Jan 03, Colombo: Following protests from the education sector and political parties including governing party allies, the government of Sri Lanka has decided not to scrapped the Grade 5 scholarship examination.
Cabinet Spokesperson, Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told the media that the Cabinet of Ministers had never decided to cancel the Grade 5 scholarship examination.
However, the Cabinet when it met this week had discussed at length about the comment made by Education Minister Bandula Gunawardena that the Grade 5 scholarship examination will be scrapped in 2016.
A large number of ministers had objected to such a move.
The Grade 5 scholarship examination held to screen for gifted students is the only avenue available for poor but intelligent student from rural areas to enter elite popular schools in the country.
Minister Gunawardena said in December that the Grade 5 scholarship examination will not be held from the year 2016 and that instead of putting pressure on children and parents in rural villages a one-hour examination will be held to measure the standard of students.
He added that the new exam will increase the scholarships provided to intelligent students in villages and that students who still wish to enter a school in Colombo even after the completion of the 1,000 schools programme will be allowed to do so.