities, advanced placement courses, and other means, they provide outstanding and stimulating educational opportunities.
  2. Private institutes provide the possibility of studying in small classes for the best learning experience possible. Public institutions being crowded results in disorientation in students. Furthermore, tutors are ideally suited to manage smaller classes of students, ensuring that each student receives personalized attention. The learning process in smaller classes is more efficient and error-free.
  3. Instructors are knowledgeable, dedicated, and enthusiastic about their subject matters and many have professional degrees in their fields. Students have stronger relationships with their teachers in private institutes than in public institutes.
  4. Private schools have credibility for upholding high discipline and respect levels. Having lesser students enable better monitoring and management of the students to prepare them for a better future.
  5. The community at private schools is inspiring, supportive, and nurturing, according to students. Private school graduates are set in with a deep sense of confidence, which leads to abundant interacting opportunities as they enter the job market.
  6. Private schools provide students with a broad variety of specialities, including arts, sports, math, and science, in addition to the mandatory subjects. Moreover, these schools prepare their students to adapt better to changes in technology and culture.
  7. Private schools prioritize open contact between parents and teachers. Often parent-teacher meetings and social activities help to keep parents updated about their children.

Disadvantages of Private Education in Sri Lanka

Indeed, there are benefits of attending a private school. Equally, private schools have several disadvantages too. However, it can be difficult to determine whether a private educational institute is a better alternative for a publicly funded educational institute. Furthermore, the image of growing education costs is challenging and it is particularly difficult for financially struggling learners. The following are a few disadvantages of private education in Sri Lanka.

  1. The limited student body of private institutes acts as an advantage but in the meanwhile, it acts as a weakness as well. Students who reside on a private school or campus require to follow stricter rules than public institutes. Moreover, some private universities require students to seek permission to leave the institution only under specific circumstances.
  2. Certainly, private education comes with a price. It charges a higher fee than public institutions and the key reason for it is that the government does not fund them. Another reason for the high price is because the founder is responsible for all costs associated with paying teachers. This requires a highly fixed sum of money to cover the basic needs of both teaching and non-teaching workers.
  3. Most private institutions focus on getting students who can afford their fees. Other people who are not of the same capacity may be discouraged from attending any of these institutions even if the students are willing to be a part of these institutions.

Future of Private Education in Sri Lanka

Education is at the core of allowing current and future generations to succeed in a technologically advanced world. The ability and the preparation of human services to address these requirements in suitable quantity and quality would greatly influence its tendency to support emerging technologies and to turn them into economic benefits. Moreover, the quality of education has now become a major concern. The demand for higher education has grown in line with the rise in school attendance. With the increase in enrolment and people prioritizing education, more schools, especially private schools, have sprouted up. However, as more school graduates are unable to enrol in public universities due to capacity limitations, private institutions provide the students with the possibility of pursuing their higher education degrees at professional levels. Due to this very reason, private institutes are in high demand and private educational institutes find it easier to break into the market.

Moreover, as the new world emerges, private educational institutions are eager to provide more opportunities for students to continue their studies and to plan their future. Furthermore, certain private institutions provide people of any age group with the opportunity to continue their education in any field they choose. In response to the social demand for higher education, people pay to support the higher education of the youth population in the country because an educational degree is a qualification a person earns for himself or herself for a better future. Due to this feature of education, every parent wishes for his or her child to obtain a graduate degree. However, with the current acceptance of private educational institutes by the Sri Lankan community, more progress and recognition of private education in Sri Lanka can be foreseen in the future. Thus, the future of private education seems to be all good!

The Bottom Line

After all, it is clear that private schools are well-recognized for their higher educational standards than public schools in several aspects. Therefore, the demand for private education in Sri Lanka tends to rise high day, by day. Owing to this reason, the private education facility of this country cannot be disregarded as it directly impacts many significant aspects of this country as a whole.

Besides, if you are also an individual who is aiming to excel in your academic in Sri Lanka, we hope that you found this read helpful. And finally, let us remind you of a simple fact. If you are aiming for proper quality education, of course, private education in Sri Lanka is indeed a good choice!