Strike One

Ishara S. Kodikara | AFP | Getty Images Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, center, speaks to supporters at the prime minister's official residence in Colombo on December 16, 2018, after he was reappointed as prime minister by Sri Lanka's president, the same man who fired him from the job nearly two months ago.

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (ICASL) qualified as the first higher education institute outside the university system for a World Bank grant last week. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (ICASL) qualified as the first higher education institute outside the university system for a World Bank grant last week.

“We were notified that we have qualified,” ICASL President, Indrajith Fernando said.

The funds come from a Rs. 4 bn project by the World Bank to re-haul the country’s tertiary education sector. But the project itself has got bogged down by political realities.

The Institute will match the grant with another Rs 100 mn to expand its current building space and invest in better quality educational tools like modern learning and research facilities.

“Now we don’t have facilities like distance learning and language labs but we are hoping to introduce these,” Fernando says.

Local universities are also lined up for aid under the Rs. 4 bn project that tries to re-align the tertiary education system to bridge the current labour-market mismatch.

Local universities have applied for grants ranging from Rs. 30 mn to Rs