Category Archives: 2020 Activities

Addressing the impact of COVID on education and lobbying for ensure accessibility -Radio Messages Click here to listen

By | 2020 Activities | No Comments

Although the government and authorities have introduced alternative educational platforms many students specially the marginalized and students in the rural areas and people who belong to the lower income groups were unable to use these methods. The major reasons for this situation could be listed as follows

  • Unavailability or inability to purchase devices (smart phones or computer) required for online education (Availability)
  • Inadequate infrastructure and technical knowledge (Accessibility)
  • In sufficient income and facilities to engage online platforms (Affordability)
  • Inadequate validation of the educational material (Quality issues) 
  • Lack of assessment on the functioning and performance of the alternative platforms (Monitoring and Evaluation) 

Although the above issues have been distinctly listed for the purpose of better understanding, in the practical situation all these are deeply interconnected and has created complex situation. To overcome these issues and ensure inclusive equitable access to education, CED decided to initiate an advocacy campaign to lobby the authorities and relevant parties to implement the relevant action.

Message i- Appreciates teachers who volunteered to utilize alternative teaching methods. During the period where the schools have been closed, some teachers came forward to teach their students voluntarily. Firstly, they used social media to conduct classes and prepared lessons and tutorials on their cost and shared with students. 

Message ii – Request the teachers and owners of the private education institutes to reduce the charges to reasonable level. It was observed and several people complained that the tuition fee has been increased during this period. Beside that additional charges for printing and distribution of tutorials have been added. In fact, the cost for maintaining and conducting online classes are comparatively low when compared to face to face of physical classes. Despite the fact these charges have been increased and parents have found it difficulties in paying the additional fees. Therefore, the teachers or the institutes were asked to review the charges and reduce the amount to a reasonable rate. This is important as the income level of the ordinary people specially the informal sector employees have been reduced because of the pandemic situation.

 Message iii- Requested the authorities to develop infrastructure for the online learning platforms and ensure the equal access to every student. Most of the rural areas do not have the necessary facilities for online learning. Therefore, students as well as teachers are unable to conduct classes. On the other hand, most of the parents do not have adequate income sources in this pandemic situation to provide their children with necessary facilities. CED expected the messages to reach approximately to 10 million listeners through the period.

CED was able reach more that 1.3 million audience(daily) and created awareness on the issues related to education due to pandemic situation and make them sensitive through these radio messages.1


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Health Education Campaign Sticker and Messages

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CED assisted the Ministry of Education effort to reopen the schools and continue education.  To minimize the spreading of COVID 19 virus it is vital to adhere to health measures introduced by the health authorities. However, it is observed that awareness among the school children about the health messages is not adequate and this resulted in a risk behavior among them. CED developed sticker targeting school children and disseminated to the schools specially in the remote areas 

Youth Action Research Project

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The government developed the infrastructure required to make free education accessible to all. This process created a network of state run schools and an administrative structure that managed them. Although the state adopted measures to ensure a uniform standard among all schools, some qualitative disparities are clearly perceptible.  The different standards in quality and uneven provision of facilities of schools can be ascribed to political, geographical or other factors and also due to certain measures adopted by the state itself. The government has framed regulations and specified criteria to ensure equity in resource allocation. However they have been found to be sorely inadequate to eliminate existing inequities.  As a result of that some of the schools specially in remote areas do not have the basic infrastructural facilities.  Owing to this situation teachers are reluctant to work in these schools and it further exaggerate the disparities in quality of the education. This is resulted in high ratio of dropped outs, irregular attendance and finally poor performance education attainments in the particular communities.  With the 13 years of experience in the education sector CED has basically identified certain locations where communities underprivileged from quality education. 

In this Youth Action Research CED anticipate to engaged the youth to identify the root causes pertaining to their communities with regard to education, mobilize local resources to address those issues whenever possible and internalize the capacities to utilize the provisions of the legal framework to protect their right to education.  Thus CED expects to strength the capacities of the youth researchers and finding solutions in a participatory manner.  

Accordingly, the main objectives of the YAR could be listed as follows 

  • Strengthen the youth participation of the CED network
  • Develop the capacity of the youth as social mobilizers 
  • Promote ownership of the community in solving their problems and 
  • Provide sustainable solution to educational issues in the community 
  • Identify the issues related to their education
  • Present the findings to the authorities

Engagement of the youth in social activities have been significantly reduced due to the existing social economic factors in the society and CED believe that this YAR would helped to youth to recognize their capacities and emphasize the important role that youth have to play to find solutions for issue related to education in their communities.    

