The National Education Commission appointed to make policy proposals on education has proposed that the school education be truncated at Grade 12 and admit children to school at the age of 4+ as a move to minimise unruly behaviour among adult students. Commission Chairman Prof. Lakshman Jayathilake said in Grade 13, children were adults of 18 years which was not good for maintaining discipline in school. “We have made a suggestion that school should be truncated at Grade 12 and add a year as pre-school or kindergarten to admit children at the age of 4+. This must be the primary school or a separate entity run by the government.
These are internationally accepted standards, he said. He said children were admitted to school at the age of 4 years in other countries and added that early stage of education was most effective in inculcating educational behaviours. “In other countries, children are admitted at the age of 4 years and educated by very qualified teachers who knows child psychology.
They have small classes in that age so that they are given a good start in life. Early stage of education is very effective in teaching children socialising and adopting to situations etc.,” he said. He said they submitted its proposals on General Education policy proposals including the above to the President and the Prime Minister recently. Prof. Jayathilake said both President and the Prime Minister agreed to submit their set of proposals to the Cabinet as an action plan and to work collaboratively with relevant sections such as Education Ministry, National Institute of Education, Department of Publications and the Examinations Department. He said the commission conducted a research on present requirements, issues in education system and future needs when drafting the proposals. He said their proposals underpinned education psychology for the country, school facilities and infrastructure and arrangement.