Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa has launched a pilot program to donate digital computer boards (Smart Boards) and computers to the school system in Sri Lanka with the aim of accelerating the transition to a digital economy through information technology.
Nearly 75% of students entering government schools do not have computers at home. Internet access is limited to about 35% of the population, with only 1.67 million regular Internet subscribers. A LIRNEAsia study conducted in 2020 showed that online-based educational access (even in the form of notes distributed using PDF and WhatsApp) was available to only 45% of school-age students. Although 96% of households have only one mobile phone, it can be challenging to have the device shared with the children for regular educational purposes, provided the parents own it.
The growing digital divide in Sri Lanka has been further exposed even as the epidemic began to spread. Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa has said that it will not be easy for the children of this country to deal with the modern world of technology in the future with the current situation. Hence the Smart Board and Computer Donation Pilot Program will be launched with the sole aim of creating a future generation of children.