CED has made arrangement to implement this project in Rathnapura and Kaluthara Districts. The initial data gathering and building rapport with the community is in progress  

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Promoting Youth Involvement in Realizing SDG4

By | 2020 Activities | No Comments

In order to provide and identity and promote visibility of these campaigns CED decided to print T- Shirts with the message Youth for education. It is planned to distribute these T-shirts to the youth who actively participate to our training and we believe this would be helped to motivate them to involve with us in the future activities.


Capacity Building Programme on Climate Change COVID-19 Epidemic and Impact on Education

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Sri Lanka is among the top ten of the most vulnerable country to the natural disasters and has been ranked second among the countries most affected by extreme weather events in 20 years since 1998. For the past three years, Sri Lanka has been experiencing a series of extreme weather events

Education has two obvious effects on the fight against climate change. Firstly, it impacts citizens’ general awareness of the issue, and secondly, it determines how enabled they are to develop the necessary solutions and innovations to overcome the problem. The National Adaptation Plan for climate change which was developed in 2016 by Ministry of Mahaweli Development and environment does not adequately focused on the impact of the climate change in education. However, within the last decades due to bad weather and natural disasters number of schools has to be closed for several days.  On the other hand most of the instances authorities used to utilize school infrastructure provide temporary shelter for displaced people due the disaster situation.

With the objective of raising the awareness of the youth on Climate change which leads to Natural disasters and sensitize them on the education in emergencies. CED believes and confident wit that through these capacity building programme these youths would have gained knowledge and skills that could be applied to understand analyze the issues related to education and respond them to in effective manner for the betterment of the community  


Training on Media Literacy

By | 2020 Activities | No Comments

Media and information literacy become an important qualification for fostering equitable access to education. information and knowledge. Therefore, new forms of competencies (knowledge, skills and attitudes) are required for people to effectively participate and succeed throughout all stages of life in the information and knowledge societies. With the contemporary pandemic situation where the people are advised to restrict the movements and confined to their homes the impact of media has been dramatically increased.  In this situation people specially youth as the future generation need specific competencies (knowledge, skills and attitudes) to engage with the media to be actively participate political governance and other processes.  


In order to develop the capacity of the youth on above mentioned competencies CED conducted capacity building progamme on Media literacy for the selected youth groups.

CED expects that this capacity building programme helped the develop media literacy among the youth and they would engage with media not merely passive audience but become active producers of information and innovators of media and information products, as well as critical thinkers.


Capacity building programmes for youth

By | 2020 Activities | No Comments

CED conducted Three capacity building programmes for identified youth groups. The themes of these trainings were selected considering the following three factors. 

1) Overall objective of the youth constituency building programme 

2) Assessment on the knowledge and skill of the youth participants for youth consultation 

3) increase youth involvement motivate them in addressing contemporary issues related to education by introducing youth friendly intervention methods


Accordingly following trainings were conducted on following topics/areas 

  • Social interaction platforms online learning and role of youth in realizing SDG4  
  • Critical Media literacy for active participation in democratic process and realizing SDGs 
  • Climate change, COVID 19 Epidemic and Impact on Education -The role if youth to build resilient community  


Training programme on social interaction platforms and Online learning was held on 05 November with the participation of 46 youth from different localities. Through this training programme CED aimed to developed the skills of the youth related to social interactive platforms and Online learning/meeting applications.   This training was scheduled as the initial training programme as per the request of the youth as well as the advisory committee of CED. The positive impact of this capacity building and the results/outcome of this training could be observed throughout the other training programmes.

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In-Country Youth Consultation Meeting

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Youth consultation meeting was held in October 2020. Although it was planned to conduct a face-to-face meeting this was not materialized due the health measures imposed by the government limiting the social gathering and meetings.   A total number of 35 youth that belongs to various social economic and ethnic groups representing 08 districts of Sri Lanka participated to this consultation. 

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Lobbying Parliamentarians During the Budget Debates 2020

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Although there was no public opinion calling for the National budget proposals for 2021, CED make arrangement to send the revised proposals to all the parliamentarians. Accordingly, CED asked all the member organization and representative of these civil society organizations and activists to send these proposals using their own email accounts. To keep records on their response they were asked to copy the same email to a special email address created by CED

In addition to that CED Sri Lanka made arrangement to publish the revised Education budget proposals on weekend Newspapers which have largest circulation in Sri Lanka in local Languages Sinhala and Tamil. 


Conducting Training and Awareness Raising Program in Provincial Level

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CED organized two consultation meetings through the member organizations. CED informed the member organizations to invite representatives from the civil society organizations in their respective districts to these programmes. CED budget proposals that developed in the initial workshop were presented in these programmes and most of the participants requested CED to revise the civil society budget proposal to address the emerging negative issues related to education. Accordingly, after reviewing the suggestion made at the discussion a set of new budget proposals were developed.