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* Establishment of a "Sister School Programme" for a Trilingual Sri Lanka
Fri, Oct 12, 2012, 08:31 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Oct 12, Colombo: Sri Lanka parliament today moved a motion in the House and passed it to establish a program to promote the Trilingual Sri Lanka plan.

Recognizing that developing a ten year National Strategic Framework for a Trilingual Sri Lanka is a landmark measure for national integration and social harmony, the parliament passed a motion today to establish a "Sister School Programme".

Under the Sister School Programme, short term exposure programs will be instituted for the exchange of students and teachers across the ethnic communities of the country.

The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of National Languages and Social Integration will take measures to link individual schools in majority Sinhala speaking areas with Tamil medium schools.

Under an initiative by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Sri Lanka earlier this year launched an ambitious ten-year plan to make the country a trilingual nation and declared the year 2012 as the 'Trilingual Year'.

The cabinet last year approved the President's proposal to implement a 10-year national action plan formulated as the basis for a National Programme to motivate the people to acquire language skills in all three major languages.

The 'Sinhala only' act in 1958 was seen as a catalyst for the Tamil Tiger terrorism that devastated the country for decades. The separatists used the policy as a ploy to promote their cause to carve out a separate homeland in the North and East where the major language is Tamil.

Trilingual initiative is one of the recommendations by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission.

** Related Story :: Trilingual Sri Lanka Task Force holds its preliminary discussion

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