Thilini Shalvin, a teacher from a small countryside school. She is the one that started a movement against the rule that female teachers should wear a saree to school.

However, today her dream become true and lots of ordinary people and teachers started to support her movement.

Today (21) female teachers of many schools on the island have come to school dressed in light clothes such as gowns, skirt tops, pants kurtas, etc. instead of sarees.

The teachers mention on social media that this step was taken due to the increase in the price of saris due to the current economic inflation.

They mentioned that with the economic problems and transportation difficulties in the country, it is difficult to go to work wearing a sari.

And also, the Ministry of Public Administration has also issued a circular stating that public servants can report to work wearing suitable clothes. So, according to that permission, they change the dress code.

The teachers also mentioned that the students hugged them with love when they came. According to the circular issued by the Secretary of the Ministry of Public Administration, teachers’ unions including the Ceylon Teachers’ Union had previously requested the Ministry of Education to allow teachers to come to schools in other suitable clothes instead of saris. But, some religious parties protested against it.

However, Education Minister Susil Premajayantha had earlier stated that sarees are more suitable for female teachers.

But with today’s situation, we can conclude that teachers do not agree with that statement.

Thilini Shalvin Facebook Post
Teachers refuse to wear sarees

Who is Thilini Shalvin?

(translated from a note written by Shenal Gunasekara on Facebook)

Before slandering a person, is it bad if you research a little about that person?
Thilini Shalvin passed the A Levels and goes to Peradeniya to pursue a degree in Arts. Batch topper in all four years.

At the end of 2014, he came with a teaching appointment to Chulabhaya School, Kahataliadde, Ududumbara.

She goes to this school at the foot of the Hunnasgiri mountain very willingly, to contribute to the merits of the children in the villages.
After going to school, she saw a big problem. This school has no water. You may think that there is no water in a fertile area like Ududumbara. Yes, there are many streams in Ududumbara, but no one has made a system to distribute the water properly.

Chulabhaya School was a school that had fewer facilities. After about 40 km on the Kandy-Mahiyangana road, you will find Chulabhaya School after going through a difficult narrow road which is about eight to nine kilometers inside Ududumbara.

The surroundings are very beautiful. The environment is very cold. But the facilities are very limited. The family background of the children coming to the school is also not in a good condition. That is the economic difficulties.

When you go to these areas, anyone will be surprised if there are still isolated villages like this in Sri Lanka. But, that’s the truth. Those people do not know the events of the past and are not relevant. Children do not have proper nutrition. There is no food for both the morning and afternoon meals.

At night, only some rice or rice with one curry. Some children come to school after wading waist-deep in water and walking for miles.

Let’s put all that aside, how can a school exist without even a drop of clean water to drink?

Thilini starts a big mission. Asking for help via Facebook. Tell the situation about the school and necessary matters. Many people join this work. With that help, implemented a system to bring water to the school from a spring in the Garadigala mountain by laying pipes for four kilometers.

They built a 5000-liter water tank. Three or four years ago, when she spoke from the top of the country about how to use “tools”, she proved in action that Facebook is a valuable tool if used properly.

Those children got the necessary tutoring to play netball, play drama, and draw. Thilini worked hard to show those children that there is a world beyond the mountain ring.
At the 2017 Derana Sri Lankan of The Year Award Ceremony, Thilini Akka will be honored in the ‘Unsung Hero’ category along with renowned Sri Lankan celebrities such as Lester James Peiris, Airangani Serasinghe, Muttiah Muralitharan, Professor Chandra Wickramasinghe. Sri Lanka now knows about Thilini Akka, who was not praised. I believe that Indika Fernando’s ‘Ho Gana Pokuna’ is the most successful film in recent history that has touched every human being in Sri Lanka without any division.
There are teachers like “Miss Uma” not only in the reel world but also in the real world. Thilini Shalvin is one such person.

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