School News

Isipathana College Celebrates its Glorious 70th Anniversary

Friday, 4th of February 2022

The dawn of February turns a new page in the victorious journey of Isipathanaians every year. Mother Isipathana celebrated its successful 70th Anniversary on February 2nd. Isipathana is recognized as one of the leading national schools in the country that has students from all three races learning under one alma mater. In 1952, the heavy capacity of over 400 students in the primary section of Royal College resulted in the birth of Greenlands College in the heart of Colombo under the visionary leader Mr B. A Kuruppu.

Greenlands College was later renamed as Isipathana College. Greenlands College received its name, symbolising the greenish environment around the premises. “Strive with determination”, the school motto, inspires the students towards achieving their ambitions and goals with determination and courage. Isipathana is considered the land of Rugby and has managed to dominate the major league championships consecutively while producing the most Rugby players for the national team. Isipathana College has been at the forefront of schools Rugby for more than two decades.

It has provided the Sri Lanka rugby team with more than 56 national players and a number of top ruggerites since 1970, in which year they produced the first national player. The school has also produced some outstanding Sri Lankan captains in the calibre of Hisham Abdeen (1988), Viraj Prasantha (1998), Nalin de Silva (1980), Sudath Sampath (1993), Champika Nishantha (2000), Sajith Mallikarachchi (2005), Dinusha Chaturanga (2010) and Srinath Sooriyabandara (2012), Omalka Gunaratne (present) and many more. Isipathana College has shown tremendous success over the past 70 years under 19 principals, and currently, over 4000 students are doing their studies at Isipathana College.

The principals that managed the College were Mr B. A. Kuruppu, S. J. Rodrigo, A. H. Wijetunge, H. R. Perera, H. D. De Silva (Acting Principal), Brevel.Col. G.W. Rajapakse, W. T. P. T. Thilakaratne ,T. E. de S. Leelananda, S. de Muthukumarana , V. S. Kudaligama, Gamini Chandrasekara, D. G. W. Jayasinghe, H. A. Upali Gunasekara, Punyadasa Kuruppu , I. M. Kamal Palitha Illanasinghe, A. M. A. A. C. Perera , Epa K. Premesiri (Acting Principal) , Pabasara Bandara (Acting Principal) and currently Oshara Panditharathna. Under the dynamic leadership of Mr. Upali Gunasekera, Isipathana College accelerated its progress in all aspects.

He introduced many cutting-edge fields in that time that would enhance students’ industrial and practical skills, such as motor mechanism, agriculture, electronics, magazine publications, and many more. This includes linguistic skills like Japanese language classes. After Mr Gunasekera took duties at Royal College, Mr Punyadasa Kuruppu was appointed as Principal. In his period, College collected the much-needed finances to build the swimming pool, which was planned for many years. Further, in his time, a three-story new building was constructed and added to the infrastructure, including an open-air theatre to showcase the aesthetic skills of school students.

Mr A. M. A. A. C. Perera was appointed as the Principal after Mr Kuruppu. As the final act of Mr Kuruppu, he supported the OBA to collect more funds to build the swimming pool by giving his leadership to the project “Walk to Swim” organized by the OBA of Isipathana College. OBA project chairman Ahamed Zumri headed this project, and this project successfully collected the initially required funds for the completion of the swimming pool project. In Mr Perera’s period, the swimming pool work commenced, and he headed a swimming pool committee to inspect and complete the project. A distinguished old boy, Present Finance minister Hon Basil Rajapaksa was the chief guest in commencing the Swimming Pool project on August 1st 2014. Distinguish Old boy Dr Jagath Alwis contributed the highest single investment of Rs 8 million for the success of this project.

After Mr Perera was temporally transferred to the education ministry, Mr K. Premesiri Epa was appointed as the Acting Principal in June 2015 to overlook the management of the College. In the time of acting principal Mr Epa K. Premesiri, the construction work of the swimming pool was concluded, and the former prime minister Mr Ranil Wickremesinghe joined as the chief guest in the opening ceremony. Mr Epa left College in the year 2020 February, and the deputy principal took over the position of Acting Principal. The new Principal Mr Oshara Panditharathna took up duties in June 2021 in the height of the pandemic in Sri Lanka.

With many covid restrictions and a reduced income, he is optimistic about taking Isipathana College to the next level. By now, the school is comprised of the latest technological hubs, smart classrooms, well-equipped Gymnasiums, hostels, next level swimming pool and many more facilities that would catalyst the productivity of students. Very recently, college premises have been converted to WiFi Zone with the contribution of the Old Boys Association. Especially behind the success of Isipathana College, Old Boys have become a major force, and the school has got great recognition for the alumni base thriving all around the world.

The school has launched a major campaign to digitalize the classrooms. As the first stage of that project A-Level science section was refurbished smart boards and new equipment to continue their studies through digital technologies. Eminent old boy Dr Jagath Alwis invested Rs 12.5 million for lab development project thru the OBA. Isipathana College celebrated 70 years of excellence by conducting a series of events. On February 1st, an all-night Pirith chanting ceremony was held, remarking on the school anniversary.

On January 2nd, school students have organised an almsgiving and blood donation camp. And on the same day, the school will be taking the first step towards building a five-story building sponsored by proud Isipathana DR Jagath Alwis. Further, the school will be planning to bring back the musical sensation of Isipathanians, Isisara Musical show back on stage and organise inter-school cricket and Swimming tournaments to showcase the extracurricular skills of students. Building a suitable environment for the betterment of the future generation is the aim of any learning institution. Isipathana College has always devoted it’s time to producing better citizens in all the fields in the country, and Mother Isipathana would stand with pride and respect for decades and decades.

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