"Sri Gnanalankara" Dhamma School (English Medium)

Sri Gnanalankara (English Medium) Dhamma School is one of the prestigious Dhamma schools in the central hills of Sri Lanka. The Dhamma School is an organized effort to provide an opportunity for children in their search for the "right way" of living. This Dhamma School which holds a history of 10 Years has been successful in enhancing the knowledge of nearly 500 students throughout these years while giving the students a solid basis for life while shaping up their thinking abilities to develop wholesome thoughts and personalities to withstand the ripples of evil.

Having considered that one important aim of a Buddhist education center is to produce a morally developed educated child for future Sri Lanka and in order to achieve this ideal the Sri Gnanalankara Dhamma School of the Sri Subodharama Maha Vihara of Peradeniya was established. Our Dhamma School from its very inception imparted its education only through Sinhala medium. But with the recent changes in education there arose a pressing need to take the Buddhist philosophy into our society.

It happens especially so when the system of education where the main media of instruction happened to be English. As a result of it the Sinhalese Buddhist child lost almost nearly his chance of receiving a proper Buddhist education, therefore a need to give the Buddhist education in a way befitting those children studying in international schools was strongly felt. The need of finding out a highly suitable method for this purpose also was felt. It was felt that giving Dhamma education through Sinhala media alone was not sufficient enough. That is why as the most suitable step we started an English medium Dhamma school under the very name of SRI GNANALANKARA DHAMMA SCHOOL.

This Dhamma School of English medium was opened on Sunday, the 23rd of February 2003 under the direction of Most Venerable Viharadhipathi, Vishvakeerthi Sri Dharmavisharada Panditha Wattegama Dhammawasa Thero-The Sangha Nayaka of the central province and of Australia.

From then onwards Dhamma education was made available to be received under 8 grades. We were able to get our students to sit for Dhamma and even higher Dhamma examinations which were held annually by the Colombo Y.M.B.A. Also having attained a higher level of its education our Dhamma School was fortunate enough to gain the all-island third place according to the examinational results of the year 2006. From then onwards up to now in the all-island annual contests our Dhamma School has recorded many outstanding successes at grade levels. Further with the idea of finding out the children's talents in some selected fields of their education. Inter-school tests and competitions are held annually and those who make good performances are awarded prizes and certificates.

At present there are 10 members in our teaching staff carrying out duties under the close observation of our Most Venerable Nayaka Thero. In addition to the Dhamma educational activities a student's society is functioning to improve knowledge, skills and attitudes of the children. There is also a Dhamma School welfare society whose main functions are to render co-operation in management affairs and take part in all religious activities of the temple. From the very inception up to now our Dhamma School was taking part in almost all Peraheras, catering services and various special programmes. The parent's society rendered sponsorship in all-week Pirith Chanting ceremonies, Nayaka Thero's birthday celebrations and Katina Pinkamas-all of which were held annually.